Water Security and Sustainable Development Hub (GCRF)

GCRF Project Overview

Water Security and Sustainable Development Hub (GCRF) (2019 – 2023):is a project funded by the UK Research andInnovation of Global Challenges Research Fund (UKRI-GCRF). The collaborators inthe programme are UK, Colombia, Ethiopia (WLRC and IWMI), India and Malaysia.The Hub is coordinated by the University of Newcastle, UK. 

WLRC leads and coordinates the Ethiopian segment of the project, which is implemented in partnership with International Water Management Institute (IWMI). Collaborators in the project activities include the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA); Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity (MoWIE); Ethiopian Forest and Climate Change Commission (EFCCC); Ethiopian Institute of Water Resources (EIWR); Africa Centre of Excellence for Water Management (ACEWM); Agricultural Research Institutes (ARIs); Addis Ababa Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (AAWSSA), regional bureaus, basin authorities (Abay, Awash and Central Rift Valley CRV), and Universities in the basins. 

The overall objective of this project in Ethiopia is to generate innovative knowledge and improve governance system for sustainable water security in Ethiopia, focusing on the Abbay and Awash River basins and the CRV basin of Ethiopia.

Project Name: GCRF – Water Security and Sustainable Development HUB

Funding: UK Research and Innovation of Global Challenges Research Fund (UKRI-GCRF)

Duration: 2019 – 2023

Description: A reliable and acceptable quantity and quality of water, and managing water-related risks for all is considered by the United Nations (UN) to be “the critical determinant of success in achieving most other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”. However, progress in meeting SDG6, has been slow and in May 2018 the UN reported that “The world is not on track to achieve SDG6”.

Improvements that increase access to water or sanitation are undone due to pollution, extreme weather, urbanization, over abstraction of groundwater, land degradation etc which are caused by key barriers such as

a) Insufficient data to understand social, cultural, environmental, hydrological processes;

b)The not fit for purpose of the existing service delivery/ business models;

c) Fragmented water governance and

d) The inappropriate pathways to water security which are not adaptable to local context and values.

These barriers are inherently systemic, and will require a significant international and interdisciplinary endeavour. Hence, this project brings together leading researchers from Colombia, Ethiopia, India, Malaysia and the UK. Where each international partner hosted a water Collaboratory which will provide a participatory process, open to all stakeholders, to jointly question, discuss, and construct new ideas to resolve water security issues. This will be done through developing and demonstrating a systems and capacity building approach to better understand water systems; value all aspects of water; and strengthen water governance where the project aimed to unlock systemic barriers to achieving water security in practice.

Hub Coordination: The University of New Castle, UK

Collaboratories: Colombia, Ethiopia (WLRC and IWMI), India and Malaysia

Ethiopian Collaboratory Partners: MoA, MoWIE, EFCCC, EIWR, ACEWM, ARI’s, AAWSSA, Regional Bureaus, Basin authorities (Abbay Awash and CRV) and Universities in the observatory locations

Contact Person: Bitew K. Dessie (PhD)

UK Partners