Water and Agriculture MENA

IWRM-MENA Water and Agriculture
Exam Code
Credit Points 3 Credits equivalent to 5 ECTS
Term Winter (German Jordanian Univerity)
Module Coordination Dr. Sudeh Dehnavi
Lecturers Dr. Munjed Alsharif
Compulsory Attendance (h) 48 hours 2 hours Exam


Intended Learning Outcome After the completion of this course, the participants will be able to:

  • know the various water resources used for irrigated agriculture and their respective interdependencies.
  • know the relevant physical and chemical soil properties for irrigation, including leaching and drainage.
  • know the importance and demands for the various irrigated crops.
  • know the various irrigation methods, their effi ciencies and their influence on the soils and the groundwater.
  • Students are aware of the water use in irrigated agriculture in comparison with the other sectors and the relation to the IWRM-concept.
Content Introduction

  • Rainfed versus irrigated agriculture: global and regional importance regarding: water demand, economic, environmental and social impact and food security
  • IWRM relation: conflicts over land and water uses between agriculture and other sectors (housing, energy)
  • Water management at different scales: water uses, key-stakeholders, water user’s associations

Water use and productivity

  • Climatic factors and infl uences by climatic change
  • The role of eff ective rainfall

Soil Characteristics

  • Physical and chemical soil characteristics and their relation to soil water,irrigation and drainage.
  • The various approaches to determine the potential evapotranspiration (PET), the crop water and irrigation requirement as well as the pre-irrigation requirement
  • Non-point sources (NPS) of pollution (sediments, nutrients, pesticides, salinity,..)
  • Diagnosis of the salinisation process. Determinations of the leaching requirement and combination with the overall farm water requirement.

Irrigation, groundwater and drainage technologies and systems

  • Irrigation technologies and systems
  • Water resources for irrigation and their qualities
  • Water lifting devices, including pumps
  • Water storage, conveyance and distribution systems
  • Water losses and water use efficiencies (system and field)
  • Options to increase efficiencies

Water allocation principles in agriculture

  • Continuous versus intermittent irrigation
  • Irrigation on demand versus rotational irrigation
  • Deficit irrigation
  • Plant nutrients and fertilization management
  • Water re-use options
  • Organisational aspects of agriculture; participation, water user groups, water user associations
  • Maintenance of irrigation and drainage infrastructure
  • Environmental aspects
  • Water use conflicts in irrigation systems and outside; relation to IWRM concepts


Teaching Method Lectures and short presentations, project-based exercises
Assessment Method Mid Term Exam (35%), Mit Term Project (15%) Assignments (10%), Final Written Examination (40%)
Recommended Reading

Larry E.J.(1988). Principles of Farm Irrigation System Design. Published by Krieger Publishing Company.

Elizabeth M.S (1983). Hydrology in Practice. Published by Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. Limited United Kingdom.

Bennett H.H. (1947) Elements of Soil Conservation. McGraw-Hill, New York,

ALLEN, R. G. et al. (1998): Crop evapotranspiration. Guidelines for computing crop water requirements – FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper

FAO (1993): Prevention of water pollution by agricultural and related activities. Proceedings of the FAO Expert Consultation, Santiago, Chile, 20-23 October 1992 – FAO Water Reports, 1, 357 p., fi g., tab., Rome, 1993

FAO/UNESCO (1973): Irrigation, Drainage and Salinity – 510 p., fi g., tab., Hutchinson & Co. (Publishers) LTD, London, UK

WITHERS, B. & S. VIPOND (1974): Irrigation: design and practice

Version 31.05.2018