Dirección General de Aguas (DGA)

Interview with Ms Ma Angélica Alegría, Chief of the New Water Sources Creation and Water Users Organizations development division, Dirección General de Aguas (DGA) and Chair of GWP Chile.

What is the vision and mission of your organisation?

Ma Angelica

Chile’s General Water Department (DGA) is a public entity responsible of promoting the water resources’ management and administration in a sustainable framework, public interest and efficient allocation, providing and disseminating the information generated by their hydrometric network, in order to contribute to the country's competitiveness and improve the people’s life quality.

The DGA's strategic definitions are:

  1. To solve requirements related to the use and conservation of water resources, using sustainability and transparency criteria, through the provision of information and implementation of timely and reliable processes and procedures.
  2. To promote the use of water resources in accordance with current legislation, through the exercise of police and surveillance of natural channels, according to the existing faculties, and promoting, strengthening and control of the users’ organizations.
  3. To ensure the environmental role of water resources and contribute to improving the people´s life quality through the Service’s environmental pronouncements.
  4. To promote sustainable and equitaty water resources use through the provision of indicative planning and general information.

Why did you decide to become a GWP Partner

It was necessary to insert the Chilean government agency, responsible for water resources, in the international arena so as to contextualize its action with modern and homogeneous lines, according with the rest of the world

Which are the benefits of being a GWP Partner?

Basically the exchange of experiences and the possibility of developing emerging issues aimed at sustainable water management to enable countries, at different levels, to solve its challenges and problems related to water.

What is one challenge facing the management of water resources in your region?

Climate change, the progress of arid areas towards the south of Chile, the increasing population, economic growth and other variabilities that generate a great pressure on water resources and which need environmental, social, economical and cultural sustainable solutions. Our country is just moving in that direction, but certainly it requires more concrete and specific analysis and action plans, all of which we have to start implementing.

Are there any special projects or initiatives that you would like more widely known?

As mentioned above, everything related with facing climate change, how to implement water use efficiency, how to develop and support the creation of new water sources (rain water capture, artificial aquifers recharge, wastewater reuse, desalination, etc.), how to reduce the water footprint, how to solve the challenge of managing groundwater and its relationship with surface water, how we develop the concept of water human right together with economic development, how we educate the citizenship on these issues, how to insert the water issue in nations agenda; these are some of the topics we would like to develop and understand.


Ma Angélica Alegría Calvo is an hydraulic civil engineer and works since 1985 in the General Water Department (DGA) of the Ministry of Public Works in Chile, where she held several positions: Chief of the National Hydrometric Service, chief of the National Initiative for Water Efficiency, currently serving as chief of the New Water Sources Creation and Water Users Organizations development’ division. She has been a member of the GWPO Steering Committee and is now Chair of GWP Chile.