School of Law, Gender and Media & Law, Environment and Development Centre

Conflicts over Access to Water and Land: Evolving dimensions (2022–2025)


This project sponsored by the Bloomsbury Colleges PhD Studentships programme starts from the premise that water is at the centre of conflicts in all parts of the world.

One of the triggers for such conflicts is climate change, whose range of impacts is fast increasing, including in particular rising water scarcity. Water scarcity does not just affect access to sufficient and safe water for domestic needs but impacts livelihoods in multiple ways. These impacts are experienced unequally: women, poor and stigmatised people suffer much more from water scarcity. This is at the root of multiple conflicts over water use.

This project addresses water conflicts through the lens of water security, which offers an entry point to bridge the distinction between availability of water and access to water. Water security concerns access to water to fulfil each individual’s basic water needs, access for water-dependent livelihoods, as well as water for energy production and commercial activities.