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Find out about events, conferences, workshops and courses in which we and our partners participate.

For other events see the WASH Events Calendar.

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Join IRC at Stockholm World Water Week

26th Aug 2018 to 31st Aug 2018

Visit the World Water Week website

Join our sessions at the 2018 World Water Week Conference in Stockholm.

This annual event, organised by SIWI, the Stockholm International Water Institute, consists of more than 200 sessions. One of the highlights is the Stockholm Water Prize Ceremony and Royal Banquet. In 2017, over 3,300 individuals and around 380 convening organisations from 135 countries participated in the Week.

The theme for this year is "Water, ecosystems and human development".

IRC and partners co-organised sessions

Where Agenda For Change partners, Watershed – empowering citizens partners, Water For People & IRC, will be speaking at the 2018 World Water Week Conference in Stockholm:

Sunday, 26 August

Resilient water services in an increasingly water insecure world
Convenors: Global Water Operators' Partnerships Alliance at UN-Habitat, Wetlands International, WaterWorX, Blue Deal consortia, Government of the Netherlands
Room: NL Pillar Hall
Time: 09:00 – 10:30

WASH services depend on, and have an impact on ecosystems. Economic growth, population growth, urbanisation and climate change create enormous pressure on ecosystems, and on the availability of water sources. Water is often extracted in an unsustainable way and (un)treated wastewater negatively impacts the environment. Additionally, the reduction of good quality water resources is often leading to tensions or conflicts between water users. We will explore solutions for these complex problems, focusing on the question: how are we going to make our water services more resilient in an increasingly water insecure world? Read more


Mission possible? Funding universal water services in "every district"
Convenors: Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and Stanford University
Room: NL 461
Time: 11:00 – 12:30

For decades, smaller towns and rural areas have struggled to attract the levels of finance required to meet the SDGs for water supply. Development finance is often targeted to cities; private financiers are wary of the perceived risk-return profile; domestic public finance is often allocated to other development priorities; and both philanthropy and charitable aid often targets individual projects, rather than supporting government strategy to reach universal coverage. Read more


Strengthening national WASH policy and legal frameworks to achieve SDG 6
Convenors: African Ministers' Council On Water, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, World Health Organization, The Center for Water Security and Cooperation
Room: NL 461
Time: 11:00 – 12:30

Since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, there has been increasing demand from national governments for support to revise and adopt more effective WASH laws and policies that align with the SDGs. As a result, many countries are requesting guidance on how to assess gaps in policies and on whether reforms they have taken, once implemented, are resulting in the intended changes, including achieving national WASH targets. Read more


Advancing water reforms through the open government partnership
Convenors: Stockholm International Water Institute, Open Government Partnership, World Resources Institute, Water Integrity Network, Fundación Avina
Location: NL Music Hall
Time: 11:00 – 12:30

The water sector is typically focused on technical and management issues yet some of its greatest challenges relate to broader governance problems. This technical approach does not usually prioritise a citizen centric perspective over responsive service delivery, water use and quality challenges; nor does it emphasise the development of participatory forums for water providers, government regulators, water users and customers.


Sustainability of WASH services: making it real
Convenors: Directorate-General for International Cooperation, The Netherlands; United Nations Children's Fund; UNDP-SIWI Water Governance Facility
Location: SIWI Sofa
Time: 14:00 – 14:30


Integrity management for sustainable water services
Convenors: Stockholm International Water Institute, Water Integrity Network, CEWAS, Inter-American Development Bank
Location: NL 353

Time: 14:00 – 15:30

Irregular procurement processes, illegal connections, collusion of officials, etc. are all serious integrity challenges that water sector organisations face in their daily jobs. Such cases of mismanagement can damage an organisation's performance and reputation, and cause direct and indirect damages to water users. In view of the SDGs implementation (linking SDG 6 with SDG 16), there is an urgent need to prioritise integrity in water governance, to ensure the fulfilment of the right to water and sanitation. Read more

Monday, 27 August 

From sector coordination to effective national accountability for SDG6
Convenors: End Water Poverty, WaterAid, IRC, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council, Water Integrity Network, Simavi, Coalition Eau
Location: Exhibition Hall
Time: 10:00 – 10:30

This session will showcase our ground-breaking global research on national accountability mechanism on SDG 6. It is widely recognised that the sustainable development goals (SDG's) are ambitious and will require effective collaboration among all stakeholders. Read more


Translating WASH Systems Into Practice
Convenors: Agenda for Change Secretariat, Welthungerhilfe, Aguaconsult
Location: City /Konferensen
Time: 10:30 – 12:00 


Innovative financing mechanism study: Luncheon
Convenors: GIZ and Urban Institute
Location: Room 352
Time: 12:00 – 13:30


Blended finance: From principles to practice
Convenors: OECD, World Water Council, Government of the Netherlands, IRC,
Location: Room FH 300
Time: 14:00 – 15:30

Drawing on the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Blended Finance Principles and a diverse set of case studies in water and other sectors from Asia and Africa, this Stockholm World Water Week session will explore how blended finance instruments and mechanisms can be designed to mobilize additional commercial finance. It will examine how water-related investments can benefit from recent developments in blended finance, the prerequisites to make blended finance work at scale, and the ways to engage development finance institutions and private financiers.

This session will open with introductory remarks and a series of short "ignite presentations" that will be followed by a panel discussion and an interactive debate with the audience. Read more


Making best use of WASH Finance– a conversation with IFIs
Convenors: Sanitation and Water for All
Location: Room NL 253
Time: 14:00 – 15:30

The water, sanitation and hygiene sector faces an enormous financing gap, and investment to date has been poorly targeted and absorbed. In order to leave no one behind, many countries face an urgent need to identify new sustainable sources of finance, and also to make the best use of the funds they already have. Read more


Freshwater Conservation-WASH integration: high-level and local-level challenges and opportunities
Convenors: Conservation International, World Wide Fund for Nature, The Nature Conservancy, HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation, Water For People, Millennium Water Alliance, IRC, Wetlands International
Location: Room NL 461
Time: 16:00 – 17:30

This event will be interactive including a participatory panel discussion. After a quiz with the audience to test their knowledge linking freshwater conservation and WASH approaches, participants will examine challenges and opportunities related to working with government or policy around integration of WASH and freshwater ecosystem conservation. Read more

Tuesday 28 August

Finance deep-dive: What are the real blockages to financing SDG 6? Examples and recommendations to overcome them
Convenors:, IRC
Location: 7A Centralen, Vasagatan 7, Stockholm
Time: 8:30 – 10:30**

Financing the achievement of SDG 6 requires approaches relatively untested in the WASH sector. Moreover, existing blended finance mechanisms are predominantly available in wealthier countries. To appropriate blended solutions in lower-income countries, water and finance experts need to better understand how these mechanisms function so they can then develop context-specific adaptations with an eye to serving the poor. This session will showcase how existing blended financing instruments are (or are not) working for WASH with regard to the poorest and what changes in the enabling environment are required to attract the additional resources required for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal 6 by 2030. Builds of Session 1: Blended finance: From principles to practice Read more

**Coffee and light breakfast will be served

 Dutch reception
Convenors: IRC, Akvo, NWP, Aqua for All
Location: Dutch embassy
Time: 18:00 – 19:00 [By invitation only]
Wednesday 29 August

Demystifying private sector engagement and the role of technology in rural water management. The Kenya RAPID experience. "Business unusual in managing water security risks in arid and semi-arid areas"
Convenors: USAID, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Republic of Kenya, Millennium Water Alliance, IBM, Kenya RAPID
Location: City Konferensen Ingenjörhuset
Time: 08:00 - 10:00

This panel session will focus on sharing lessons learned from the Kenyan experience of developing and implementing public-private partnerships to mitigate water challenges during times of drought and improve the resilience of pastoralist communities. The public-private partnership developed as part of the Kenya Resilient Arid Lands partnership for Integrated Development (RAPID) program are providing advanced decision support tools to improve water resource management at various scales, improving the investment and business models around financing, insurance and asset management of water supply infrastructure and optimising water service processes such as permitting, billing and distribution


Social inclusive WASH programming
Convenors: World Bank, WaterAid, GIZ, Sida, Unicef, WSSCC and Brac; Dutch organisations Simavi, IRC, Wetlands International, Plan Nederland and VEI.
Location: The Dutch Pavilion (Booth 1), City Conference Centre, Barnusgatan 12-14
Time: 13:00-13:50

Launch of report Social inclusive WASH programming: Simavi published a new report on social inclusion in WASH programmes and presents the results and recommendations. Several experts will react, followed by a discussion with the audience.


Launch of The Global Review of National Accountability Mechanisms for SDG6
Convenors: Watershed, End Water Poverty, Coalition Eau, WSSCC, Sanitation and Water for All
Location: The Dutch Pavillion
Time: 14:20 - 15:00

Launch and discussion of the The Global Review of National Accountability Mechanisms for SDG6. 


Why can't a tailor fly a plane?
Convenors: United Nations Children's Fund, IRC, Government of Ethiopia
Location: NL 253
Time: 16:00 – 16:45

In a commitment to reduce levels of non-functionality of rural water systems in Ethiopia whilst at the same time to improve service levels to achieve the SDG and GoE Growth and Transformation Plan targets, Ethiopia is currently going through an interesting institutional change management process. Read more


The trillion-dollar question: Turning safely managed finances into sustainable services
Convenors: Water Integrity Network; Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit; Kenya Water and Sanitation Civil Societies Network; Sanitation and Water for All; Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany; Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative
Location: FH Little Theatre
Time: 16:00 – 1:45

There is a big push for mobilising additional financing for SDG 6 from governments, private investors and philanthropic organisations. Yet governments and utilities still face problems in accessing already available finances and turning these into sustainable services: 40% of countries absorb less than 75% of finances from domestic resources and donors, with difficulties in public procurement and corruption risks ranking among the top challenges (GLAAS 2017). Moreover, few countries and organisations meet the governance and transparency requirements to be creditworthy for loans from private banks or pension funds. Read more


Strong WASH Systems: The Essential Element for SDG6 Achievement
Convenors: IRC, USAID, Ministry of Water and Environment Uganda
Location: SIWI Sofa Space
Time: 17:00 – 17:30

The delivery of safe and sustainable WASH services to everyone requires strong WASH systems, within districts and countries. This discussion will provide insight into the key elements and approaches that make up a system and identify areas of weakness. Read more

Thursday 30 August

National WASH M&E systems: do we need them for accountability? Are they sufficient?
Convenors: IRC, Watershed
Location: Netherlands Pavilion
Time: 11:30 - 12:00

This is a session which will look critically at national WASH M&E systems drawing from my work in 10 countries in Western and Central Africa where IRC and UNICEF supported participatory assessments of national WASH M&E systems. The ultimate goals was to develop national M&E plans geared to strengthen country-led monitoring. But how important are these systems for achieving the SDGs and are they needed to influence policy?


Om (O&M) – the mantra for sustainable water/sanitation services
Convenors: Water Integrity Network
Location: LH Little Theatre
Time: 14:00 – 15:30

Operation and maintenance is key to make water and sanitation services sustainable in the long run. Successful investments and initiatives often fail if the O&M is not assured from the beginning, this is the case for water (SDG 6.1) and sanitation projects even more (SDG 6.2 and 6.3). In this event, creative and holistic innovative approaches to assure sustainable O&M of water and sanitation services will be presented and discussed. Examples from different countries will show that SDG 6 is at the core of Agenda2030 linking to SDG 2, 3, 4, 5, 11 and 16. Read more

Come See us at stand #25 and at the Dutch Pavilion! Or drop us an email at