Submitted by guest blogger on Tue,03/13/2012

By Jérôme Koundouno, IUCN West and Central Africa Regional Office

It’s my first time participating in a World Water Forum. And first time means discovering!

Jérôme Koundouno

This event in Marseille is a very good opportunity to meet people: experts, young professionals, old classmates, and also IUCN colleagues from other offices. We all work on the same topics and issues throughout the world even if we do not know physically each other: the World Water Forum makes it possible! That is great!

Meeting people means exchanges, and exchanges mean dialogue. And it works out nicely because IUCN is involved in dialogues with stakeholders in river basins to promote democratic and efficient management. Particularly in West Africa where IUCN-PACO (Central and West Africa Programme) with partners are working to better plan, build and manage large water infrastructure. Dialogue and involving all stakeholders, that is the best way to move forward…

Today I attended, among the others, the launch of the BRIDGE platform. Very promising. And tomorrow, we are planning a busy day on West African issues: a press conference in the morning to present the publication ‘Sharing water, sharing benefits’, and then in the afternoon a roundtable to share experiences on dam reservoir governance. Let’s see what happens…

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Submitted by guest blogger on Mon,03/12/2012

By Dr James Dalton of IUCN’s Water Programme.

The first day of the 6th World Water Forum is coming to a close. It’s been a day of chaos and confusion for many, as first days always are.

But this is promoted as the Forum of Solutions – and I look forward to hearing them and promoting nature as a solution to some of the world’s water problems throughout the week.

So far it has been good to catch up with people and I hope that it gets more ‘international’ as the week goes on. And that it becomes better organised as things progress!

IUCN’s Director General is now in the plenary and has some good things to say on natural solutions. I am biased but there is substance to these messages and new thinking – things that have been so far missing in the earlier plenary speeches.

Nature has some of the solutions – it’s time for people to listen! And that’s from an engineer! Now outside into the sunshine for some rays and a coffee with the team.

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