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WEF nexus workshops organised for government officials in East London, Kimberley, Mahikeng and Pretoria

In October and November 2022, the WEF communities project organised 4 workshops for government officials in East London, Kimberley, Mahikeng and Pretoria. The workshops were organised by consortium partners Utrecht University, North-West University, University of Fort Hare and University of Groningen, with the support of the Water Research Commission (  


The WEF communities project aims to provide the necessary knowledge to support poor communities in improving their access to water, energy and food in South Africa. To do so, it is imperative to clarify who is involved in such decisions related to the WEF nexus, at what levels, and with what consequences for social justice. 


With the aim of stimulating effective discussions during the workshops, the WEF communities consortium members showcased: i) preliminary analyses of the South African legal framework concerning water, energy and food; and ii) results from nearly 1,200 household surveys conducted in two rural areas in South Africa (Matatiele, Eastern Cape; and Vaalharts, North-West and Northern Cape) looking at WEF nexus security at the household level.


The workshops had the following objectives: 

  1. To provide preliminary feedback on household surveys undertaken in Matatiele local municipality, Taung local municipality and Majeng in the Magareng Local Municipal area. 

  2. Exchange views on the meaning of social justice in the scope of the WEF nexus in South Africa. 

  3. Discuss how to operationalize the WEF nexus to improve poor communities access to water, energy and food. 

  4. Increase knowledge regarding national agencies and departments interactions, intradepartmental dynamics and vertical coordination in the decision-making process on matters relating to water, energy and food. 

  5. Identify intra and inter-agency trade-offs and discuss whether and where more cross-sectoral coordination and collaboration are needed. 


The workshops were joint learning activities, in which academics and practitioners worked together to better define challenges and identify solutions. The full workshop notes are available upon request.

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