Leadership of the Nile Basin Initiative honored at the second "Women in Water Diplomacy Global Network Forum" in Vienna

NBI ED and other women in water
Monday 11th of March 2024

Addressing the need for women’s empowerment in the water sector, the “Women in Water Diplomacy Global Network Forum” took place in Vienna from 4 to 7 March 2024. The event, which gathered more than 80 water management experts and networks from across the globe, provided a platform for exchange on best practices and experiences on gender mainstreaming and addressing strategic challenges related to water management and security among women water professionals from around the world.

The Women in Water Diplomacy Network was initiated in 2017 to improve gender equality in high-level decision making in transboundary basins with focus on women’s leadership in regional dialogues around shared waters. The Network was developed in the Nile Basin and later adapted and replicated in other water regions including Central Asia and Afghanistan and other partner basins across Africa, Asia, and the Americas through the 2022 Global Network Strategy ‘A Path Forward for Women, Water, Peace and Security.’ In person ‘Network Forums’ have long been a central feature of Network engagements. The Women in Water Diplomacy Network in the Nile has held three Basin Forums prior to the pandemic including in October 2017 in Uganda; December 2018 in Ethiopia; and January 2020 in Kenya. Each of these three Nile Basin Forums are described in the Network’s inception and development report ‘Laying the Bedrock of Transformation.’ In 2022, the Network convened its first Global Network Forum and released its Global Strategy at the 2022 World Water Week in Stockholm, Sweden. 

The 2024 Global Network Forum include four intensive days of joint learning and experience exchange with an expected 80-100 Network members, leading global water experts, and Network supporters from around the world. Additionally, the program will include innovative networking and informal engagement activities as well as collective celebration of International Women's Day!

For the Nile Basin Initiative, the objective was achieved. Indeed, this second edition of the Women in Water Diplomacy was an opportunity to reward its Executive Director, Dr. Florence Grace Adongo, for her leadership in the management of transboundary basin organizations. She received recognition from her peers for her role in cooperation in the Nile basin, but also for her commitment to building peace and stability in the Nile region. The award is timely, as the NBI is celebrating 25 years of existence, marking its impact in strengthening gender equality and equity in women's leadership.

The Women in Water Diplomacy Global Network Forum aligns with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, particularly Goal 5 (Gender Equality) and Goal 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation). Building on the collective expertise and collaboration of women in the water sector, the event has the potential to make a tangible impact on inclusive forward-looking water governance and contribute to the Water Action Agenda derived from the UN 2023 Water Conference.