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Francesca de Châtel

Born in Amsterdam and raised in Brussels, Francesca trained as an architect and journalist in the UK.

Her fascination with water and the Middle East started when she travelled through the Middle East and North Africa in 2001, exploring the historical, cultural and political value of water in this arid region. Following extensive travel and research between 2001 and 2005, Francesca published a non-fiction general audience book, Water Sheikhs and Dam Builders, Stories of People and Water in the Middle East, which was published in 2007.

Francesca lived in the Syrian capital Damascus from 2006 until 2010, where she worked as the managing editor and editor-in-chief of Syria Today, an independent English-language current affairs magazine. During this period she continued to write about different aspects of water and scarcity in Syria and in the region.

As an editor and project manager, Francesca has worked on a range of water-related publications and projects. Her editorial approach is strongly focused on translating the complexity of the Middle East water question into formats that are accessible and appealing to a wide audience of non-experts.

Francesca is currently based in Amsterdam. She recently obtained her doctoral degree and continues to work as an editor, researcher and writer with a focus on water in the Mediterranean Basin.