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Global Water Stewardship Forum: Day Two Report


Wednesday November 2nd was the final day of the inaugural Global Water Stewardship Forum, convened by the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS).

Over 100 water stewardship practitioners and promoters from around 20 countries to advance the understanding and impact of AWS Water Stewardship, and to contribute to the further development of the global AWS Water Stewardship System. 

The AWS Standard is a globally-applicable framework for major water users to understand their water use and imacts, and to work collaboratively and transparently for sustainable water management within a catchment context. Implementing the AWS Standard helps entities to: 

  • Understand their water use in the context of a catchment
  • Build internal capacity through a step-wise learning framework
  • Manage water risks at site level and through supply chains
  • Engage effectively and build trust with local stakeholders

Wednesday breakout sessions included a discussion around advancing coordination and creating coherence between AWS and other water initiatives, with participants including senior representatives from the 2030 Water Resources Group,the Water Footprint Network, WWF International and the UN CEO Water Mandate. A parallel group looked to advancing collaboration between AWS and, specifically, other standard systems, with participation from The Agriculture Stewardship Council, the Better Cotton Initiative, Olam, the Golf Environment Organization and the iSEAL Alliance. 

Other Forum participants gathered to engaged in sessions devoted to "Access to socially robust information for AWS Standard implementation", "Turning socially robust information into a global platform for water stewardship knowledge", "Strengthening the AWS business case", and "Finance to support uptake and development of AWS water stewardship". 

In closing remarks, AWS Chief Executive Adrian Sym gave credit to participants and stakeholders for making the inaugural Forum so productive in progressing global water stewardship standards. Sym expressed confidence that the Forum would become an annual event.

AWS Chair Michael Spencer was particularly thanked for his contribution to the cause of water stewardship, with the presentation of the inaugural "AWS Forum Award". The Global Water Stewardship Forum is supported by the Scottish Government, the International Water Stewardship Program (IWASP), UKAID, “German Co-operation” and GIZ.