The World Water Forum 2024 (WWF) is a wrap!
The largest international conference in the water sector took place from 18 to 25 May in Bali, Indonesia. Time for a recap of the exciting things that transpired at the Dutch Pavilion.

An important reason for attending the WWF Dutch pavilion was to help position the Netherlands as an expert on global water challenges providing innovative approaches and state-of-the-art solutions to improve water security. In order to achieve this, the pavilion was designed as an open, inclusive and inventive space to make finding new (or strengthening existing) local and international partnerships easy.

The pavilion boasted an extensive programme with three main themes: ‘Water for resilient cities and deltas’,Water for food and energy’ and ‘Clean and safe water for all’. These were some of the highlights from an exciting week at WWF:

Start of a wave

The week kicked off with a bang with the launch of the ‘Indonesian Wave’, part of Wavemakers United. ‘A youth-led intergenerational network that connects initiatives, merges resources and enables collaboration. All the while adapting to local contexts to achieve the Water Action Agenda goal of educating one million children per year.’ explained Sabrina Farah Salsabilla, Chief Marketing Officer at ReservoAir.

Founder of Wavemakers United Tilly Stroo signed a Letter of Intent with the Indonesian Ministry of Public Works and Housing and Wavemakers United to collaborate under the Centre of Excellence for Water and Climate Resilience. ‘Signing this at such a significant platform as the WWF, Indonesia and the Netherlands are demonstrating their continued investment in youth participation. Not just during WWF’s but into the future as well.’



Water envoy in the house

Special Envoy for International Water Affairs, Meike van Ginneken also attended the WWF: ‘At the UN Water Conference in New York in 2023, we agreed to more than 800 water actions. Today, the Water Action Agenda is in full swing with Dutch companies, NGOs and the government participating in many of those actions at the community, local and national levels.

‘I want to congratulate the Indonesian government on bringing together the whole water world here at WWF. It has been a great opportunity to celebrate our long-standing and productive bilateral cooperation with Indonesia.’


A Matter of Perseverance

On the second day of the WWF, we – Partners for Water – hosted a session in collaboration with Water as Leverage. This programme brings together cities, designers, engineers, and financiers to enhance urban resilience to climate change. The goal of this session was to discuss bilateral collaboration with our seven partner countries regarding inclusive delta development.

As improving water security requires perseverance, we consider long-term partnerships with our partner countries to be essential. Amongst other things, we discussed how we can enhance the current approach and how to engage local partners effectively. We also shared insights gained from projects undertaken in our partner countries.


Launch of inaugural report

An exciting event that occurred at the Dutch pavilion was the launch of the first International Panel on Deltas and Coastal Areas (IPDC) report. The report was produced through a collaborative effort and sets out the climate adaptation strategies, processes, and challenges of each IPDC member country. Meike van Ginneken presented the first copies to two esteemed IDPC-members, Indonesia’s Pak Leo Eliasta and Egypt’s Mr. Walid Hakiki.


A special visitor

On the last day of presentations at the WWF, a very special person visited the Dutch Pavilion. Minister Basuki Hadimuljono of Indonesia’s Ministry of Public Works and Housing stopped by.

‘I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with the Minister about the relationship between Indonesia and The Netherlands, particularly focusing on the water sector. I believe this relationship will always be strong, equal and beneficial’, said Nishchal Sardjoe, Senior Water Management specialist at Deltares Indonesia

Thank you

Partners for Water would like to thank all the companies, NGO’s, governments, knowledge institutions and visitors who came and participated at our pavilion. We trust you had a fruitful WWF and hope to see you soon.

A special thanks to everyone who hosted a session at the Netherlands Pavilion 2024:
Bandung Technische Hoogeschool Fonds (BTHF), BESE BV, Danone, Deltares Netherlands, EcoShape Consortium, International Panel on Deltas, Coasts and Islands (IPDC), MetaMeta, Nazava Indonesia, NX Filtration, Partners for Water, Royal HaskoningDHV, UN-Habitat, Simavi, The International Centre for Water Cooperation (ICWC), SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, Valuing Water Initiative (VWI), Van Oord Dredging and Marine Contractors, WaterWorX (VEI, WereldWaternet and Oasen), Water as Leverage, Water Footprint Implementation, Wavemakers United/Nuffic/The Water Agency, Wetskills Foundation, Yayasan Plan International Indonesia

A glimpse of the NL Pavilion during the World Water Forum 2024

This year’s World Water Forum (WWF) is a significant one as it marks the events 10th anniversary

The jubilee edition is hosted by Indonesia and will take place in Bali under the main theme of ‘Water for shared prosperity’. The event will officially open with a traditional Balinese water purification ceremony, followed by 6 days of knowledge sharing, presenting, listening and networking.

Liliane Geerling, Programme Coordinator for Partners for Water and Ivo van der Linden, Delegated Representative for Indonesia discuss the importance of this event and the relationship between the Netherlands and Indonesia.

Liliane Geerling – Programme Coordinator, Partners for Water

‘At the WWF, we will present the Netherlands as a “Centre of Excellence with a shared pavilion where we showcase our broad expertise and knowledge related to water security. Partners for Water serves as host, but there are many other organisations involved, such as the Dutch embassy, Dutch companies and several Indonesian organisations. We feel that by attending the WWF we will benefit greatly because it will bring together so many stakeholders including; governments, multilateral institutions, academia and businesses.’


Enhancing cooperation

‘The pavilion will offer a comprehensive programme with lots of opportunities for interaction and in-depth sessions. For example, we are organising some sessions around the theme “Status and trends in global water cooperation”, where we will discuss what makes water cooperation work, how we can enhance bilateral cooperation and which role the international multilateral system should play. Another example is a presentation by the Ecoshape consortium about their research into Nature-based Solutions for increased water resilience in South-East Asia.’

‘At this year’s WWF, there will be many young water enthusiasts attending which is a great idea as after all they’re the future of the water sector. This is why we involved them in the run up to the event and it will continue to engage with them during and afterwards. One of the “youth activities” at the forum is a “pressure cooker challenge” (Raincarft Bali). Young professionals must come up with solutions to specific water challenges on the spot and then present them. I will be part of the jury and am very curious to hear what they come up with.’

Water action agenda

‘For me the WFF will be successful if, through our pavilion, we can spark discussions on how to advance innovative water solutions and how we can make these inclusive to all. Following that, I hope we can share knowledge and approaches towards water security for all. I also hope we can build upon the Water Action Agenda, which was launched at the UN Water Conference in New York in 2023. Since then, we’ve taken the lead on further developing this agenda and we hope to continue this in Bali. There is plenty of overlap between the action agenda and the themes of the WWF so I’m confident we will manage this.’

Ivo van der Linden – Delegated Representative, Indonesia

‘The fact that this year’s World Water Forum (WWF) is taking place in Bali is special for the Netherlands, due to our long-standing relationship with Indonesia. This collaboration was formalised in 2007 through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), but we have been working together for much longer. We do this in an integrated, inclusive, sustainable and equal manner. We want to commend Indonesia for hosting this WWF and applaud their leadership role in addressing global water and climate challenges. We will help them out wherever we can, to ensure this edition is a memorable one.’

‘Indonesia is developing rapidly and we have ambitious goals regarding our collaboration. This includes new ways of working, where we work together to create an agenda and activities. As we’re both delta countries, we face common challenges such as coastal erosion and rising sea levels. We’re not only partners on water issues, but we also collaborate on other topics too, like renewable energy, sustainable cities and agriculture innovation. But water is an important driver for our broader collaboration.’

Shared knowledge agenda

As we knew that this year’s WWF would be hosted in Bali, we’ve been working together with the Indonesian Government to organise several joint activities. One aspect of this is giving young people a greater platform, as Liliane already explained. In addition to that, we also created a shared “knowledge agenda” for the event, which will culminate in two panel sessions that we’re jointly moderating. In one of them we will discuss small islands development and how we can help mitigate the water problems they face, like a lack of fresh water or climate change-related challenges.’

In the coming years, we will continue investing in our relationship with Indonesia through enhanced dialogue and aligning policy agendas. Part of that process includes evaluating our past collaboration and discussing how we can further improve it. During these sessions, we also include other partners such as the Asian Development Bank as they can use their funding programmes to help turn ideas and plans into concrete, actionable projects.

For more information about the Netherlands Pavilion programme, visit the event page.

Or, directly download the programme!

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