The World Water Council, an international organisation based in Marseille (France) is currently seeking expressions of interest from National Governments willing to host and organize the World Water Forum in March 2018. Preliminary expressions of interest should be received by the World Water Council Secretariat by 20 October 2012.
The Council aims to promote awareness of critical water issues at all levels, building political commitment and triggering action. It focuses in particular on the efficient and sustainable conservation and management of freshwater resources and the delivery of water services for the benefit of all life on earth. To this end, the Council organizes, every three years, in close collaboration with a host country and a host city, a World Water Forum. The Forum is the largest international awareness-raising event focused on water, development and environmental issues. It provides a platform where multi-stakeholder dialogues take place on critical water and sanitation issues.
The Forum is not just an international conference. It is a three-year process involving a great deal of preparatory work on specific subjects through different processes.
The Forums are usually composed of a number of interlinked components:
- A Thematic Forum;
- A Political Component, including a Ministerial Conference and engagement with Local Elected Officials and Parliamentarians;
- A regional and civil society approach;
- A World Water Expo and Fair.
The preparatory processes for each of these components help to formulate concrete solutions to the main water-related challenges that the world faces today. The notion of regional approaches will be considered, as will activities that seek to create a dimension of citizenship and grassroots action.
The 1st World Water Forum (Marrakech, Morocco – 1997) attracted 500 participants. The 2nd (The Hague, The Netherlands – 2000) was attended by 6,000 delegates. The 3rd (Kyoto, Shiga and Osaka, Japan – 2003) and the 4th (Mexico City, Mexico – 2006) each drew over 20,000 participants from all sectors and all continents. The 5th(Istanbul, Turkey – 2009) was the largest Forum in history with over 30,000 participants. Likewise, the 6th (Marseille, France – 2012) counted approximately 19,000 delegates and 30,000 entrances throughout the week.
The Council’s Board of Governors has determined that the bidding process for the World Water Forum will be open to the Government of any country that, together with the host city, can demonstrate its capacity to organize such an important event. In order to be considered for the next steps in the bidding procedure, a preliminary expression of interest should be received by the WWC Headquarters in Marseille by 20 October 2012. It must be presented or endorsed by a representative of the central Government of the country concerned, at the highest possible level.