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Published on: 30/11/2022


THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS – 30 NOVEMBER 2022 – International think tank IRC, global nonprofit Water For People and partners, have launched All Systems Connect 2023 International Symposium, their ambitious 3-day event (2-4 May 2023, World Forum, The Hague). The Symposium will bring together change-makers from health, climate, economic development, education, social justice and water, sanitation and hygiene, to prompt systemic thinking and action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Interview with Patrick and Samson

The event will connect people and ideas, systems and solutions to achieve justice for all, and highlight the role of water and sanitation in achieving this goal. Notable partners and supporters so far include: UNICEF, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Sanitation and Water for All, the Government of the Netherlands, Osprey Foundation, World Vision and the World Health Organization. Speakers so far include the following, with more to be announced:

  • Henk Ovink, Special Envoy for International Water Affairs, Government of the Netherlands.
  • Mariana Mazzucato (PhD) Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London, Co-Chair of the Global Commission on the Economics of Water. Author - Mission Economy - a moonshot guide to changing capitalism.
  • Dr Githinji Gitahi, Group CEO, AMREF Health Africa.
  • Dr Kodjo Esseim Mensah-Abrampa, Director General National Development Planning Commission, Ghana.
  • Neeta Pokhrel, Chief of Water Sector Group, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Dept, Asian Development Bank. 
  • Hajar Yagkoubi, Youth Inclusion Expert and former UN Youth Representative for The Netherlands.
  • Kitty van der Heijden, Director-General International Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands.

The Symposium will share stories and evidence around how people are achieving justice through strong, interlinked systems, with governments at their centre. It will follow hot on the heels of the UN Water conference in March 2023, providing the ‘how’ to the UN Conference’s ‘why’.

WASH Learning sessions will present real-world cases, evidence and participant experiences in how to design, implement, monitor and fund for greater impact and scale. They will cover five themes: systems change and collective action; governments, politics and systems change; systemic solutions for water resource management; markets and behaviour change; financing and delivering safely managed water and sanitation for all.

CONNECT sessions will explore the interrelationship of water, sanitation and hygiene with health, climate, economic development, education and social justice. They will share new perspectives on connections between these systems. They will encourage people to become allies to advocate for, and take action on, shared challenges.

MAKE CHANGE sessions will follow an adapted ‘design sprint’ format, bringing together experts from diverse disciplines to develop prototype solutions that can be tested and scaled up after the event.

ALL TOGETHER sessions are plenary events with keynote speakers from across the world.

Patrick Moriarty, CEO, IRC said:

“We need to connect across silos and sectors if we’re to tackle the challenges we’re all facing and achieve the SDGs. The issues are complex, but the solutions are there. They lie in strong, interconnected, national and local systems working in co-ordination to deliver crucial public services. All Systems Connect is a determined intervention to change the way we work and look at how to make this happen.”

Samson Bekele, Co-CEO, Water For People, added:

“We have less than a decade to ensure that every home has taps and toilets, and every community has safe, continuous and unending water, sanitation and hygiene services. We’re failing in many areas, but we know what’s needed--joint commitments, more funding to the sector, and political will at every level. At All Systems Connect we’ll be uniting to equip ourselves with the skills, know-how and connections to achieve so much more.”

Learn more:

 All Systems Connect 2023


Editor’s notes

About All Systems Connect 2023

Connecting people and ideas, systems and solutions, to achieve justice for all.

Powered by the D30 Alliance: IRC and Water For People
When: Tuesday 2 – Thursday 4 May 2023
Where: World Forum | The Hague, The Netherlands

Social media:  @IRCWASH @waterforpeople #AllSystemsConnect2023
Petra Brussee, IRC Head of Corporate Communications | +31 70 304 4043 |

About IRC

IRC is a catalyst of change, working in every corner of water, sanitation, and hygiene to build and strengthen systems that transform lives. With its partners, the organisation uses its expertise to deliver water and sanitation systems in eight countries and 31 districts and municipalities. IRC works with local and national governments, businesses, and civil society, and with international partners around the world to promote systems thinking and service delivery. Its international team is made up of over 120 recognised water, sanitation, and hygiene system specialists and dedicated field staff, based in its focus countries, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Honduras, India, Mali, Niger and Uganda, and additional offices in the Netherlands and the United States.

For more information visit

About Water For People

Water For People, motivated by the fact that water is a human right, is a nonprofit working across nine countries in Latin America, Asia, and Africa to address the global water crisis. In bringing together communities, local businesses, and governments to build, operate, and maintain their own systems, Water For People’s approach ensures that every family, health clinic, and school has lasting access to safe water and sanitation. This model, called Everyone Forever, secures sustainability for generations.

Learn more at

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