Water Europe at the 10th World Water Forum 2024: A catalyst for a Global Water-Smart Society


Water Europe’s participation in the 10th World Water Forum in Bali marked a significant milestone in our commitment to advancing the principles of the Value of Water and promoting a Water-Smart Society on a global scale. The highlight of our engagement was our showcase in the Water4All partnership and our contributions as speakers in four key sessions of the Forum. By advocating for circular economy principles, we emphasized Water Europe’s vision of a Water-Smart Society, where water is valued, and water ecosystems are resilient, secure, sustainable, and accessible to all.

As the leader of Pillar D of Water4All, Water Europe took center stage at the Partnership’s booth. A special day dedicated to Water4All on May 22nd featured Water Europe’s governance of Pillar D, highlighting the collaboration framework and strategic goals. We emphasized the concept and role of Water-Oriented Living Labs (WOLLs) for a Water-Smart Society, both within the EU and from an international collaboration perspective. Additionally, we launched the new Atlas and Network of WOLLs 2024 during a well-attended public event. Presentations from the Lisbon Water Smart Living Lab and the WaterClimateHub showcased innovative approaches to water management and resilience.

In collaboration with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Water Europe led discussions in the session “What Goes Around Comes Around: Applying a Circular Lens to Water Policies.” This session focused on the application of circular economy principles to water management and their policy impacts. Through collaborative efforts with other speakers, we explored pathways to enhance inclusive governance and accelerate the adoption of innovative policy and governance models globally via the Water-Oriented Living Labs approach.

Water Europe showcased the pivotal role of Water-Oriented Living Labs in addressing water challenges across urban, industrial, and rural contexts in the session “Challenges and Opportunities for Applying Smart Water Management.” Alongside UNESCO and TU Delft, Water Europe also shared organizational innovations and best practices in the session “Transformative Change for the Future Water-Smart Society by Linking Science, Policy, and Action.” By bridging science, policy, and action, we demonstrated how collaborative efforts in WOLLs can catalyze systemic transformations toward sustainable water management.

Lastly, in partnership with the European Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the Turkish Water Institute (SUEN), Water Europe led discussions in the session “One Health: Linking Water for Humans and Nature through Water Quality at a Basin Scale.” We highlighted the interconnectedness of human health, environmental integrity, and water quality, advocating for cross-sectoral collaboration and inclusive governance. Through case studies and dialogue, we emphasized the role of innovative concepts and technology adoption in progressing toward a Water-Smart Society.

For more information, please contact Andrea Rubini.


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