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9th World Water Forum

21 - 26 March 2022
Dakar Senegal



The Water Convention Secretariat (UNECE) will be involved in several sessions of the 9th World Water Forum (21-26 March 2022 / Dakar, Senegal).

In particular, the Water Convention Secretariat is contributing to the coordination of Ordinary Thematic Sessions of Action Group 3B “Implement transboundary cooperation to foster peace and prevent conflicts” and the Keystone Roundtable discussion for Priority 3 on “Cooperation”. Additionally, UNECE is contributing the organisation of the Pavilion on Transboundary Water Cooperation, which will run for the whole duration of the Forum, and the Basins Organizations’ Segment for Water Security, organised by INBO.

For more information about the relevant sessions, please consult the list below. Please note that the sessions schedule is subject to change.

For more information and updates regarding the full programme of the World Water Forum, check the event’s official webpage.

Time & Location Session title and details Flyer / Programme



Room 10

High-Level Panel 22: The exchange between transboundary aquifers on three continents

Groundwater is the main resource of freshwater that is available and accessible. Good governance of its management is key to water security. Nevertheless, the management of groundwater resources doesn’t receive enough attention. Yet, management alone is not enough; it is also essential to optimise water use, which is what the SMAB project is about. Decisive steps have been taken in the Senegal-Mauritania Aquifer Basin (SMAB):   

  • Establishment of a common follow-up by the 4 SMAB countries and the elaboration of a project developed and supported by the countries.  
  • The basin agencies (OMVS, OMVG) are involved in the project  

This special session will allow for an exchange of experience between the SMAB and the first aquifer where a transboundary cooperation agreement was made (the Genevois, 40 years of history), as well as the large Guarani aquifer.

Organizers: OMVG, Geneva Water Hub, UNECE, Global Observatory for Water and Peace




Room 5

Session 3B3: Promoting transboundary governance by building capacity and sustainable institutions to peacefully manage water resource 

This session aims to explore the ways in which governance frameworks can help to provide sustainably financed institutions, foster cooperation and deliver shared benefits to water users across basins. It will explore basin wide planning and benefit sharing at scale in the Mekong; the role of youth and women in sustaining governance of institutions at multiple scales; and how linking natural sciences, culture, education and social sciences in the Lake Chad is championing environmental sustainability for institutional stability and peace.

Lead Organizer: IUCN

  • Mekong River Commission





Room 7

Session 3B1: Implement transboundary cooperation to foster peace and prevent conflicts 

Water as a tool for cooperation, peace, and stability: how can transboundary water cooperation and dialogue better serve as a tool for peace?

This session seeks to present several tools and mechanisms for dialogue and cooperation over transboundary water resources, and the levers they can bring to foster stability and prevent tensions within the communities.

Lead Organizer: Geneva Water Hub

  • Turkish Water Institute-SUEN
  • Ibrahim Abd El Al Foundation for Sustainable Development



Room 4

Session 3B2: Promoting peace by developing and implementing legal frameworks for transboundary water resources 

Transboundary water cooperation is one of the bedrocks of international security since it has proven spill-over economic and peace benefits beyond the water sector. It is thus important to advance cooperation on shared water resources to promote peace. One of the well-tested and tried ways of advancing water cooperation is through the establishment and implementation of legal frameworks for transboundary water resources. This session is aimed at highlighting the tools and instruments for advancing such cooperation available for policy and decision-makers, including the United Nations global Water Conventions.

Lead Organizer: UNECE
Co-Organizers: Geneva Water Hub and INBO



Room 6

Session 3B4: Promoting sustainable development by improving knowledge and governance of transboundary groundwater resources 

The session will present global initiatives and concrete examples of cooperation over groundwater resources of transboundary aquifers contributing to foster cooperation and preventing conflicts.

Lead Organizers: UNESCO-IHP and UNECE
Co-Organizers: IGRAC, ORASECOM, SADC-GMI, Sahara and Sahel Observatory and Geneva Water Hub



Room 7

Session 3B5: Promoting knowledge and tools for collaboration and benefit-sharing on transboundary water resources

This session will present successful cases in which knowledge and tools are fostering transboundary cooperation on surface and groundwater resources worldwide, for improved management, collaboration and shared benefits.

Lead Organizers: UNESCO-IHP and GWP
Co-Organizers: UNECE, Ministry of Water of China



Oval room

Basin Organizations’ Segment on Water Security 

For the first time on the program of the World Water Forum, a day will be dedicated to the management of water resources by basin.

National or transboundary, basin organizations are by construction multi-actor platforms. They are places of dialogue, between countries at the transboundary level, between water users and actors at the sub-national level. In order to accelerate the achievement of SDGs 6.5.1 and 6.5.2, it is important to develop these two scales of sharing and solidarity.

The segment includes the adoption of the Dakar action plan for basins, which will set out the Forum’s political declaration, and feed into the content of the New York water conference in March 2023.

Lead organizer: INBO
Co-organizers: OMVS, OMVG, Switzerland, UNECE




Keystone Roundtable – Priority “Cooperation”

The programme of the 9th World Water Forum includes 23 ordinary thematic sessions dedicated to the discussions on Priority 3 – Cooperation. These sessions focus on the important role of cooperation in ensuring sustainable and peaceful management of water resources. This Keystone Roundtable discusses the main outcomes of the OTSs, including the commitments and recommendations for concrete actions to be implemented, and the potential actors to be involved to achieve the short-term and long-term goals of improving water cooperation.

Organizers: UNECE, OMVS, OMVG, Korea Water Forum, INBO, SDC, POSCEA, Ministry of Water and Sanitation of Senegal, European Commission, GWP, World Youth Parliament for Water, ICLEI Africa