American University of Beirut

The Water-Energy-Food-Population-Economy Nexus: Lessons from the MENARA Research Project


The Food Security Program (FSP) hosted a panel discussion entitled “The Water-Energy-Food-Population-Economy Nexus: Lessons from the MENARA Research Project" at the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences (FAFS) on June 6. Expert panelists presented findings concerning the economic, demographic and environmental trends and scenarios facing the MENA region until 2025, 2050 and 2100. Martin Keulertz, chair of the Food Security Program Executive Committee, opened the discussion by presenting the demographic and environmental implications of the Water-Energy-Food-Population-Economy Nexus. Eckart Woertz, a senior research fellow at the Barcelona Centre for International Affairs (CIDOB), then analyzed the economic and political implications of the Nexus. Sophia Burke from Community Interest Company (AmbioTEK) and Arnout van Soesbergen from Department of Geography at King's College London (KCL) demonstrated the MENARA policy tool via a shared-screen Skype call. Following the presentations, panelists and audience members discussed how the Nexus will shape the MENA region and how the MENARA policy tool can inform policymaking and meaningful debate. The MENARA research project was undertaken as part of the European Union's Horizon 2020 program, with the participation 14 universities and research institutions from Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa.


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