The concept of meeting in the Forum every three years has now proven itself: Marrakesh, Kyoto, The Hague, Mexico, Istanbul, Marseille, Daegu and in 2018 in Brasilia. The World Water Forum (WWForum) has a clear focus on policy, coordination and cooperation. This sets it apart from other more B2B oriented events. The Dutch Embassy and NWP, with financial support from the Partners for Water Programme, sent a clear message from the Dutch contribution to the WWForum – ‘Be prepared to embrace water … be ready to share knowledge’. It created the framework for dialogue on themes such as finance, urban resilience and water crisis.
Bert Diphoorn, co-organiser of the second Forum in 2000 in The Hague and now working at AKVO, joined the Netherlands Pavilion. “It was good to see that the WWForum is still very much alive. It is definitely the networking opportunity for the sector as everything comes together here: knowledge, governments, business, a perfect mix from all over the world. If you want to strengthen and expand your network, this is by far the best place to do so. The sessions during the Forum are also highly substantive.”
The World Water Forum has a clear focus on policy, coordination and cooperation.
The Dutch Embassy in Brazil was actively involved in the Dutch participation in the Forum and facilitated a networking reception at the residence. Bert Diphoorn was pleased with the joint NWP and Dutch Embassy efforts. “During a meeting at the Embassy, I spoke to many Dutch participants and they were generally very positive about the Forum. It shows the value of presenting the Netherlands collectively. The Dutch Pavilion was, as always, very inviting. It was constantly busy. There was much dialogue between different nationalities and generations, good matchmaking and an excellent atmosphere. It was clear that we really had something to offer. The joint effort between NWP and the Dutch Embassy has created the opportunity for the Netherlands to profile itself well. This can clearly be seen in the number of concrete results for many participants.”
Many organisations and initiatives took advantage of the momentum brought about by the WWForum. In one example, Dutch Water Envoy Henk Ovink, who was part of the High Level Panel on Water, presented the final report of this UN Panel. In another example, the Dutch water authorities, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, gave the go-ahead for the Blue Deal in the Netherlands Pavilion.
The joint effort between NWP and the Dutch Embassy has created the opportunity for the Netherlands to profile itself well.