Activity 1.2 - Reframing

Course: 2018 Science Communication Skills for Water Cooperation and Diplomacy
Book: Activity 1.2 - Reframing
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Date: Thursday, 2 December 2021, 11:27 AM

1 - Introduction

Perhaps you identified that research can help resolve some of the pressing issues countries living along the Nile are experiencing; and that this perspective is missing. 

  1. Read this piece and write down what you think the author is trying to achieve with this short editorial. 

2 - Introduction continued

The author actively acknowledges the prevailing viewpoints or frames regarding water reporting but uses it as a way to promote  science as a solution. It is essential to start considering what messages you want to surface when communicating your work. 

3 - Nile Benefits

  1. List five water-related benefits that can be shared between states or communities along the River Nile.

Do you realise that communities and countries of the Nile Basin have a lot more to share than to fight for? Whereas the Nile offers enormous opportunities for sharable benefits, historically tension has arisen over the tendency towards competition rather than sharing.

4 - Alternative forms of communication

  1. As a scientist carrying out research on the Nile Basin, you are in a privileged position to promote more fruitful communication. Suggest a way in which you can address or challenge the following ways of talking about the Nile Basin
Established way of communicating:

  • It is a competition, my country’s interests come first
  • The Nile belongs to… 
  • This is a security issue
  • They are purposely being difficult/they don’t want us to have access to… 

5 - Suggested answers


Established way of communicating


It is a competition, my country’s interests come first

Communicate benefits of transboundary water cooperation

The Nile belongs to…

Draw attention to the fact that it’s a vast resource shared by millions of people.

This is a security issue

Draw attention to it being a development issue

They are purposely being difficult/they don’t want us to have access to…

Focus on appreciation and respect for each community’s unique situations and needs with regard to the Nile waters. Highlight the unique needs of different communities.

“Moving forward I think the region is going to have to look toward creating a river of prosperity for everybody instead of a river of division and grief” - Cleo Paskal, author of Global Warring, in an interview with Aljezeera Television Network."