Land and Hydropolitics in the Nile River Basin: Challenges and new investments, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Land and Hydropolitics in the Nile River Basin

Challenges and new investments, 1st Edition

Edited by Emil Sandstrom, Anders Jagerskog, Terje Oestigaard


238 pages | 27 B/W Illus.

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The Nile River Basin supports the livelihoods of millions of people in Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan and Uganda, principally as water for agriculture and hydropower. The resource is the focus of much contested development, not only between upstream and downstream neighbours, but also from countries outside the region. This book investigates the water, land and energy nexus in the Nile Basin.

It explains how the current surge in land and energy investments, both by foreign actors as well as domestic investors, affects already strained transboundary relations in the region and how investments are intertwined within wider contexts of Nile Basin history, politics and economy. Overall, the book presents a range of perspectives, drawing on political science, international relations theory, sociology, history and political ecology.


'[T]his book is an important contribution to the literature because it provides new critical insights on the effects of land investments, a topic missing from the literature, showing their impacts on the hydropolitical relations in the basin…the chapters…eloquently unfold to show the linkages between the Nile Basin, the Middle East and the major investors, and how important these linkages are in terms of virtual water trade.' - Hussam Hussein, International Journal of Water Resources Development, 2017

Table of Contents

1. Changing Challenges: New Hydropolitical Landscapes in the Nile Basin

Emil Sandström, Anders Jägerskog and Terje Oestigaard

2. Dealing with Water: Emerging Land Investments and the Hydropolitical Landscape of the Nile Basin

Emil Sandström

3. Overseas Investment in Land and Challenges in the Nile Basin: Evident Links from the Middle East and North Africa Investment

Kyungmee Kim and Anders Jägerskog

4. The Gulf States in the Political Economy of the Nile Basin: a Historical Overview

Harry Verhoeven

5. Inward Investment in Sudan: the Case of Qatar

Martin Keulertz

6. Sudan, ‘Kingmaker’ in a New Nile Hydropolitics: Negotiating Water and Hydraulic Infrastructure to Expand Large-scale Irrigation

Ana Cascão and Alan Nicol

7. Transboundary Water Resources and the Political Economy of Large-scale Land Investments in the Nile: Sudan, Hydropolitics, and Arab Food Security

Ramy Lotfy Hanna

8. Dams, Water and Accountability in Uganda

David Ross Olanya

9. "Lease the Land, but Use the Water": The Case of Gambella, Ethiopia

Wondwosen Michago Seide

10. Lake Tana: Source of Disputes or Collaboration over the Blue Nile?

Mats Hårsmar, Emil Sandström and Atakilte Beyene

11. Water, National Identities and Hydropolitics in Egypt and Ethiopia

Terje Oestigaard

About the Editors

Emil Sandström is Senior Researcher at the Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, Sweden, and Senior Lecturer and former Head of the Rural Development division at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU).

Anders Jägerskog is Counsellor for regional water issues in the Middle East and North Africa for the Embassy of Sweden in Amman, Jordan, and Associate Professor at the School of Global Studies at Göteborg University, Sweden. He is former Head of the Transboundary Unit at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI).

Terje Oestigaard is Senior Researcher at the Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, Sweden, and Docent in Archeology at Uppsala University.

About the Series

Earthscan Studies in Water Resource Management

Earthscan Studies in Water Resource Management
This series includes a wide range of inter-disciplinary approaches to water resource management, integrating perspectives from both social and natural sciences. It includes research monographs and titles aimed at professionals, NGOs and policy-makers. Authors or editors of potential new titles should contact Hannah Ferguson, Editor (

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Environmental Policy