2016 is a critical year for addressing the role of water in the post-2015 development agenda. That agenda has been developed in 2015 through two pivotal events: (1) the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) by the UN General Assembly, charting the world’s development course through 2030, and (2) a new global climate agreement adopted by COP 21 in Paris with important implications for water related mitigation and adaptation to climate change. 2015 was also the year of world summits on disaster risk reduction and finance for development. These events have profound importance for water development, stewardship and management.
Informed by the World Water Development Report 2016, the UN will focus on “water and jobs” at World Water Day in March 2016 as one of the key future water issues: making a contribution to better the lives of millions of people by maintaining and creating meaningful jobs related to water and wastewater development, service provision, protection and management.
The World Water Week in Stockholm in 2016 will echo and follow up on the UN ”water and jobs” theme, but do so in the broader context of sustainable growth, and thus directly and indirectly contribute to the (proposed) SDG 8 to “promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”. Hence, the theme will address sustainable growth for all by focusing on inclusiveness in terms of the societal and human dimensions in all regions of the world.
While the primary focus will be the “water for sustainable growth” theme, the Week will also follow up more generally on the implementation of the water related SDGs and the new climate agreement. Firmly placed at the intersection between policy, research and practice the World Water Week is also a natural place for exploring new ideas and perspectives in the area of water and sustainable growth between a diverse set of actors.
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