Thirsty Cities In War

About the Author

Written By: Giorgio Nembrini


Assessment of complex situations. Coordination of emergency and post-emergency programs.

Negotiation with authorities at ministerial level and down to the practitioners level. Evaluation of programs.
Management of complex emergencies in the field of water and sanitation and related fields ( Drinking water installations and networks, waste water evacuation, displaced people and refugee camps layouts, reconstruction of damaged facilities, control of epidemics (cholera, outbreaks of vector borne diseases), expertise in prison’s conditions, floods emergencies.
Geographical information systems (Arcview 3.2, ArcGIS 9.2, Spatial analyst, 3D Analyst), Microsoft Office, Coreldraw 11 and Adobe Photoshop 6.0, Digital imaging.
Teaching intervention strategies. Production of brochures, manuals and organization of workshops.
Assessments of pest contamination and pest control in commodities.

2007 – 2010
Various consultancies and desk studies:
Gaza: 2009- 2010
Study of the water situation within the Gaza strip before and after the “cast lead” war .
Haïti: November – December 2010
Implementation of cholera control measures in Cité soléil (Port au Prince) Mapping of all water distribution points and network.
Nigeria: July- August 2010
Assessment of the potential IDP’s holding camps in 5 states. Water supply systems for schools in villages where IDP’s were relocated. Set-up of emergency’s stocks at the different Red Cross Branches.
Ethiopia: November 2009
Tigray shallow wells program. ICRC management of the program using GIS and Institutional support in GIS for the Tigray water board (1 ½ months).
Burundi: May June 2009.
Assessment of 10 gravity fed supply systems and definition of the wat/hab program (2 months)
Myanmar: ICRC Coordination of the ICRC intervention following the NARGIS cyclone. Post-cyclone assistance to 50,000 people (2 months).
Yemen: September 2008
Follow-up of the activities in Saada: network of the town of Dhamyan, water supply systems for several villages (1 ½ month).
Yemen: August 2007.
Assessment of the wat/hab needs in Saada (1 ½ months). Additional submersible pump and generator for the town water supply system.
2002 to 2007
Regional coordinator for East Africa and the Great-lakes. Based in Nairobi. Assessment of complex situations, definition of objectives, management of programs, conferences. Coordination of programs in Kenya (West Pokot, Turkana, Lamu islands, Tana river) in Zanzibar (Unguja and Pemba) and in Djibouti (Balbela suburb)
Coordination during the 2nd Gulf war in Basra (April 2003)
from April 20 to May 18
Jerusalem: Assessment of the Water and Habitat situation of towns and villages in the West-Bank, for the ICRC. Plan of action, database and GIS coverage.
From November 2001 to February 2002.
Coordination of the water and habitat program of the ICRC in Afghanistan (Kabul, Herat, Kandahar, Jalalabad and Mazar-I-Sharif area. Liaison with other Humanitarian actors (UNICEF, DFID, HABITAT, CARE and NGO’s).
From October to December
Redefinition of the objectives of the ICRC Water and habitat program in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
August. Evaluation of the program of the Swiss Development and Cooperation Agency in Kosovo.
1998 to 2001
Independent consultant. Research project: “Cities in war, thirsty cities”: water supply problems in war torn
cities, sponsored by the Geneva Foundation. Studies carried out in the following towns: Mogadishu (Somalia),
Dili (East Timor), Novi Sad (former Yugoslavia), Sarajevo (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Beirut (Lebanon), Kabul
Afghanistan), Goma, Kisangani, Bukavu, Uvira (DRC), Bujumbura (Burundi), Huambo (Angola), Monrovia
(Liberia), Kigali (Rwanda) in the context of the ICRC activities. Geo-referencing and 3D models at DIMU
(Data management and information unit), UNDP Somalia, in Nairobi.
Technical coordination of the brochure “War and Water”. Handbook ” Water, Wastes and Habitat in prisons” in French, 2004. (English, August 2005).
1995 -1997
Regional coordinator for East Africa and the Great-lakes. Based in Nairobi. Assessment of complex situations, definition of objectives, management of programs, conferences.
1983 – 1995
International Committee of the Red Cross. Started the water and sanitation section in 1983. Head of the section until 1995. Carried out missions to 50 countries (list on request). Activities in 18 countries, 4 engineers at the headquarters and about 40 in the different theatres of operation. Organization of the workshop: Water and war, held in Montreux in 1994 and coordination of the proceedings.

1978 – 1983
Senior lecturer at the University of Geneva. Direction of diploma studies and Ph.D. research projects. Study of the mobilization of trace metals between sediments and overlying waters in eutrophic lakes and in sea estuaries (lac Léman, Lago Maggiore, lac de Bret and Baie de Villefranche (Mediterranean Sea).
1977- 1978
Post-doctoral fellowship at the Canada Center for Inland Waters. Great lakes monitoring and surveillance
campaigns. Mobilization of trace metals in sediments in function of the quality of the overlying water in lakes.
1976 -1977
Coordinator of the Environmental Analytical Chemistry Certificate at the University of Geneva.
1971 – 1976
Ph.D. thesis and teaching at student level.
List on request