Archive for October, 2013

October 14, 2013

Mozambiquan Lady wins 2013 L’Oréal-UNESCO Fellowship Award

UNESCO-IHE and
WaterSan Perspective
October 14, 2013

A PhD Fellow Aline Saraiva Okello has been awarded the 2013 L’Oréal-UNESCO Sub-Saharan Fellowship Award.

She received a fellowship worth €15,000 to put forwards her PhD research on hydrology and water resources management in her home country Mozambique.

The awarding ceremony took place in Johannesburg South-Africa.

“This prestigious award opens a new platform for me to encourage other women and young people to pursue their careers in research”, Aline says.

Her work is being undertaken as part of the RISKOMAN (Risk-based operational water management for the Incomati River Basin) project, which aims to improve water management in the transboundary Incomati river basin in southern Africa. “I’m using tracers, remote sensing and hydrological modeling to better understand hydrological processes in the Incomati river basin, particularly those related with runoff generation processes, to inform and support improved operational water management in the basin. This would improve water management and governance, and ultimately contribute to reducing the vulnerability of several stakeholders who depend on water for their food security and the ecosystem services of the river for their livelihoods.”

PhD Fellow Aline Saraiva Okello in the middle receiving her ward

PhD Fellow Aline Saraiva Okello in the middle receiving her ward

Aline has a clear view on which actions should be undertaken in order to improve water management in Africa. “I believe we need many more people engaged in science and scientific research in Africa in order to tackle the many challenges we face”, she explains. “We need science and innovation to break through poverty in a sustainable manner. And by completing my PhD, I would be in a position to better influence the research that is done in Southern Africa, contribute to capacity building, and help advocating better practices in water resources management.”

The L’Oreal-UNESCO Fellowships for Women in Science is aim to increase the participation of women in the field of science. “This is very important, because there are not so many women in science, especially women with young children”, says Aline.

You can find more information on UNESCO-IHE

October 14, 2013

The 2013 Budapest Water Summit Highlights

Fredrick Mugira
October 13, 2013

The three day Budapest Water Summit came to an end on Friday, 11 October after almost a week of interesting activities all aimed at discussing, in particular the development of water-related goals for the post-2015 development agenda.

The summit in the fine-looking capital of Hungary brought together high-level representatives from government, international organizations, civil society and academia.

During the Opening Session of Budapest Water Summit

During the Opening Session of Budapest Water Summit

It was characterized by a Summit Plenary, Science Forum, Civil Society Forum, Youth Forum and a Business Leaders Forum.

During the sessions and high-level panels, several issues were discussed. These included among others : striving for universal access to water and sanitation; addressing water, sanitation and hygiene issues; implementing integrated water resources management (IWRM) for the 21st century; serving a growing population with water in a changing climate; addressing the water-energy-food nexus; implementing good water governance; governing water wisely with smart SDGs; enabling a green economy for blue water; investing and financing to address the global water and sanitation crisis and related SDG; and leveraging finance.

As the summit came to an end during Friday evening, a plenary discussed the Budapest Water Summit outcome document titled “The Budapest Water Summit Statement: A Sustainable World is a Water Secure World.”

The statement was later adopted.

In particular, this statement calls for development of a dedicated and comprehensive Sustainable Development Goal on water, a “Water-Secure World.”

Key speakers during this summit included the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. In his remarks, Ban highlighted the importance of water in sustainable development: “Water holds the key to sustainable development. We need it for health, food security and economic progress…“We must address unsustainable use… We must use what we have more equitably and wisely. We cannot expect governments to do this alone. Guaranteeing a water secure world will require the full engagement of all actors, not least the world of business.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Addressing the Budapest Water Summit

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Addressing the Budapest Water Summit

Margaret Chan, the Director General of World Health Organization, argued that improving Water, Sanitation and Hygiene services is a: “proper strategy on a grand scale.” She also lamented that the limited political power of women means that some of the most powerful advocates of WASH have no voice.

Margaret Chan, the Director General of World Health Organization addressing the Budapest Water Summit

Margaret Chan, the Director General of World Health Organization addressing the Budapest Water Summit

Bai Mass Taal, the Executive Secretary of African Ministers’ Council on Water highlighted the need for integrating science and policy to create a coherent message on WASH to input into the post-2015 development agenda process. He also called for the need for political leaders to prioritize access to water and wondered how long the world shall watch people die from lack of access to water.

Bai Mass Taal, the Executive Secretary of African Ministers’ Council on Water

Bai Mass Taal, the Executive Secretary of African Ministers’ Council on Water

Speaking during the youth forum, Andras Szollosi-Nagy, the Rector UNESCO-IHE noted that coordination or how to put together the stakeholders in WASH sector is what appears to be the challenge of the day that can give an opportunity for Water Youth Network to act on. He also advised the youths to grasp the communication channel to get their messages across.

Andras Szollosi-Nagy, the Rector UNESCO-IHE

Andras Szollosi-Nagy, the Rector UNESCO-IHE

The youths received various statements of encouragement from experts such as : “finding your passion, finding your voice”, “you are setting unambitious goals; there are a lot of voices out there. Connect, and make them so loud together that we can make a change”, and “youth seem to be able to communicate across boundaries. We are hopeful for the things you can achieve.”

Rozemarijn ter Horst, Founder, Water Youth Movement

Rozemarijn ter Horst, Founder, Water Youth Movement

In the civil society, discussants including Ella Antonio Ella Antonio, the President of the Earth Council Asia-Pacific and Fredrick Mugira, Coordinator of Water Journalists Africa Network called for better strategies to have the Budapest Water Summit outcome document interpreted and communicated to the common people on grassroots effectively for better understanding and action.

Fredrick Mugira, Coordinator of Water Journalists Africa Network speaks in the Civil Society Forum. On his left is Ella Antonio Ella Antonio, President of the Earth Council Asia-Pacific

Fredrick Mugira, Coordinator of Water Journalists Africa Network speaks in the Civil Society Forum. On his left is Ella Antonio Ella Antonio, President of the Earth Council Asia-Pacific

October 4, 2013

World Leaders Meet for Water Summit in Budapest

WaterSan Perspective Reporter
October 04, 2013

Water policy goals for a sustainable future will be at the top of the agenda when 1200 participants get together in Hungary for the Budapest Water Summit 8-11 October.

A delegation from Global Water Partnership- GWP will emphasize the need for a dedicated water goal on the post-2015 agenda.

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GWP Chair Dr. Ursula Schaefer-Preuss took part in a UN Special Event in New York last week, where the successor arrangements to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were discussed. Dr. Schaefer-Preuss underlined strong support for a dedicated water goal to be part of the future Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This discussion will continue in Budapest, and one of the key messages that GWP will deliver is the crucial element of cooperation, as the summit is organized under the umbrella of the UN Year for International Water Cooperation 2013.

“Collectively, GWP partners and allies are promoters of change: changing the way we manage water. To do that means turning non-cooperation on water into cooperation on water”, says Dr. Schaefer-Preuss.

High-level Participants

The Budapest Water Summit will provide a forum to facilitate consensus building amongst stakeholders concerning water and sanitation policy goals. Among several high-level participation from the UN Member States, agencies and bodies, UN Secretary General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon will deliver one of the opening speeches together with the President of Hungary, Mr. János Áder.

BWS_BudapestWaterSummit_Logo_Angol

The Summit aims to contribute to the elaboration of the water-related Sustainable Development Goals and provide concrete guidance on the most pressing water issues – drinking water, sanitation, waste water treatment, integrated water management, international water cooperation, and innovative water technologies – with a view to defining the priorities of global development policy post 2015.

GWP’s representatives will participate in panels and sessions of the summit, and there will be a GWP stand in the Expo area.

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