Thursday, 10 September 2015

Internship Experience at the United Nations University- Institute for Water, Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH)

By Oluwabusola Olaniyan, 1st year MDP student

“Our environment must be protected by all means!” This has been my song since I became aware of the words “climate change” and “sustainability.”  In fact, the dynamic interactions between us, our environment and the earth as a whole are fascinating, but worrisome is the rocketing nature of humankind towards an unrecognisable existence. Therefore, it is imperative to understand and address environmental issues beyond the local, state, and national levels into an international level and this work experience is what I acquired in UNU-INWEH as a research intern.

In fulfilment of my study plan and towards earning an academic credit for the partial fulfilment of my Master’s program, I served as a secondary research intern at the Water and Human Development sector of the UNU-INWEH, an organisation that acts as the “United Nations’ Think Tank on water.”

My research examined global wastewater production and statistically analysed the results of the study. The credible research outcomes are relevant to respond directly to regional and global water crisis that facilitate efforts to meet UN Development goals. To an extent, the research results provide scientifically based evidence and knowledge to help resolve the global pressing water needs and thus, accelerate solutions to world challenges at the interface of water and development practice. The significance of the research is the centrality of water to sustainable development. Basically for the research, data were collected, organized, mined, managed, synthesized and analysed using excel spreadsheets and the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). This way, the data analysis and synthesis provided insights, taking the research beyond pure facts. 

One of the most significant aspects of my internship was being surrounded by a network of passionate people whose main mission is to make differences in society by providing effective solutions through research methods. This allowed me to learn more from them, and helped me to understand the necessity to apply research for resolving problems in development matters. 

Finally, I was presented with a distinction award for the successful completion of the research.

UNU-INWEH Director, Dr. Zafar Adeel presenting award to Oluwabusola .

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