We are working with mid-career academics, researchers and practitioners to build research and policy engagement capacity in the Nu-Thanlwin-Salween River Basin focused on water, land and energy. 


Further information


Contact Dr Carl Middleton for further details.

Project Status: Ongoing

Salween-Mekong-Red Fellowship

Background to the Salween River

For over six million people, the Nu-Thanlwin-Salween River and its water resources are inextricably linked to local livelihoods and wellbeing, agricultural production and food security, and local economies. Recent processes of conflict transformation in the basin alongside regional economic integration, and socio-economic changes are all redefining the river basin’s development trajectory. There are, furthermore, plans for up to 20 dams along this transnational river.

To strengthen governance and increase the likelihood of sustainable and fair decisions, there is considerable need to build knowledge and research capacity within the basin, and to support research networks capable of informing the rapid changes underway.

The Fellowship program

The project has supported 13 research fellows through a mentored fellowship program, who have undertaken their research between June 2015 and December 2016. Over 2017, 8 selected fellows are producing journal articles and book chapters for publication.

Each research fellow was partnered with an experienced mentor for individual support, and also joined a series of three workshops on various aspects of research design, implementation and writing. The fellows addressed at least one of the following themes: Water Governance; Healthy Rivers; River Food Systems; Healthy Landscape and Ecosystems; and Gender and Social Justice (see WLE website for more details).

Each fellow aims to produce timely and needed research, and share their findings through producing a research report, a conference paper, a policy brief, and a blog. They have also joined national and international conferences and policy seminars.


This project’s goal is to strengthen the capacity for undertaking research and policy engagement of scholars and practitioners of water, land and energy use, management and governance in the Salween Basin. A particular cross-cutting focus of the project is research on gender and other forms of social marginalization. It also intends to build a learning community amongst these scholars and practitioners, and link them with similar initiatives in the Ayeyarwady, Mekong and Red River basins.

Cross-basin fellowship collaboration

The Nu-Thanlwin-Salween Fellowship program is partnered with parallel programs in the Mekong River basin and Red River basin.

The fellowship program has been supported by the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems Greater Mekong program, and Australian Aid.