In 2018, World Water Week will focus on the very basis of our existence: the ecosystems on which all life depends, and the critical role of water in their functions. Experts, practitioners, decision-makers, business innovators and young professionals from a range of sectors and countries come to Stockholm to network, exchange ideas, foster new thinking and develop solutions to the most pressing water-related challenges of today.
The systems perspective – water and ecosystems from source to sea: Whether in rural or urban areas, in mountains or near the coast, we all live in river basins in which upstream developments affect downstream conditions. We need to understand and manage these river basins, and the ecosystems within them as one inter-dependent system.
The development perspective – balancing green and grey solutions: Nature-based solutions, and “green” investments, that take advantage of the natural systems and processes can create win-win situations that provide economic and societal benefits while maintaining ecosystem integrity or even improving environmental conditions.
The human and social perspective – a people’s agenda: Human health and well-being depend on how we manage and protect the natural systems around us. Respect for ecosystems values require understanding of their vital role in sustaining life and underpinning development. It particularly concerns human health, as communities caught in the poverty trap may be forced to use their natural resources base unsustainably.
The economic perspective – rethinking ecosystems values: In the spirit of a circular economy our approach to development and growth needs to be increasingly multi-facetted and green. Investments in infrastructure, whether built or natural, as well as payment for ecosystem services, must be based on a proper assessment of environmental and social ecosystem cost and benefits.
The governance perspective – towards integrated water and ecosystems management: While our ecosystems underpin all development, they also represent competing demands for water among the human needs for water supply, food, energy and other uses. Good water and ecosystem governance is at the heart of sustainable development.
Access here the full programme.