Global Dialogue on Water Security and Sustainable Growth

A secure water world is emerging as a top human development priority in the Post-2015 Development Agenda. But to truly deliver secure and sustainable water for all, policy makers need sound evidence connecting water security to economic growth and development.

The Global Water Partnership (GWP) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have launched a Global Dialogue on Water Security and Sustainable Growth to highlight the evidence of the different development paths that countries can follow, based upon their water resources endowment.

The project coincides with the work of the UN in developing the Post-2015 Development Agenda. It builds on GWP’s recent water thematic consultation and its contribution to the preparation of a UN-Water paper on recommendations for a global water goal. It also builds on OECD’s recent work on Water Security for Better Lives.

Goal and Objectives

The goal of The Global Dialogue is to promote and accelerate a transition to water security, connecting policy makers and practitioners through evidence-based global and country-level consultations on water security and sustainable growth.

The project will draw attention to the relevance of water security to economic development within the post-2015 development framework and coincides with the process of United Nation’s Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals.

Country Consultations are being undertaken to link with an expert Task Force of economists and also with a High Level Panel, enabling participants to engage in evidence-based discussions about the economic implications of alternative pathways toward water security.

The Global Dialogue will result in a milestone report on "Water Security and Sustainable Growth" to be presented at the World Water Forum in South Korea in 2015.

The Country Consultations

To investigate perceptions and priorities regarding water security, country consultations are taking place in more than 30 countries, facilitated by the Global Water Partnership. Most of the countries invited to be part of the consultation have a seat on the UN’s open working group on the Sustainable Development Goals.

Country consultations ran from February 2014 to April 2014, and the results from these will feed guidance and information into the Task Force and High Level Panel. A preliminary summary of the country consultations is available.

The Expert Task Force

An Expert Task Force on Water Security and Sustainable Growth has been established, comprising a multi-disciplinary team of leading economists, water managers and scientists.

This task force will build the case for global action to address water-related risks by quantifying the impacts of water insecurity and documenting the benefits of risk reduction, and by demonstrating how alternative pathways to water security can be implemented. This new knowledge will enable countries to better understand and manage water risks, and ensure that efforts to promote economic growth and development are not jeopardized by these risks.

The Expert Task Force is co-chaired by Dr. Claudia Sadoff and Professors David Grey and Jim Hall (Oxford University).

The High Level Policy Panel

A High Level Policy Panel is being convened to address the concerns and priorities of top-level policy makers with regards to water security and sustainable growth. Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia and UN Goodwill Ambassador for Water and Sanitation, and Mr Angel Gurría, OECD, will co-chair the High Level Panel. 

The Global Dialogue Process

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