Special Issue "Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water–Food–Energy Nexus".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2019.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Guillermo Donoso Harris
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Guest Editor
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Interests: water allocation; water rights markets; collective water management; water pricing; governance; groundwater management
Prof. Jennie Barron
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Guest Editor
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU)
Interests: agricultural water management; food security; landscape hydrology; sustainability; resilience; climate change; human wellbeing
Prof. Stefan Uhlenbrook
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Guest Editor
International Water Management Institute (IWMI)
Interests: Water and development; hydrological processes; SDG 6 interlinkages; global change and water; climate change, sustainability, catchment hydrology
Dr. Hussam Hussein
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Guest Editor
University of Kassel
Interests: hydropolitics; discourse analysis; Middle East; water policy; transboundary water governance
Prof. Gyewoon Choi
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Guest Editor
Incheon National University
Interests: smart water; flood resilience; smart water city; water stewardship; climate change adaptation; sustainable development; water supply; water security; global partnership; water industry

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

After more than three years of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the 2019 World Water Week in Stockholm has chosen to focus on inclusiveness with the theme “Water for society–Including all”. This is also the theme of this Special Issue that will bring together the scientific highlights presented during the week. Access to safe water and sanitation for all is essential for eradicating poverty, building peaceful and prosperous societies, and ensuring that ‘no one is left behind’ on the road towards sustainable development. The United Nations World Water Development Report 2019 concluded that these goals are entirely achievable, provided exclusion and inequality are addressed in both policy and practice, but this needs new science and effective ways to ensure implementation, bridging the science–policy gap.

Topics to be addressed include, but are not limited to, acute water scarcity for individuals and societies, water justice, lack of access to safe water supply and sanitation, food and energy insecurity, exposure to catastrophic weather extremes, and pathways to secure inclusive and resilient development. Inequality of access to and the benefits of water security can be found in all parts of society from the household and local community level, to landscape and global settings. Evidence shows that often the people who are furthest behind—e.g., people who experience discrimination because of age, gender, socio-economic status, impairments, membership of ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities, etc.—are those least able to access safe water and sanitation, and ultimately least able to progress towards enjoying all their human rights.

We invite research contributions from empirical practice and theoretical perspectives addressing the reasons, solutions, methods and challenges of inclusive water security. This Special Issue will be oriented around the topics of:

  • Water for women and youth
  • Water governance with and for all
  • Sanitation for society
  • Finance for water sector transformation to meet the SDGs
  • Migration through regional integration and water security
  • Water and equity in climate change adaptation
  • Entrepreneurship and innovation driving water impact for all
  • Linking water and biodiversity with inclusive development

Prof. Guillermo Donoso Harris
Prof. Jennie Barron
Prof. Stefan Uhlenbrook
Dr. Hussam Hussein
Prof. Gyewoon Choi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) will be covering the Article Processing Charge (APC) for open access for all accepted articles for the Special Issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

 

Keywords

  • SDG implementation
  • inclusive water and sanitation development
  • inclusive climate change adaptation
  • water governance
  • regional integration and water security
  • innovation and finance

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Rural Piped-Water Enterprises in Cambodia: A Pathway to Women’s Empowerment?
Water 2019, 11(12), 2541; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11122541 - 01 Dec 2019
Abstract
This research examined the extent to which women’s ownership and management of water supply schemes led to their empowerment, including their economic empowerment, in rural Cambodia. Privately managed water supply schemes in rural Cambodia serve over one million people. This study is the [...] Read more.
This research examined the extent to which women’s ownership and management of water supply schemes led to their empowerment, including their economic empowerment, in rural Cambodia. Privately managed water supply schemes in rural Cambodia serve over one million people. This study is the first of its kind to systematically investigate the experiences and needs of female water supply scheme owners, using well-established theoretical frameworks for women’s empowerment, namely Longwe’s stages of empowerment, and Rowlands, VeneKlasen and Miller’s elaboration on different types of power. Business management frameworks relevant to the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector were also drawn on to assess operational constraints and enablers. Fifteen structured interviews were conducted with female water entrepreneurs in rural Cambodia. Female entrepreneurs reported encountering four key barriers to establishing and managing water supply schemes. The first were operational, and government and regulatory related issues, followed by financial issues and limited demand for water services. Three important enablers were reported by entrepreneurs: social enablers, economic enablers and program support from government, associations and non-government organisations (NGOs). This study found that, whilst there was evidence of empowerment reported by female water enterprise owners, the complexity of the ongoing empowerment process, challenges and limitations were also observed. Women’s empowerment can be advanced through leadership of, and involvement in water enterprises, as evidenced by this study, however, gender norms constrained women, especially with respect to mobility (leaving the home for extended periods), and household and family duties impacting on income-generating work or vice versa. As such, targeted strategies are needed by a range of actors to address such constraints. The findings of this study can assist NGOs, donors and governments incentivizing entrepreneurship in water services, to ensure that these interventions are not gender blind, and to draw on evidence of the barriers and enablers for female entrepreneurs and how these are influenced by contextualized gender norms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Open AccessCommunication
EU Horizon 2020 Research for A Sustainable Future: INNOQUA—A Nature-Based Sanitation Solution
Water 2019, 11(12), 2461; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11122461 - 23 Nov 2019
Abstract
This paper explores the experiences of partners in the multi-national, EU-funded INNOQUA project, who have developed and are currently demonstrating the potential for novel nature-based, decentralised wastewater treatment solutions in ten different countries. Four solutions are under investigation, each at different Technology Readiness [...] Read more.
This paper explores the experiences of partners in the multi-national, EU-funded INNOQUA project, who have developed and are currently demonstrating the potential for novel nature-based, decentralised wastewater treatment solutions in ten different countries. Four solutions are under investigation, each at different Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs): Lumbrifilter; Daphniafilter; Bio-Solar Purification unit; UV disinfection unit. An overview of the solutions is provided, along within data from pilot sites. The project is currently entering an intensive demonstration phase, during which sites will be open for visits and act as the focus for training and dissemination activities on sustainable wastewater treatment. Barriers to market for nature-based solutions are also explored. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Open AccessArticle
Mobilising Finance for WASH: Getting the Foundations Right
Water 2019, 11(11), 2425; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11112425 - 19 Nov 2019
Abstract
Responding to the substantial finance gap for achieving Sustainable Development Goals 6.1 and 6.2, the water and sanitation sector has mobilized to launch new blended finance vehicles with increasing frequency. The sustainability and scale-up of financial solutions is intended to support increased access [...] Read more.
Responding to the substantial finance gap for achieving Sustainable Development Goals 6.1 and 6.2, the water and sanitation sector has mobilized to launch new blended finance vehicles with increasing frequency. The sustainability and scale-up of financial solutions is intended to support increased access to unserved, marginalized populations. However, without addressing foundational issues in the sector, any finance mechanism, whether public, private or blended, will be a short-term, band-aid solution and the sector will continue the cycle of dependency on external assistance. This paper presents the results of a collaborative effort of Water.org; the IRC water, sanitation and hygiene sector (WASH); and the World Bank Water Global Practice. Drawing from the latest research on effective public financial management and based on evidence from the countries where these organizations work, the paper demonstrates that sustainable success in mobilising finance on a large scale is dependent on a reasonable level of performance across 10 foundational areas. The paper presents evidence on the 10 foundational areas and discusses why other aspects of finance and governance, while necessary, are not sufficient. Better coordination amongst all development partners and governments, including a collective commitment to and prioritization of working on these foundational issues, is a necessary first step. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Open AccessArticle
Flood Risk Mapping Worldwide: A Flexible Methodology and Toolbox
Water 2019, 11(11), 2371; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11112371 - 13 Nov 2019
Abstract
Flood risk assessments predict the potential consequences of flooding, leading to more effective risk management and strengthening resilience. However, adequate assessments rely on large quantities of high-quality input data. Developing regions lack reliable data or funds to acquire them. Therefore, this research has [...] Read more.
Flood risk assessments predict the potential consequences of flooding, leading to more effective risk management and strengthening resilience. However, adequate assessments rely on large quantities of high-quality input data. Developing regions lack reliable data or funds to acquire them. Therefore, this research has developed a flexible, low-cost methodology for mapping flood hazard, vulnerability and risk. A generic methodology was developed and customized for freely available data with global coverage, enabling risk assessment worldwide. The default workflow can be enriched with region-specific information when available. The practical application is assured by a modular toolbox developed on GDAL and PCRASTER. This toolbox was tested for the catchment of the river Moustiques, Haiti, for which several flood hazard maps were developed. Then, the toolbox was used to create social, economic and physical vulnerability maps. These were combined with the hazard maps to create the three corresponding flood risk maps. After creating these with the default data, more detailed information, gathered during field work, was added to verify the results of the basic workflow. These first tests of the developed toolbox show promising results. The toolbox allows policy makers in developing countries to perform reliable flood risk assessments and generate the necessary maps. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Open AccessArticle
Unpacking Barriers to Socially Inclusive Weather Index Insurance: Towards a Framework for Inclusion
Water 2019, 11(11), 2235; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11112235 - 25 Oct 2019
Abstract
Floods account for a majority of disasters, especially in South Asia, where they affect 27 million people annually, causing economic losses of over US$1 billion. Climate change threatens to exacerbate these risks. Risk transfer mechanisms, such as weather index insurance (WII) may help [...] Read more.
Floods account for a majority of disasters, especially in South Asia, where they affect 27 million people annually, causing economic losses of over US$1 billion. Climate change threatens to exacerbate these risks. Risk transfer mechanisms, such as weather index insurance (WII) may help buffer farmers against these hazards. However, WII programs struggle to attract the clients most in need of protection, including marginalized women and men. This risks re-enforcing existing inequalities and missing opportunities to promote pro-poor and gender-sensitive development. Key questions, therefore, include what factors constrain access to WIIs amongst heterogeneous communities, and how these can be addressed. This paper contributes to that end through primary data from two WII case studies (one in India, the other in Bangladesh) that identify contextual socio-economic and structural barriers to accessing WII, and strategies to overcome these. More significantly, this paper synthesizes the case study findings and those from a review of the literature on other WII initiatives into a framework to promote a systematic approach to address these challenges: an important step forward in moving from problem analysis to remedial action. The framework highlights actions across WII product design, implementation and post-implementation, to minimize risks of social exclusion in future WII schemes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
Open AccessArticle
Water Users Associations in Tanzania: Local Governance for Whom?
Water 2019, 11(10), 2178; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11102178 - 19 Oct 2019
Abstract
In order to implement Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) according to good practice, governments and development agencies have promoted the setting-up of Water Users Associations (WUAs) as a broadly applicable model for water management at the local level. WUAs are promoted as key [...] Read more.
In order to implement Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) according to good practice, governments and development agencies have promoted the setting-up of Water Users Associations (WUAs) as a broadly applicable model for water management at the local level. WUAs are promoted as key to the rolling out of IWRM principles through a participative process. Using intensive qualitative data, this paper discusses Tanzanian WUAs in light of the Regulatory Framework within which they operate. I argue that although the government’s objectives are to achieve an equitable and sustainable allocation of water resources, the formalisation of water allocation has led to the exclusion of specific water users. This paper focuses on the Great Ruaha River Catchment (GRRC), where water scarcity has led to competition between investors and small-scale water users. The GRRC is an environment in which formal and informal practices overlap, due to legal pluralism and the incremental implementation of water governance frameworks. This study calls for a reassessment of the role of WUAs in Tanzania. There is a clear gap between the theoretical clarity of tasks handed to WUAs (particularly their role in formalising access to water), and the messiness of everyday practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Open AccessArticle
Improved Water Services Cooperation through Clarification of Rules and Roles
Water 2019, 11(10), 2172; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11102172 - 19 Oct 2019
Abstract
Water services face global challenges, many of which are institutional by nature. While technical solutions may suit several situations, institutional frameworks are likely to vary more. On the basis of constructive research approach and new institutional economics we analyze and illustrate water services [...] Read more.
Water services face global challenges, many of which are institutional by nature. While technical solutions may suit several situations, institutional frameworks are likely to vary more. On the basis of constructive research approach and new institutional economics we analyze and illustrate water services and the roles of various water sector actors in Finnish water utility setting using the “soccer analogy” by the Nobel Laureate D.C. North: Institutions are the “formal and informal rules of the game” while organizations are the “players”. Additionally, we assess the Finnish water governance system and discuss issues of scale and fragmentation and distinguish terms water provision and production. Finally, we elaborate the limitations of the soccer analogy to water services through ownership of the systems. According to the soccer analogy, inclusive institutional development requires skillful players (competent staff), team play (collaboration), proper coaching (education), supporters (citizens, media), managers (policymakers), and referees (authorities). We argue that institutional diversity and player/stakeholder collaboration are the foundation for enhancing good multi-level water governance, and that water management, although fragmented, should be seen as a connector of different sectors. For successful outcomes, scientific results should be communicated to public in more common language. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Improving Water Management Education across the Latin America and Caribbean Region
Water 2019, 11(11), 2318; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11112318 - 06 Nov 2019
Abstract
Education can help secure inclusive and resilient development around water resources. However, it is difficult to provide the latest science to those managing water resources (both now and in the future). Collectively, we hypothesize that dissemination and promotion of scientific knowledge using students [...] Read more.
Education can help secure inclusive and resilient development around water resources. However, it is difficult to provide the latest science to those managing water resources (both now and in the future). Collectively, we hypothesize that dissemination and promotion of scientific knowledge using students as central agents to transfer theoretical knowledge into practice is an efficient way to address this difficulty. In this study, we test this hypothesis in the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region as a representative case study region. First, we use a literature review to map a potential gap in research on education around water resources across the LAC region. We then review potential best practices to address this gap and to better translate water resources education techniques into the LAC region. Integral to these efforts is adopting students as agents for information transfer to help bridge the gap between the global state-of-the science and local water resources management. Our results highlight the need to establish a new standard of higher educational promoting exchange between countries as local populations are vulnerable to future shifts in climate at global scales and changes in land usage at regional scales. The new standard should include peer-to-peer mentoring achieved by jointly exchanging and training students and practitioners in water management techniques, increasing access to water data and pedagogic information across the region, and lowering administration roadblocks that prevent student exchange. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2019 World Water Week)
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