2.1.1. About the second module of Water Works

Course subject(s) 2. Water under the bridge: What is water culture?

Welcome to Module 2 of Water Works!

Last module we learned that water is a system. Over many centuries people have lived with water, using it as a foundation to build settlements, to produce food, for trade and energy. They have carefully shaped waterworks to both benefit from water and to protect themselves from it. They have adapted to the geography and topography of the site. They have created extensive infrastructures to channel the flows of water and to control its quality, using it for drinking and irrigation. They have harnessed water for energy and for shipping. They have taken care of discarding and often reusing wastewater for food production or industry. They have developed structures to defend themselves against rain, floods, or drought. These spatial systems were carefully embedded in local governance and cultural practices. What people built hundreds of years ago sometimes still determines how we live and what we say or do today. Modernization and industrialization have introduced new water spaces and practices, often leading to the destruction or rebuilding of historical spaces.

Rapid transformation and the loss of historical structures and practices led to the emergence of preservation movements. Since the nineteenth and more importantly since the mid-twentieth century, individuals, institutions, and communities have stood up to protect old houses, streets and neighborhoods under the name of ‘heritage’.

In this module you will explore different historical water systems and assess how societies in the past and present have lived with water. Then you will analyze the historical evolution of the water system in your own case.

Good luck and enjoy!

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Water Works: Activating Heritage for Sustainable Development by TU Delft OpenCourseWare is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://online-learning.tudelft.nl/courses/water-works-activating-heritage-for-sustainable-development//
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