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29 June 2018


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In alignment with the NDU mission to encourage sustainability and care for the environment, both on and off campus, the University is eager to participate in a research competition to win the bid for the USAID-funded “Water Project in Lebanon (LWP).” This program aims to increase access to clean, reliable and sustainable sources of drinking water for Lebanese citizens.


The main objectives of the LWP are to:

  • Strengthen and improve service delivery and resource management at the water authorities;
  • Enhance the efficiency and sustainability of the public water utilities and respond to water issues arising from the influx of Syrian refugees;
  • Promote better water governance to assure the long-term protection of Lebanon’s water resources; and
  • Improve civic engagement and private sector participation in water management.


USAID has issued a call inviting graduates/undergraduates (individuals or teams, preferably teams) of students faculty to participate in a competition for the best research project on water in Lebanon.  The goal is to raise awareness of academia on the deplorable status of water in Lebanon and to create a platform that engages universities, students, and faculty in the management of the sector.  

With mismanagement of water resources running rampant, lack of awareness and disengagement from civil society and academia, and the adverse effects of climate change, the LWP deemed it necessary to launch this research competition involving the unusual subjects of economics, behavioral sciences, sociology, communication, political science, eco-citizenship religion, etc.    


For Universities

a) The university can demonstrate a proven track record of an ongoing research program or quality research production.
b) The university committed to support the research initiative with possible prospects to sustain it.
c) Faculty members are made available to review proposals and research papers.
d) Students are available to do the research and finish it within a one-year period.

For Students

a) Registered students (individuals or teams) teamed up with faculty.
b) Fluent in written and spoken English.
c) Although Humanities are the main focus, all other Faculties are urged to apply. Groups formed from different Faculties are highly encouraged.  


The suggested research topics:
1- Perception of payment of tariffs for water and wastewater services.
2- Citizen duties and obligations in the water sector.
3- Most effective education/awareness raising/behavior changing tools for creating the “model water citizen”.
4- Economics of water conservation and protection.
5- Readiness, barriers, challenges and opportunities of people in engaging in water management.
6- Possibility of improving partnerships between local authorities and water establishments (availability of legal texts, current governance model…).
7- Feasibility of natural wastewater treatment systems in Lebanon at the national scale with a particular attention to rural areas.
8- Financing mechanisms for water and wastewater in Lebanon.
9- Readiness and appetite of the private sector in engaging in water and wastewater management in Lebanon.
10- The effect of water quality and quantity on tourism. How water-saving technology and processes save money and improve business outcomes especially in tourism.


The evaluation criteria for research proposals are straightforward. For example, the topic and output should fit the LWP and be within the suggested topics. Also, the research is of a practical nature and the result should be beneficial to the LWP and the water sector. Other criteria include clarity of structure and subject and/or problematic and proposed solutions. All evidence presented must be substantiated and the project must be completed within a one-year period.


Kindly note some important conditions:
i) Submitted research proposals should be 1,000-1,500 words and in English.
ii) Students are expected to submit a research working paper.
iii) The award is for a maximum of US$5,000 for the selected research proposals.

Deadline to submit proposals should be no later than September 1, 2018, at 4.00 p.m. Beirut time to be sent to


The following timeline summarizes the entire procedure:
i) Research competition launch:  July 2, 2018.
ii) Proposals submission deadline: September 1, 2018.
iii) Selected proposals announcement: November 1, 2018.
iv) Draft working research paper submission: July 1, 2019
v) Final working paper submission:  September 1, 2019.
vi) Presentation of results: October 2019.

Based on the above, you are all encouraged to contact us the soonest so that we can begin forming teams and discussing the research we should perform on this subject.


Under the competition’s terms and conditions, up to four winning teams may receive a fund of $5,000 to $10,000.
To learn more about the LWP competition, you are strongly encouraged to attend an “Information Session,” which will be held on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in Pierre Abou Khater Hall, Zouk Campus.


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