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Wessels, Josepha

Mrs., CMES
Lund University

Dr. Josepha Ivanka (Joshka) Wessels is a Senior Researcher at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES), Lund University, Sweden. * Syria expert, with particular expertise in media, rural development, water issues, refugees and environmental issues. * UNESCO-world expert on the rehabilitation of qanat systems in the MENA-region; traditional underground water tunnels. * Expert on environmental peacebuilding and hydropolitics in the Jordan River Basin. * Member of the Lund University Pufendorf Research Theme "Nature of Peace" (2017-2018). At CMES, she is currently carrying out research on Syrian Refugees in Europe, in particular Denmark, Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands. Since 2012, she has also engaged in social service activities with Syrian refugees, whom arrived in Sweden and Denmark. She carried out research and fieldwork with Syrians in the Ă–resund region in 2016, for a collaborative pilot project at CMES. Between 2014-2016 she carried out postdoctoral research on Syrian video activism and film with the University of Copenhagen, Previously, she carried out postdoctoral research on Hydropolitics in the Jordan River Basin between 2011-2014, within the framework of the CMES-Middle East in the Contemporary World (MECW) strategic research programme. For this project, she carried out fieldwork in the occupied West Bank and the occupied Golan Heights. As innovative methodology, Joshka developed an experiment game called "The Jordan River Basin Boardgame" to simulate water cooperation processes with stakeholders in the field. In 2015, her article "Challenging Hydro-hegemony: hydropolitics and local resistance in the Golan Heights and the Palestinian Territories" won the Prize for Best Essay on Environmental Peacebuilding for the International Journal for Environmental Studies (IJES). As an anthropological filmmaker, Joshka is an award-winning documentary filmmaker whose films have been broadcast on BBC World and Al Jazeera English. Her PhD thesis was accompanied with three films as well as her postdoctoral research on hydropolitics. Currently she is working on an anthropological feature film, documenting the lives of extended Syrian households in the Netherlands and Germany, with whom she has filmed 17 years ago in Syria. Joshka is a Senior Fellow of the Centre for Syria Studies (CSS) at the University of Saint Andrews, UK. She is also a member of the coordinating board of the Centre for Resolution of International Conflicts (CRIC) at the University of Copenhagen, the Middle East Studies Association (MESA), the Royal Anthropological Institute - UK (RAI) and the Dutch-based Grote Midden Oosten Platform.

Middle East/Near East Studies   
Arab-Israeli Conflict   
Conflict Resolution   
Diaspora/Refugee Studies   
Peace Studies   
Fertile Crescent   
All Middle East   
West Bank   
Syrian Refugees   
Syrian Documentary film and activism   
Sustainable development in MENA region   
Dutch (Native)   
Arabic (Advanced)   
English (Fluent)   
German (Intermediate)   
French (Intermediate)   
Swedish (Advanced)   
PhD2008Human GeographyUniversity of Amsterdam
MSSc1996Cultural AnthropologyLeiden university
Josepha Wessels

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