Discover the Water ChangeMaker Awards – and Share How You Changed Water Decisions!

The Water ChangeMaker Awards are a new initiative that seeks to highlight experiences in the way water decisions have built climate resilience. The initiative was launched on World Water Day 2020, March 22.

“We are launching the Water ChangeMaker Awards together with about 20 partner organizations at a time of global pain and uncertainty,” said GWP Executive Secretary Monika Weber-Fahr. “The world is fighting a health crisis, and the economic future of many people is at risk. Both need the attention of governments, businesses, and citizens around the world.”

James Dalton, Director for Water at IUCN, one of the ChangeMaker Partner organisations, said, "Now more than ever, smart decisions are needed on how we use and safeguard water and how we protect ourselves from water-related hazards, such as floods and droughts as climate change continues."

"In the midst of the crisis, we are therefore strengthening our support to those that have stories of success to share. This is why we are launching with our partners the Water ChangeMaker Awards," added Weber-Fahr. 

The purpose of the ChangeMaker Awards is to make visible the teams and organisations who shape water decisions that build climate resilience and are meant to stimulate:

  1. Recognition: of organisations and individuals that manage water in a climate resilient way;
  2. Solutions: to help water practitioners address their water management challenges;
  3. Collaboration: to promote and build a broader learning community.

The Changemaker Awards are a contribution to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Resilience Frontiers initiative. Organisations with an interest in promoting the purpose of the Awards – co-owners, knowledge partners, and strategic partners – have been invited to join.*

Submissions begin on April 6 and can be done in English, Spanish, French, Arabic, Russian, and Chinese. The submissions will be reviewed by an internationally recruited, independent jury led by water experts supported by the GWP Technical Committee. Winners will be announced including semi-finalists, finalists, and an overall winner. The Awards Ceremony will take place in the context of a climate-oriented event where winners will have special access to leaders in the climate community and become part of a learning cohort. In addition, winning entries will be featured in a publication to be launched in 2021.

There are thematic areas that the ChangeMaker Awards encourage, including: Water Decisions in leveraging Nature-Based Solutions for Climate Resilience; Building Integrity in Water Decisions; Mobilizing Women as Change Makers for Water Decisions; Mobilizing the Private Sector in supporting Water Decisions for Climate Resilience; and Mobilizing Youth as Change Makers for Water Decisions. The “journeys” towards such decisions will have involved changing mindsets from inertia to action; speaking truth to power; building new coalitions; changing laws or policies; mobilizing others to collaborate; and more.

The Water ChangeMaker Awards initiative is funded by the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and other GWP Financing Partners. More information:

* As of the launch, the following organisations are part of the Water ChangeMaker Awards:

Co-Owners: Alliance for Global Water Adaptation (AGWA), Alliance for Water Stewardship (A4WS), Cap-NetCEO Water Mandate, Global Water Operators' Partnerships Alliance (GWOPSA), International Network of Basin Organisations (INBO), International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), International Water Resources Association (IWRA), Water Integrity Network (WIN), Water Youth Network, Women for Water Partnership (WfWP), World Youth Parliament for Water (WYPW)

Knowledge Partners: Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)

Strategic Partners: African Agriculture Alliance, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), U.N. Development Programme (UNDP)The International Secretariat for Water (ISW)Global Environment Facility (GEF), Waterpreneurs, Water Aid