Solution Exchange discussion: Water Networks in India - Referrals, Advice

Compiled by Nitya Jacob, Resource Person and Sunetra Lala, Research Associate

From Aidan Cronin, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), New Delhi

UNICEF supports several initiatives on knowledge sharing in the water and sanitation sector. There are several other large networks in the sector, including the India Water Portal, the India Sanitation Portal, Hindi Water Portal, the Fresh Water Action Network – South Asia , the India Water Partnership and SACIWaters/CAP-NET. There are many more besides these that operate, or have operated, at the state or regional level, or have come into existence in response to a particular issue. Each occupies a certain space and has its own strengths.

There are possibly also overlaps in the work that each network does. In our support to The Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Rural Development, we are trying to map out better how the various networks function, their strengths and weaknesses, their mission and way of operation. A common understanding will help us and the DDWS see areas for synergy. It will also help to pull together the core strengths of these alliances and mission in one place for ready reference. This query is directed at seeking an understanding from the Community members about how they function.

We would like you to comment on

  1. What are the past and current networks working on water, sanitation, water governance, corruption, conflicts and other water-related issues in India ? Please list the name and key contact point(s).
  2. What is or was their (a) core strength, areas of operation, (b) vision, mission, goals and (c) membership and structure?
  3. What are the areas of current cooperation between networks? Are any duplications evident?

We will prepare a map of the networks based on your responses and share it back with the Community.

Responses were received, with thanks, from

1.     K A S Mani, Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater System (APFAMGS), Hyderabad

2.     Amee MankadPRAVAH, Ahmedabad

3.     Eklavya Prasad, Megh Pyne Abhiyan, Bihar

4.     Anjal Prakash, SaciWATERs, Hyderabad

5.     Nitya Jacob, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), New Delhi

6.     Murali Kochukrishnan, IL &FS (Ecosmart Ltd), Mumbai

7.     Chitra Shrivastav, Pragati, Jabalpur

8.     Himanshu Thakkar, South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People, New Delhi

9.     Depinder Kapur, India WASH Forum (IWF), New Delhi

10. Deepak Menon, Arghyam, Bangalore

11. K J Joy, Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management, Pune

12. Achyut Das, Agragamee, Rayagada

13. Ranjan Panda, MASS, Sambalpur

14. Pradeep Mohapatra, Udayama, Bhubaneshwar

15. Babu Ambat, Centre for Environment and Development (CED), Thiruvananthapuram

16. Ramakrishna Nallathiga, Centre for Good Governance, Hyderabad

17. Susmita Sinha, CDD Society, Bangalore

18. Veena Khanduri, India Water Partnership (IWP), New Delhi

19. Rajesh Shah, Peer Water Exchange, Bangalore

20. Jayati Chourey, South Asia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Water Resources Studies, Secunderabad

Further contributions are welcome!

Summary of Responses

Related Resources

Responses in Full

Summary of Responses

There are many networks working on water and sanitation in India at the national, state and local levels. Their activities range from project implementation and community mobilisation to raising awareness and advocacy with the government. Some networks comprise of people from non-government organisations (NGOs) but most have members from the government and private sector as well. All networks promote people’s participation or leadership in water and sanitation. A few are the Indian or regional counterparts of international networks. Thus, the water networks scene is a smorgasbord of issues, membership, activities and people.

 

In this situation, overlaps are inevitable. There are some networks and consortia working to promote integrated water resources management (IWRM), though each has a somewhat different focus. For example, SaciWATERs-CapNet Network’s vision is to strengthen the human and institutional capacity by adopting an integrated approach within water sector in South Asia region through education and training; research; knowledge based development; advocacy; and networking. The India Water Partnership is a partner-based network that facilitates the activities of the Global Water Partnership to promote IWRM. Its strength is the international experience it beings to bear.

 

There are many networks working on sanitation; their main thrust is similar but the approach varies. The Centre for Environment and Development has a portal on waste management with state-of-the-art information. The Consortium of DEWATS Dissemination’s (CDD) mission is to improve the social, economic and environmental conditions of the poor by providing basic needs (such as sanitation) in a decentralised manner. The India WASH Forum advocates for sanitation at the national level and has a membership comprising of senior practitioners.

 

Odisha is the most active state in terms of water networks, with as many as three active ones. The Odisha Water Forum focuses on policy, climate change and IWRM. Water Initiatives Odisha, set up much earlier, works on climate change, IWRM and water conflicts, among other topics. Udayama works on community water management. In other states, there is the Megh Pyne Abhiyan in Bihar, a network of five NGOs working in the flood-prone areas of the state to help people become resilient to floods and improve the management of common property resources. In Andhra Pradesh, the Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater Systems (APFAMGS) project is a network of 9 NGOs that have come together to work under a Nodal NGO BIRDS for implementing community led demand side groundwater management programs in 638 habitations spread over 7 districts of Andhra Pradesh. Currently the same network continues to implement climate change adaptations adopting the community led demand side management approach. In Gujarat, PRAVAH is a network which advocates for people-centered decentralized inclusive systems in drinking water and sanitation since 1994 with an initial membership of 60 organisations. It promotes sharing information, advocacy, research and documentation and networking among members. Each state network is grounded in the local milieu and is a strong advocate for water.

 

There are some networks that work on other clearly-defined themes as well. The South Asia Network of Dams Rivers and People is a network of people working on dams and rivers. The Forum for Policy Dialogue on Conflicts (FPDC) documents water conflicts, conducts action research on conflict resolution, conflict prevention and networking. It has two state centres in Kerala and Odisha and is setting another up in the north-east. It plans to work with the Megh Pyne Abhiyan in Bihar. The Centre for Environment and Development focuses on solid waste and waste water management. It is a network of nearly 300 NGOs working under the National Environmental Awareness Campaign of the Ministry of Environment and ForestsThe Peer Water Exchange is a combination of process, technology, and a human network designed to India 's water and sanitation issues. It is more than a network, it is an exchange - a social development exchange - where all transactions are tracked and collaboration is enforced. PWX is a database of water and sanitation projects; one which invites all members of the public to participate and see what is working years after the projects start.

 

The Rashtriya Jal Biradari is national network of grassroots NGOs and practitioners working on community-led water conservation. It was set up in 1990. It is organized into state units, each headed by a coordinator. It has come out of efforts of the Tarun Bharat Sangh to organize villages and communities across India for managing their water resources more efficiently.

 

The India Water Portal is exactly that, a portal on water resources at the national level. Set up at the behest of the National Knowledge Commission, it is a large repository of information on water resources. With about 4,000 self-registered users, it is also one of the bigger Indian assemblies on water and sanitation. It has a knowledge base, blog, calendar, and carries news and meteorological data. Other affiliated portals are the Hindi Water Portal, the School Water Portal, Conflicts Water Portal, Kannada Water Portal and India Sanitation Portal.

 

The Water Community of Solution Exchange promotes collaborative knowledge building in water and sanitation. It is national network of about 3700 practitioners working on water, sanitation and governance. Another network, WES-Net is a learning alliance of stakeholders in the water and environmental sanitation sector, including NGOs, UN agencies, private sector, consultants, government departments and donors. Its objective is to improve knowledge sharing and co-ordination within the water and sanitation sector.

 

Membership of almost all networks is open to practitioners and experts from the sector. Some like the Rashtriya Jal Biradari and India Water Portal have large memberships. Others like CDD are smaller with just 20 members. However, membership is not automatic and has to be approved in nearly all cases.

Nearly all the networks cooperate with each other on both short- and long-term activities. FPDC and Megh Pyne Abhiyan are working on a long-term partnership. The Water Community and India Water Portal have a content sharing agreement. The Water Community had another content agreement with WES-Net under which the latter’s members would answer technical queries, while the former would take the more general discussions. IWP set up the Water Conflicts Portal for FPDC, and jointly runs the India Sanitation Portal with WaterAid. This picture of water networks in India places the major ones in several categories at once, in terms of their activities, membership and geographical area of activity.

Related Resources 

Recommended Organizations and Programmes

Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater System (APFAMGS), Andhra Pradesh(from K A S Mani)

Block No. A-2(c), First Floor, Huda Commercial Complex, Tarnaka Hyderabad 500007 Andhra Pradesh; Tel: 91-40-27014730; Fax: 91-40-27014937; plapfamgs@sify.com;

http://www.apfamgs.org/Default.aspxftp://ftp.solutionexchange.net.in/public/wes/cr/res-15041101.docx; Contact K. A. S. Mani; Project Leader; Tel: 91-40-27014730; info@apfamgs.org

Launched in July 2003, the APFAMGS project is a network with NGOs and farmers for implementing demand side groundwater management concept

PRAVAH, Gujarat(from Amee Mankad)

27/B, Green Park , Society, Near Kabadi Market, Behrampura, Ahmedabad 380022, Gujarat ; Tel: 91-79-25351943; amee.mankad@gmail.comwww.pravah-gujarat.org

A network which advocates for people-centered decentralized inclusive systems in drinking water and sanitation

SaciWATERs-CapNet Network (SCaN), Andhra Pradesh(from Anjal Prakash)

Plot No. 125 and 126, S.P. Colony, Trimulgherry, Secunderabad 500015, Andhra Pradesh; Tel: 91-40-27796721; Fax: 91-40-27796721; jayati@saciwaters.org;

http://www.saciwaters.org/scan/index.html

A platform for partnership towards capacity building in Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) across the South Asian region

From Nitya Jacob, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), New Delhi

Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts, Maharashtra

16, Kale Park , Someshwarwadi Road , Pashan, Pune 411008 Maharashtra; Tel: 91-020-25880786; Fax: 91-020-25886542; soppecom@gmail.com;

http://www.conflicts.indiawaterportal.org/node/11

It is a platform to bring together all those interested in working on issues related to water conflicts in India into a loose network for action and interaction

Arghyam, Karnataka

Number 599, 12th Main, HAL 2nd Stage, Indiranagar, Bangalore 560008, Karnataka; Tel: 91-80-41698941; Fax: 91-80-41698943; info@arghyam.orghttp://www.arghyam.org/ASHWAS

Supports the India Water Portal and the Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts, both of which are networks working on water and sanitation

Rashtriya Jal Biradari, Rajasthan

Tarun Ashram, Bheekampura Kishori, Thanagazi, Alwar, Rajasthan; Tel: 91-1465-225043; rajendra@tarunbharatsangh.org;

http://www.tarunbharatsangh.org/rashtriya%20jal%20biradari.html

A network set up in 1990, it comprises of grassroots workers involved in water conservation and NGOs from all over India

Samvedma-A Society For Global Concerns, Madhya Pradesh(from Chitra Shrivastav, Pragati, Jabalpur)

60,Nayagaon Housing Society, Jabalpur ; Tel: 91-9424955700; chitra.shrivastav@gmail.comhttp://samvedna-asocietyforglobalconcern.blogspot.com/

A network working on environmental issues with several schools in Madhya Pradesh

South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People (SANDRP), New Delhi(from Himanshu Thakkar)

86-D, AD Block, Shalimar Bagh, Delhi 110088; Tel: 91-11-27484654; cwaterp@vsnl.comhttp://www.sandrp.in/

An informal network of individuals and groups concerned with issues related to dams, rivers and other related issues

India WASH Forum, New Delhi(from Depinder Kapur)

K-U, 6 Pitampura, Delhi 110034; Tel: 91-9711178181; dskapur100@gmail.com;

http://www.wsscc.org/countries/asia/india/wash-coalition-overview

It operates as a voluntary coalition for advocacy in the WASH sector, also engaged with the operationalisation of the Global Sanitation Fund in India

From K J Joy, Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management, Maharashtra

Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management (SOPPECOM), Maharashtra

16, Kale Park , Someshwarwadi Road , Pashan, Pune 411008 Maharashtra; Tel: 91-020-25880786; Fax: 91-020-25886542; soppecom@gmail.comhttp://www.soppecom.org/

It functions as the secretariat of the Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India, based in Maharashtra

Aaranyak, Assam

50, Samanwoy Path, Survey, P.O. - Beltola, Guwahati 781028, Assam ; Tel: 91-361-2230250; Fax: 91-361-2228418; info@aaranyak.orghttp://www.aaranyak.org/index.html

Is documenting different types of water conflicts in the North East in collaboration with the Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India

Orissa Water Forum, Orissa(from Achyut Das, Agragamee, Rayagada)

Agragamee, ND-8, V.I.P Area, Nayapalli, IRC Village , Bhubaneswar 751015, Orissa; orissawaterforum@gmail.com

A civil society alliance looking into the issues of water security and climate change in Orissa

Water Initiatives Odisha (WIO), Orissa(from Ranjan Panda, MASS, Sambalpur)

R-3/A-4, J. M. Colony, Budharaja, Sambalpur 768004 Orissa; Tel: 91-919437050103; ranjanpanda@gmail.com;http://www.climatecrusaders.blogspot.com/

Is an informal network of civil society, media, researchers and farmers working on issues of water, environment and climate change

Udayama, Orissa(from Pradeep Mohapatra)

Plot No. HIG - 283, K-5 Kalinga Vihar, Post. Patrapada Bhubaneswar 751019, Orissa; Tel: 91-674-2475656; udyamapradeep@gmail.com

Works with various CSOs and networks on issues of water and sanitation, particularly community water resource development

Centre for Environment and Development (CED), Tamil Nadu(from Babu Ambat)

Thozhuvancode, Vattiyoorkavu P.O Thiruvananthapuram 695013, Tamil Nadu; Tel: 91-471-2369720; Fax: 91-471-2369720; director@cedindia.orgwww.cedindia.org

A network of nearly 300 organisations working  as part of the National Environmental Awareness Campaign of MoEnvironment and Forest, Government of India

From Ramakrishna Nallathiga, Centre for Good Governance, Hyderabad

The Energy Research Institute (TERI), New Delhi

Darbari Seth Block, IHC Complex, Lodhi Road , New Delhi 110003; Tel: 91-11-24682100; Fax: 91-11-24682144; mailbox@teri.res.in;

http://www.teriin.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=16

Works, in collaboration with several NGOs across India, on issues of sustainable development, including water resources

Centre for Science and Environment, New Delhi

41, Tughlakabad Institutional Area, New Delhi 110062; Tel: 91-11-29955124; Fax: 91-11-29955879; cse@cseindia.orghttp://www.cseindia.org/

Is a public interest research and advocacy organisation based, researches into, lobbies for and communicates the urgency of development that is both sustainable and equitable

Global Water Partnership, Sweden

GWP Global Secretariat, Drottninggatan 33, SE-111 51 Stockholm, Sweden; Tel: 46-8-52212630; Fax: 46-8-52212631; gwp@gwpforum.orghttp://www.gwp.org/en/About-GWP/

Was founded by the United Nations Development Programme and  Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency to foster integrated water resource management

World Wide Fund for Nature, New Delhi

172 B, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi 110003; Tel: 91-11-41504815; Fax: 91-11-24691226 rmishra@wwfindia.nethttp://www.wwfindia.org/about_wwf/

Is a conservation organization dedicated to building a healthy living planet for future generations

Administrative Staff College of India, Andhra Pradesh

Bella Vista, Raj Bhavan Road, Khairatabad, Hyderabad 500082, Andhra Pradesh; Tel: 91-40-66533000; Fax: 91-40-23312945; skrao@asci.org.inhttp://www.asci.org.in/Introducation.aspx

ASCI is known as the college for practicing managers that pioneered post-experience management education in India, and has conducted projects on water management

WaterAid India, New Delhi

C-3 Gate 1, Above Nursery School, Nelson Mandela Marg. Vasant Kunj, New Delhi 110070; Tel: 91-11-46084400; Fax: 91-11-46084411; wai@wateraid.org;

http://www.wateraid.org/india/default.asp

Has worked with networks of women SHGs, and NGOs to develop successful models for successful sanitation coverage, mostly for women and girls

Consortium for DEWATS Dissemination (CDD), Karnataka(from Susmita Sinha)

621, 5th Main Road , OMBR Layout, Banaswadi Post, Bangalore 560043, Karnataka; Tel: 91-80-25452804; Fax: 91-80-25452805; bangalore@cddindia.orghttp://www.cddindia.org/index.shtml

A network organisation which looks to collaborations and networking for meeting the Millennium Development Goals

Peer Water Exchange, Karnataka(from Rajesh Shah)

163, Laughing Waters, Varthur Road , Ramagondanahalli, Bangalore 560066, Karnataka; Tel: 1-510-3384538; Fax: 1-4157624340; info@blueplanetnetwork.orghttp://www.peerwater.org

Is a combination of process, technology, and a human network designed to India's water and sanitation issues

Megh Pyne Abhiyan, Bihar(from Eklavya Prasad)

A-702, Abhiyant, CGHS, Vasundhra Enclave, Delhi 110009; Tel: 9810307445;

graminunatti@gmail.com

A campaign involving people around the issue of water and sanitation, and a functional network of grassroots organizations

Recommended Portals and Information Bases

India Water Portal, Arghyam, Karnataka (from Deepak Menon)

http://indiawaterportal.org; Contact Deepak Menon; Manager; Tel: 91-80-41698941; deepak@arghyam.org

Membership driven portal on water and sanitation, also hosts other portals on conflicts, schools and sanitation 

Responses in Full 

K A S Mani, Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater System (APFAMGS), Hyderabad

The Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater System (APFAMGS) project a network of 9 NGOs have come together to work under a Nodal NGO BIRDS for implementing community led demand side groundwater management programs in 638 habitations spread over 7 districts of Andhra Pradesh (2004-2009). Currently the same network continues to implement climate change adaptations adopting the community led demand side management approach (2011-2014).

Additionally there are 63 registered hydrological unit network (HUN) institutions that are responsible for implementing field level activities.

For more details please visit ftp://ftp.solutionexchange.net.in/public/wes/cr/res-15041101.docx (DOC; Size: 19KB)

Amee MankadPRAVAH, Ahmedabad

In Gujarat , PRAVAH is a network which advocates for people-centered decentralized inclusive systems in drinking water and sanitation since 1994 with an initial membership of 60 organisations.  The formation of the network was the result of collective concerns raised and interest expressed by several individuals and institutions for addressing complex challenges in the area of drinking water and related developmental issues. It works as a networking and policy advocacy body and was registered under the Charitable Trust and Societies Registration Act in November 1996 with a secretariat functioning from Ahmedabad. The Board of Trustees consists mainly of heads of member of voluntary organizations and some veterans. The general body comprises members of voluntary organizations and concerned individuals. Presently (2010-11), there are 147 members.  

To realize the goals and objectives, PRAVAH initially employed four broad strategies shared by the member organisations:

1.      Networking

2.      Information sharing

3.      Advocacy

4.      Research and Documentation

The work of PRAVAH as a membership-based network in Gujarat is to promote decentralized safe, adequate and sustainable, community-managed systems for drinking water and sanitation to all, throughout the year. It seeks equitable access to safe drinking water and the available of basic WATSAN amenities for all. PRAVAH’s role is that of supporting the efforts of the member organizations in promoting an agreed set of values and approach in their interventions in WATSAN. This work includes joint information and education campaigns, sharing knowledge, supporting research, disseminating information, and helping capacity building efforts, carrying out policy advocacy, undertaking documentation and liaison with Government.

For more details kindly visit www.pravah-gujarat.org

Eklavya Prasad, Megh Pyne Abhiyan, Bihar

Megh Pyne Abhiyan (MPA), literally clouds’ water campaign, is at the same time a campaign, involving people around the issue of water and sanitation, and a functional network of grassroots organizations. MPA has been operational across five flood prone districts of North Bihar - Supaul, Saharsa, Khagaria, Madhubani and West Champaran, since 2005 in partnership with five separate grassroots organizations – Gramyasheel, Supaul; Kosi Seva Sadan, Saharsa; Samta, Khagaria; Ghoghardiha Prakhand Swarajya Vikas Sangh, Madhubani and Water Action, Paschim Champaran in collaboration with social development professionals and resource groups.

MPA is a belief and commitment about inspiring a behavioural change amongst the flood affected rural population of north Bihar , to revive the resilience to improve individual and collective wellbeing. MPA’s purpose is to

  • Construct a congenial social environment, by stimulating cooperative action and accountability towards shared problems 
  • Create a congenial social environment through sustainable technological innovations and adaptation of conventional wisdom in order to ensure a shared, sustainable and effective management of water.
  • However, much beyond that, the wider mandate is to stimulate collective action and accountability towards a ‘common good’ amongst the local habitants for grassroots cooperation, through
  • Developing community based practices for challenging the present trend of dependence on external sources and proposing an alternative approach of self-reliance
  • Instigating a behavioural change of rural communities with regards of common property resources and institutions, building self management as an attitude towards local problems
  • Building a critical mass of human resources for dealing with the local problems and in executing need based interventions while aiming at innovations

MPA has customized its concept and processes to reinforce and advocate the functional paradigm of contextual alternative WATSAN and agricultural practices. The endeavor is towards facilitating access to safe drinking water and secure sanitation in the flood prone areas of north Bihar . The process of which is governed by

Long term objectives

  • Establishing the concept and technology of alternative WATSAN for flood prone areas
  •         Establishing community evolved and owned, contextual WATSAN facilities for the flood prone areas of north Bihar
  •         Establishing the relevance of geo-hydrology in identifying WATSAN technologies and micro-irrigation facilities for flood  plains of north Bihar
  •         Developing a feasibility correlation between geo-hydrology profile and dynamics of the flood plains of north Bihar and proposed alternative WATSAN and agricultural technologies
  •         Working out strategy to prioritize groundwater needs at the grassroots
  •         Forging partnership with district administration and state government in order to mainstream alternative WATSAN appropriate for flood prone areas
  •         Building a critical mass for propagating alternative technologies across flood prone areas of the state and
  •         Enhancing capacities of villagers, public representatives, district administration, engineers and politicians with regard to the alternative technologies in context to the geo-hydrological profile of the flood plains of Bihar

Short term objectives

  •         Strengthening and popularizing the concept and technique of local solutions to access safe drinking and sanitation during and post floods
  •         Inculcating the habit of adopting low cost technology with high cost returns
  •         Establishing the functional framework for integrating selection of alternative technology facilities as per the geo-hydrological specifications
  •         Strengthening the capacities of the local craft persons (potters and bamboo weavers), masons and farmers to develop the technologies at the community level
  •         Executing local field action research with the purpose of locating solutions within the position of problems and
  •         Developing innovative IEC for propagating alternative practices

Anjal Prakash, SaciWATERs, Hyderabad

I think mapping the current networks around water and sanitation is a good exercise and its analysis may bring in some core issues around knowledge sharing and networking in the region. Aidan already mentioned the SaciWATERs-CapNet Network but I take this opportunity to elaborate this further for the larger Water Community .

The SaciWATERs-CapNet Network (SCaN) is a platform for partnership towards capacity building in Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) across the South Asia region. It comprises of autonomous regional and national institutions and individuals committed to capacity building in the water sector. The network has been conceptualized by SaciWATERs in partnership with Cap-Net, an international network for capacity building in IWRM. SaciWATERs hosts the network and acts as its legal, administrative and financial umbrella. The vision of the network is to strengthen the human and institutional capacity by adopting an integrated approach within water sector in South Asia region through education and training; research; knowledge based development; advocacy; and networking. The network is engaged at South Asia level for (1) Facilitating network members to conduct capacity building programmes in IWRM through partnerships; (2) providing network members a platform for sharing skills, expertise and resources to strengthen and upscale their efforts and impact in IWRM and (3) Expanding multidisciplinary knowledge base in IWRM and its reach in the water sector.

The membership of SCaN is open and inclusive and is operated based on mutual benefits and trust. It aims to integrate the available skills and knowledge, which is otherwise scattered throughout various institutes and disciplines. Individuals and institutions from varied disciplines interested in the capacity building activities in IWRM are welcome to join the network. Network members should be willing to share their expertise, experiences and resources. The benefits of members are multiple – first it makes the member eligible to apply for funding to Cap-Net towards capacity building activities; second it makes the members eligible for participating in various capacity building activities organised by Cap-Net, SaciWATERs and their partners and third, the additional benefits include sharing of resources; improved delivery capacity through accessing multi sectoral knowledge and skills; economies of scale; learning environment; enhanced impact; increased visibility, influence and prominence. For more information, you can log on to http://www.saciwaters.org/scan/index.html.

For more details you can contact Dr. Jayati Chourey through emailing at jayati@saciwaters.org.

Nitya Jacob, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), New Delhi

The query seeks information on current networks and some have provided great insights into what is happening. I would like to add something about my perceptions of three large networks at the national level. The PDF file ftp://ftp.solutionexchange.net.in/public/wes/cr/res-15041101.pdf (460 KB).

There are several other formal networks working on specific topics. These include

1.    Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India . The Forum is an effort to bring together all those interested in working on issues related to water conflicts in India into a loose network for action and interaction. The Forum’s work does not take place in a vacuum. The Forum's work acknowledges, complements, adds value to and generally supports work that is already being done by NGOs, civil society groups and people’s organizations. Networking is therefore an important function. The forum therefore aims at and encourages a very wide process of network building. Networking includes dialogue and

a.      Action research leading to hands on experience (and hence increased credibility)

b.      Outreach, especially to local bodies

c.      Learning from other initiatives and the creation of and the dissemination of an expanding collective knowledge base.

It received funds from the World Wide Fund for Nature in its initial stages, and is now partially supported by Arghyam. The main contact person is K J Joy.

2.      Rashtriya Jal Biradari is a network set up in 1990. It comprises of grassroots workers involved in water conservation and NGOs from all over India . It is organized into state units, each headed by a coordinator. It has come out of efforts of the Tarun Bharat Sangh to organize villages and communities across India for managing their water resources more efficiently. The main contact person is Rajendra Singh.

I see many networks work together on specific topics but pursue their own agendas for the most part. For example, the Water Community of Solution Exchange has worked with the Forum on specific discussions aimed at bringing out instances of conflicts over water (concerning mining and drinking water) and ways to resolve them. Similarly the Water Community has collaborated with the APFAMGS network, mentioned in an earlier response, to seek out other models of groundwater management.

Murali Kochukrishnan, IL &FS (Ecosmart Ltd), Mumbai

Your initiative to get  convergence of  activities of all the organization working on water and sanitation is highly appreciable. But however, to the best of my understanding, most of the networks and projects do perform well and has created several good impacts as long as the availability of funds are assured. Once, the funding sources have become diminishing, the output of the project initiatives and activities  also slow down.

Well, we could see several overlap of activities within the Government system itself of various states. Hence, our effort of streamlining the system should start from the Government and then move onto the civil societies to get a clear state picture and synergy. Also to mention, that there are several CSR activities which also fall in the above line of preview. Hence, the mapping of networks should be an integrated approach by considering all the efforts of Government, civil societies, CSR activities of industries, etc.

Chitra Shrivastav, Pragati, Jabalpur

Samvedma-A Society For Global Concerns ,60,Nayagaon Housing Society, Jabalpur, M.P. is taking up various issues of natural resource Management including water management. The contact persons are Ms. Aparagita Agarwal, (mob-9424955700) and Dr. Chitra Shrivastav (mob-9893433197).

Himanshu Thakkar, South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People, New Delhi

SANDRP (South Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People) is an informal network of individuals and groups concerned on issues around dams, rivers and related issues. It came into existence in 1997-98 and the kind of work we do can be seen from our website www.sandrp.in and our magazine "Dams, Rivers & People", the various past issues of the magazine can also be seen on the website at www.sandrp.in/drpindex. It is largely focused on dams, rivers, water, irrigation, hydropower and related issues in India , with interest in related issues in South Asian countries.

Depinder Kapur, India WASH Forum (IWF), New Delhi

The India WASH Forum (IWF) is a WASH coalition that was formalized as a registered Trust in 2008. It was operating as an informal group till then with support from Water and Sanitation Collaborative Council and WaterAid India . Learning from the experience of WesNet, it was decided that India WASH Forum will be lead by a mix of practitioners, committed individuals and experts who will be Trustees of IWF in their individual capacity and not the organizations they represent.

IWF operates as a voluntary coalition for advocacy in the WASH sector. We bring out a bi monthly e newsletter (17 issues electronically disseminated till date) and undertake atleast one annual learning and advocacy initiative at the national level. We are also engaged with the operationalisation of the Global Sanitation Fund in India with some of the Trustees being members of the governance structure of the GSF programme in India – called the Programme Coordination Mechanism.

Our publications and e newsletters are currently available on the India page of the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council.

Our core strength is national level advocacy as an independent credible voice in the WASH sector. Our newsletter and our annual learning events represent a high quality of analysis. We do not have a large organizational structure or paid staff and work on the strength and time that the Trustees of IWF can commit. Our relative independence provides us with the scope of critique and learning from all other WASH organizations and government programmes. We do not undertake capacity building or project implementation. Hence we do not compete with or duplicate the efforts of any other WASH NGO or network.

We are supported by WaterAid India for some of our activities.  IWF is well linked with FANSA and WesNet. We are represented on the WesNet board and have work together with FANSA for SACOSAN and other initiatives.

Deepak Menon, Arghyam, Bangalore

Mapping these water networks operating in India/on India is a great idea. A joint consultation of these networks for discussing some of the areas of possible collaboration should be considered at some time. 

India Water Portal

India Water Portal was an idea mooted by the National Knowledge Commission as one of the elements of a knowledge economy. It is financed and managed by Arghyam, a non-profit foundation based in Bangalore . 

Vision and Strengths

The Water Portal grew out of the felt need for a single location pulling together various resources in the area of water. This was one of the themes that came out of the First Arghyam conference held in February 2005. The National Knowledge Commission has been a strong proponent of the idea of knowledge portals in various areas, including water. 

The Water Portal is an open platform, where anyone can become a member. Currently, we have around 4000 self-registered users on the main English Water Portal. We are also connected to several journalists in the Hindi media, and teachers, and teachers network as part of the Schools Water Portal. 

Over the years, we have developed capabilities on technology, communications and content. The internet gives us a natural scale, and we are grateful to our partners (water experts, research institutions, NGOs, government departments, hydrogeologists, corporates, IT specialists, educators) who have contributed content, time and advice over the past 5 years.

We believe that the India Water Portal has the potential to catalyse change on a large-scale by this sharing of knowledge leading to improved practices and informed debate

Detailed Activities

The following gives a sense of what we see as our mandate and our role in the sector :  

Hindi Water Portal

Besides the main Water Portal, we have the Hindi Portal (http://hindi.indiawaterportal.org) which has the seen great adoption by the Hindi internet audience. The Hindi Water Portal focuses on simple digestible content covering impact work done by individuals, NGOs, government and industry. Often times, the articles that we publish are picked by the mainstream Hindi media, thus amplifying the message.

The Forum (Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India ) is an effort to bring together all those interested in working on issues related to water conflicts in India into a loose network for action and interaction. The Forum maintains the Conflicts Water Portal(http://conflicts.indiawaterportal.org)

The Schools Water Portal (http://schools.indiawaterportal.org) contains a huge number of teaching aids for communicating to children about water, and making water learning fun.

We have also created a Kannada Water Portal (http://kannada.indiawaterportal.org) which however has not seen a lot of activity.

We also maintain active Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, Slideshare, Blip.tv and Facebook accounts.

The India Sanitation Portal (http://indiasanitationportal.org) which was launched at SACOSAN 2008 is a joint initiative with WaterAid, UNICEF, WASH Institute, Water For People and other organisations and with the support of the Department for Drinking Water Supply. Currently, the Sanitation Portal is financed jointly by WaterAid and Arghyam at this point

Future Projects:-

Two of the future projects we are working on are as follows:

  •         To make an exhaustive compilation of water data available in the sector, which would be a very useful reference for practitioners. To also create an online platform where a large portion  of this data would be pre-loaded so that practitioners can quickly and easily do fairly complex visualization and analysis of the data.
  •         To have a program of water testing in schools (Concept note is being prepared)

The Water Portal has been receiving about 3000 visitors a day across the various sites. The audience is primarily people in the sector. We maintain a mailing list on which we post a fortnightly newsletter. We have separate newsletters for the Hindi Portal as well. 

All the portals work together, and maintain the same technological infrastructure. Content teams are separate for all portals, and communication strategies are discussed and debated before being finalized.

K J Joy, Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management, Pune

This is to add to what Nitya Jacob has already written about the Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India (Forum to be brief). Forum is presently involved in four types of activities:

1)     Documentation of different types of water conflicts in the country

2)     Conflict resolution (the Forum through its two state centres in Kerala and Odisha has taken up two conflicts for action research with an idea to resolve as well as learn from this process)

3)     Conflict prevention (exploring possibilities of preventing water conflicts by trying to build up consensus around some of the critical issues like water allocations for different uses, the institutional and legal issues related to conflict resolution. The Forum set up two working groups to come up with position papers on these two themes and one report on allocations and entitlements titled, “Life. Livelihoods, Ecosystems and Culture: Entitlements and Allocations of Water for Competing Uses has just come out)

4)     Networking (basically through the above three activities).   

Anybody who is interested in the water sector issues can become a member by filling in a form which is available on the Forum website. It has a Steering Committee which takes is the main decision making body and has also an Advisory Committee consisting of some of the important names in the water sector. The secretariat for the Forum is located in Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management (SOPPECOM), Pune. It has two state centres – one in Kerala (managed by the Chalakudy River Protection Committee and the contact person is Dr. A. Latha) and the other one Odisha managed by Shrishti and the contact person is Pranab Choudhury. The Forum has recently started documentation of different types of water conflicts in the North East in collaboration with Aaranyak ad the contact person are Dr. Partha Das and Dr. Chandan Mahanta. Also the Forum would soon start the documentation of flood related conflicts and this effort would be coordinated by Eklavya Prasad of Megh Pyne Abhiyan.

For more information on the Forum, do have look at the website, URL://conflicts.indiawatrportal.org

Achyut Das, Agragamee, Rayagada

We in Orissa have formed a Civil Society alliance called the Orissa Water Forum which has the mandate to campaign Water security for All. It is currently looking at the Water Policy framework, IWRM, Climate Change Action Plan, etc., if there are pro-people and pro-poor. On its behalf, we are publishing an Oriya newsletter “Pani Samastanka Pain” (Water For All). We have also an e-group called Waterrightsorissa to promote exchanges on various water issues.  

The Orissa Water Forum has already formed district water fora in 13 districts with large number of members. Through these, there are wide civil society consultations on burning issues like drought, flood, diversion of water from agriculture to industries, river pollution,  inter-basin transfer, water logging, etc. The Orissa Water Forum and the district fora celebrate the World Water Day and the World Wetland Day.

Many experts of the Orissa Water Forum are contributing to the media by writing articles and participating in TV debates.

Ranjan Panda, MASS, Sambalpur

Water Initiatives Odisha (WIO) is an informal but the most active network of civil society, media, researchers, farmers and others concerned that has been at the forefront of actions and advocacy on water, environment and climate change issues in the state of Odisha. 

It came into being in the year 1990 during a consultation organised by Sambalpur-based civil society organisation MASS on the potential of traditional water harvesting to mitigate drought in Odisha.  With initial few years of promoting grassroots actions to revive traditional water harvesting knowledge and technique and bring those to the mainstream water planning and discourse, WIO expanded its work sphere to several aspects of water action and advocacy. 

WIO is the first network in the state to have raised the impact of climate change on water and has organised several meetings, seminars and studies in this regard and has been working constantly on this for about two decades now. In fact, we would like to inform the group that, during the initial years of our formation, when we talked about climate change and its impact on the state of Odisha, several people and institutions – who are not active on climate change issues – laughed at us and did not believe.

Here are a few of the several initiatives we have taken so far in our two decades of work:

1.      Study of the Satabhaya beach erosion due to climate change and mass awareness on climate change in the state

2.      Study on desertification in the state of Odisha and constant monitoring of drought, disasters and their impact on water, lives and livelihood

3.      Studies on Pani Panchayats; mining and its impact on water and sanitation; Clean Development Mechanism; Dams and climate change, etc

4.      A massive people’s perception study on climate change in the state. A people-to-people campaign on climate change was also initiated with that

5.      State level water harvesters’ conference and institution of two awards for individual and community level contribution to water conservation, harvesting, education and awareness

6.      A quarterly newsletter (the first of its kind to be started in the state) exclusively dealing with water and climate change

7.      Building people’s agenda on water and sanitation for COPs, SACOSAN, Gram Panchayat election, Assembly elections and Parliament elections

8.      National workshop on Climate Change, Drinking Water and Sanitation

9.      State level workshop in Integrated Water Resources Management: Building a people’s charter

10.   First Orissa River Conference that started the debate in the state on river water management, conflicts over rivers and related issues

11.   Extensive documentation of the water conflicts of the state

12.   Studies of the urban and rural water bodies, water supply systems and sanitation

13.   Constant monitoring and advocacy on investments in water sector by IFIs, MDBs and other investors

14.   Advocating for green and water judicious energy plans.

We are constantly promoting people’s centric basin management plan, river parliaments, water harvesting and management, environment education among children, water judicious agriculture, climate resilient livelihood models based on natural resources.  We have also initiated a "Save Odisha's Rivers Campaign" and "Combat Climate Change Network".  

WIO is promoting formation of district level chapters in each district of Odisha and is having several plans to promote similar types of initiatives as listed above and several new endeavours through its wide network in the state.  It is also open to networking with other organisations at state, national and international levels.

Pradeep Mohapatra, Udayama, Bhubaneshwar

We must appreciate the initiatives of various CSOs and networks doing consistently on water and sanitation issues, and formulating strategies  based on challenges & opportunities. More micro-projects are also being undertaken by many  CBOs and grass root organisations  in order to address local water  & sanitation issues. Today Udayama DYAMA is also doing a lot for community water resource development in the hinterlands as well as initiating citizen action in rural and urban areas. Udayama is also contributing and sharing local and global issues relating to water issues. 

http://www.waterclimatecoalition.org/index.php/members.html

http://www.stakeholderforum.org/fileadmin/files/Work%20Programme%20on%20Water%20and%20Climate%20-%20Analysis%20and%20Roadmap.pdf

Babu Ambat, Centre for Environment and Development (CED), Thiruvananthapuram

The Centre for Environment and Development (CED), Thiruvananthapuram, which is the Centre of Excellence of the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India on Solid Waste and Waste Water Management, has established a web portal www.indiawastemanagementportal.org to provide information and knowledge support to local governments on SWM and WWM. We have network of nearly 300 organisations working under us as part of the National Environmental Awareness Campaign of MoEF, GoI. We have initiated information exchange programmes through our Portal and also through our Environmental Education Network (www.cededunet.org).

CED is providing technical/technological and knowledge support to any individual/organisations in the areas of water, environmental sanitation and health and hygiene. Also refer our main website www.cedindia.org

Ramakrishna Nallathiga, Centre for Good Governance, Hyderabad

There are a good number of Non-profit organisations and their network (associate branches or partners) working on various aspects of water. Some of them include:

  •         The Energy Research Institute (TERI)
  •         Centre for Science and Environment (CSE)
  •         Water Aid
  •         Arghyam
  •         Global Water Partnership ( India )
  •         World Wide Fund for Nature
  •         Water and Land Management Institutes in some States

There is an overlap of the objectives of these institutes, as they emerged with different backdrops and took specific purpose as the focus area of their activities. Currently, there are few forums that attempt to bring them on one platform - WESNET and Water Community (UNSE). The Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI) also plays some role as a consulting and advisory institution to government and donor agencies.

Susmita Sinha, CDD Society, Bangalore

In our collective efforts to reach more and more people with adequate and appropriate water and sanitation, Consortium for DEWATS Dissemination (CDD) Society, itself a network organisation, looks to collaborations and networking for taking strong and sure strides towards the Millennium Development Goals.

The Consortium for DEWATS Dissemination (CDD) Society is a nongovernmental organisation. With a modest beginning in 2002, it was formally registered as non-profit Society in 2006. CDD Society aims to promote and improve the social, economic and environmental conditions of the less privileged, disadvantaged and marginalised people in South Asia through the provision of decentralised basic needs services (DBNS). The CDD Society has its headquarters in Bangalore and Regional Cooperation Offices (RCO) in Nagpur and Chennai. The Society works through its network of likeminded partners across India , Nepal and Pakistan . The CDD Partners coordinate and implement DBNS projects in close cooperation with CDD Society. The Society functions as the network’s secretariat and provides technical, research & development, financial, capacity building, marketing and documentation support to the partners. The CDD approach towards the implementation of the various services is to work with its partner’s right from the concept stage, through the execution to the completion of the project.

The CDD network is a consortium of more than 20 organisations, coordinated by the CDD Society, who are committed to improving the social, economic and environmental conditions of the marginalised in South Asia . The network disseminates decentralised basic needs services across South Asia . The network members and associates represent diverse regions, fields of specialisation within DBNS services and different types of organisations. Apart from DBNS services, each partner is engaged in their own development and environmental fields.

The current members and associates of CDD are made up of government bodies, non-profit organisations, academic institutes and companies. The partners actively participate in the dissemination of DBNS by coordinating and executing DBNS services based on set quality standards.

The CDD Society is working to provide one million marginalised people with access to water, sanitation and energy by 2015. The focus of our work is to improve the living conditions of poor and marginalised sections of the society through the provision of improved basic needs services. This helps in achieving two objectives: reducing poverty and protecting ecology. The key areas of involvement include:

1.      Decentralised Wastewater Treatment Systems (DEWATS)

2.      Community Based Sanitation (CBS)

3.      Decentralised Solid Waste Management (DESWAM)

4.      Citywide Planning for Provision of Decentralised Basic Needs Services (DBNS)

5.      Decentralised Water Supply Systems (DEWASS)

6.      Decentralised Renewable Energy Systems (DERES)

7.      Capacity Building

CDD Society's Capacity Building Programme aims to develop a critical mass of service providers to implement decentralised basic needs services (DBNS) across South Asia . The training modules have been developed by professional practitioners with a strong focus on building up practical skills. The training programmes, which are run in-house or in educational institutes, government bodies, NGOs and elsewhere, strike a balance between theory and practice by using ’learning projects’. These learning projects are live projects supported or implemented by CDD which enable hands-on learning. A unique feature of the CDD training programme is the post-training advice and access to further information and knowledge.

CDD also offers customised training programmes for different skill sets related to DBNS interventions. It has training modules for project managers, concept engineers, design engineers, site engineers, construction supervisors, social coordinators, health and hygiene experts, evaluators and monitoring experts working in architecture, engineering and construction companies, developers, government agencies and departments as well as NGOs.

There is also an effort to systematically disseminate information on DBNS to groups like – political decision makers, specialised departments of municipalities, states and national authorities, ministries, civil society organisations and specialised NGOs – through informative meetings, conferences and illustrative publications.

CDD Society in collaboration with Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association (BORDA, a German NGO and Rajiv Gandhi Rural Housing Corporation Limited, a Government of Karnataka Company has set up the Centre for Advanced Sanitation Solutions (CASS) at Kengeri, Bangalore. CASS is the most efficient means to spread information and know-how on safe sanitation and to evolve all-inclusive solutions for rural and urban sanitation. It is a ‘One-stop solution’ with a comprehensive range of facilities. The Centre consists of five specialised units:

  •         Exhibition Unit
  •         Training Unit
  •         Research & Development Unit
  •         Knowledge Management Unit
  •         Design and Applied Training Unit 

Through our Network we have implemented many projects reaching more than half a million people in India with basic needs services and with our efforts to scale up, I am sure we can reach all the people who our in need of improved and adequate sanitation.

To know more about us please visit our website www.cddindia.org

Veena Khanduri, India Water Partnership (IWP), New Delhi

First of all I am happy that UNICEF has taken up a good initiative to understand the Water Networks in operation in India working for Water and Sanitation at local, national and regional level. It is true that some networks are functional and some are not in existence and new networks for a particular focus are emerging and also powerful for their functioning (although managed without core grant/ funding). The Water Networks of the stakeholders linked together by the common cause can provide knowledge and build capacity to improve water management at all levels. Hence this is a good opportunity to understand how networking approach provides a mechanism for coordinated actions and adds value to the work of many other key development partners by pooling strengths from existing networks. India Water Partnership is one such network which is a neutral and inclusive plate form of network partners (Institutions/ agencies and NGOs) which believe and support the sustainable development and management of water resources at all levels.

India Water Partnership (IWP) is the Country Water Partnership Network functioning under the overall framework of Global Water Partnership (GWP), headquartered at Stockholm , Sweden since 1999.

Out of the 13 regions of GWP, IWP falls under GWP-South Asia (GWP-SAS) region and it is one among the 6 nations of GWP-SAS. IWP as a partner based network organization has been working as a facilitating mechanism of GWP at Country Level for dissemination of Knowledge to promote Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM). As per overall accreditation policy of GWP, IWP takes care of country level activities as per activities identified by IWP in context of India keeping in view strategy framework of GWP and the country component of the regionally oriented activities through network partners. Our 2009-13 key focus areas are as follows:

 

(i)

Strategic Goal-1 :

Promote water as a key part of sustainable development (Good Governance, Transparency, Stakeholder decision making and Sustainable resource use).

 

(ii)

Strategic Goal-2 :

Coping with critical water challenges through partnerships to secure mutual goals (Challenges to Water Security from climate change and growing urbanization, food production and resource related conflicts)

 

(iii)

Strategic Goal-3 :

Reinforce knowledge sharing and communications (Developing capacity to share knowledge to promote a dynamic communications culture, so as to support better water management)

 

(iv)

Strategic Goal-4 :

Build a more effective network (Enhancing the network’s effectiveness and resilience through stronger partnerships, good governance, measuring performance to help learning and financial sustainability)

 

 

Specific activities under each goal are implemented through network partners. The Work Plan of IWP for the year 2011 can be seen from its website – cwp-india.org under heading “Strategy”.

 

 

The major activities undertaken by IWP during 2009 and 2010 are given below:

2009:

  •         Water efficiency Technology for Investigation in Maharashtra
  •         Documentation of success story on groundwater conservation and prospects to
  •         Ensure sustainable water supply in Dargah Sherif of Ajmer , Rajasthan
  •         Integrated Campaign for Drinking Water and Water Saving Technologies in Wangjing River Basin , Manipur
  •         Water Saving Technologies in Eastern India
  •         A Review Study on water Saving Technologies – Some Experiences from Literature and Field
  •         Review on Water Use  Efficiency, Yields and Low Cost Appliances
  •         Viable Options in Drinking Water along the Coastline in Gujarat
  •         Local wisdom for water Harvesting and synergy in water centric program: Lesson from hill Areas
  •         Water Harvesting (Quality & quantity) with community involvement- A case study of Bangalore
  •         Low Cost Water Saving Technologies in Central Zone (Madhya Pradesh & Chhattisgarh)

2010

  •         Preparing an Integrated Water Resources Management Master Plan for the Wainganga River Basin through People’s Participation – Maharashtra
  •         Dialogue to improve and strengthen the draft ground water policy of Uttar Pradesh and formulate a strategy for implementation
  •         Enhancing water use efficiency through promotion of water saving technologies and capacity building of water users in drought prone area, Ichak and Churchu blocks, District Hazaribag, Jharkhand
  •         Knowledge Dialogue on Integrated Domestic Water Management – Preparation of Compendium and Status Paper – Bundelkhand Region of India
  •         Water, Sanitation and Health in selected Villages of West Bengal
  •         Promotion of Area Water Partnership in River Sub-basin of Ramial & Indrajeet in Dhenkanal District of (Odisha)
  •         Community centered advocacy for maintaining water level in favorable condition through water conservation and better use of natural water resources at Katihar Block of Katihar District, Bihar
  •         Awareness Building on New State Water Policy of Rajasthan
  •         Consensus building on Drought Mitigation Measures and Bringing out a Compendium cum Policy Document on Climate Adaptation Strategies for Securing Agricultural Livelihoods in Uttar Pradesh

IWP was formally established on 28th November, 2001 as a registered non-profit organization with the objectives to support action for sustainable and integrated development and management of water resources at national, regional river basin/ sub-basin and local levels in India . The Governing Board of India Water Partnership has 27 members. Seven of the members are Government nominees, with reserved seats for Central and State government representatives in rotation and rest are from partners organizations.  

IWP pioneered the concept of Zonal Water Partnerships (ZWP) in 2008. India Water Partnership stakeholders agreed to establish Zonal Water Partnerships (ZWPs) so that IWRM could be made effective at the state as well as at the local and community level. This move was taken in light of India ’s huge and diverse population, and multiple state identities, conditions and priorities that meant the country should be treated in similar conceptual terms to a region. The zones are not based on rigid administrative boundaries, but configured according to hydrological units, so there is scope to address local contexts and issues that have inter-zonal implications. As a first activity, ZWPs helped to generate information relating to inter-state water sharing and best practices in conflict resolution. The six Zonal Water Partnerships (ZWPs) and more than 100 life time vibrant network partners of IWP help in achieving its mission across the country. Both IWP and ZWP work closely with the relevant water institutions, universities, CBOs/NGOs and other stakeholders at national, state and local level.  IWP with the support of ZWPs in India is addressing the water centric issues through Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs)/Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) which have constitutional authority in the chain of civil authority structure.

To help translate IWRM in to practice, IWP promoted Area Water Partnerships (AWPs). AWP is a multidisciplinary group of local stakeholders(Grass  root level community Organizations, water and supply and sanitation officials, irrigation, youth groups, environmentalists, pollution control Boards/ Authorities, Women, Media, industries, Scientist, PRI,s, Water User Groups etc.)  which provides a plate form for water related institutions and stakeholders for interaction to achieve IWRM at local level. AWPs main task is to identify the interdependence of various water related institutions and stakeholders and to support them in the sustainable management of their water resources. The AWPs also identify and discuss local level issues, resolve conflicts and dispute over water, find solutions and finally present to higher authorities water issues for sub-basins. IWP helped to form several AWPs in different states across the country.

Beside  the above, the other core priority areas of interest are;  addressing adaptation to climate change (Droughts and floods) through workshops, consultations, training programmes; encouraging use of innovative low cost water saving technologies (water and sanitation)   by the communities; sustainable natural resource management; integrated domestic water management; conflict resolution on water sharing; inter-state trans-boundary water sharing issues, gender mainstreaming, advocacy among water users associations/ water user groups/ water regulatory authorities  at district and state level for planning and managing the river basin through participatory approach,  advocacy and knowledge dialogue etc.

IWP prepared “India Water Vision-2025” during 1999 based on the projections for country’s water demand in 2025 on the initiatives of GWP and South Asia Technical Advisory Committee.  The Vision Document was prepared after a series of four regional consultations with the senior government officials from Central and State Governments, policy makers, academicians, water experts, donor agencies, UNICEF, World Bank, NGOs and industry representatives. The report is available on our website – cwp-india.org under Publications heading.

During November, 2009, IWP organized a two day Round Table Conference on “Water, Livelihood and Adaptation to Climate Change in South Asiawhich was attended by more than 60 participants comprising of climate change experts/eminent scientists and scholars from South Asian countries namely; Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Global Water Partnership Office (GWPO), Sweden.  The report is available on IWP website-http://www.cwp-india.org under heading “Events”.

IWP in association with National Institute of Disaster Management (NIDM), Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India organized a “Two Day Sensitization Programme for its Zonal Water Partners on Climate Change Induced Flood and Drought Mitigation and Management” on 21st & 22ndDecember, 2010 at ISID, New Delhi . Forty one participants including the experts on flood and drought management and zonal water partners participated in the programme.( yet to be uploaded)

Most of the IWP network partners were part of the various consultations organized by the Ministry of Water Resources for the comprehensive charter for the National Water Mission approved by the Government of India in April, 2011. 

SACIWaters, WaterAid(India), Orrisa Water Forum and Udayamma are also our network partners  or our Zonal water partners and  support each other by Knowledge sharing, providing infrastructure support or taking up advocacy for similar concerns which itself creates synergy and coordinated efforts.

Rajesh Shah, Peer Water Exchange, Bangalore

The Peer Water Exchange is a combination of process, technology, and a human network designed to India 's water and sanitation issues. It is more than a network, it is an exchange - a social development exchange - where all transactions are tracked and collaboration is enforced. PWX is a database of water and sanitation projects; one which invites all members of the public to participate in and take part to really see what is working years after the ribbon-cutting ceremony. It is a solution to solve one of the biggest crisis facing humanity: lack of water and access to sanitation. Here the problem is not a lack of solutions, but a way to scale them up and manage thousands of customized grassroots small-scale projects.

We know which water and sanitation projects succeed - small-scale projects tailored to the community and owned by them. They need small funds and it is hard to divide large funding into very small projects and manage them. In addition, these are people intensive and behavior change intensive so impossible to replicate. The problem faced by all development agencies for past 30 years is how to scale them. We have solved the scaling problem! A peer-run participatory decision-making system, PWX has proven that crowdsourcing the expertise in the field is extremely valuable and can be used within a robust network to scale up the management of thousands of diverse, customized grassroots water and sanitation projects.

PWX is an pioneering effort to enforce collaboration marshaling resources cost-effectively to make decisions efficiently and transparently. In addition, PWX is a cost-effective approach to monitor and measure the long-term impact of small projects to ensure that we are truly making a dent in the global water crisis. This platform is inclusive, transparent, and powerful and attracting many implementers from around the world. PWX is the first participatory decision-making system where people in the field get a vote, get to decide where the funding will go. It is the first system that requires as much change on behalf of the funding agencies in the 'north'  as the implementer organizations in the field. PWX reduces bureaucracy and allows for more resources and funds to reach the field.

The following links show how the platform works and some samples of its success:

The news section captures important milestones in our history, we are proud of a report Nonprofits Use “Human Network” To Reduce Arsenic Poisoning And Help Solve India Water Crisis. We have been building on the PWX foundation to improve it and are really excited about new and improved existing features that benefit of the global community.

1.      PWX AnalytiX: We have just introduced business intelligence tools for the water sector. Our initial offering is a basic set of business intelligence tools to help the management and tracking of projects and reports and also visualizing data. The PWX AnalytiX videos may be an interesting and valuable starting point (< 5 min):http://peerwater.org/analytix/help/video?introduction

2.      Custom Contextual Search (and Map): We have greatly improved our customized search engine to allow searching the different parts of the PWX process. In addition we have created the ability to search and map the results of the search. So you can search for "rope pump" or "dugwell" and map the results to see visually where all the projects and applications and discussions are. For example: search for "RC" and see all the projects that 2 Rotary Clubs in NJ have funded in Bengal .

3.      Map of Organization: we have created a map of the organization. Whether an organization is working in a single country or  spread around the world, you can see the spread of all their work: applications, projects, and offices. When you search for an organization, you can even map that.

4.      Crowdsourcing Impact Assessment:  We crowd source the long-term assessment (monitoring & evaluation) inviting the public to visit our projects and let us know what they see. So we can have information years after completion. Check out our partnership with PhotoPhilanthropy, where we are tying up with photographers from around the world:http://peerwater.org/news/24.

5.      Collaborative Decision-Making: The peer review process makes the PWX approach the true paradigm shift in the development sector. Applicants weigh in on each others proposals and field expertise is used at zero incremental cost to help funders reduce the burden of evaluating grant proposals. The peer review process has proved for five years that the water sector is interested in collaboration, sharing ideas to help improve everyone's work, and improving our collective impact against the water crisis. Here are some examples of our decision-making:

        Kenya hospital application by Rotary (approved):  http://www.peerwater.org/apps/33 (see Q&A)

        Kenya village application by Rotary (not approved):  http://www.peerwater.org/apps/34 (see Q&A)

        Philippine community (approved):  http://www.peerwater.org/apps/82 (see Q&A)

        Membership reviews (PWX grows through referrals) are also visible for the public to see.

The following two links show a membership profile and the ensuing Q&A for an organization working in Central America that recently joined: http://www.peerwater.org/organizations/113/

        The discussion and Q&A: http://www.peerwater.org/organizations/113/qandas

        User Experiences: quotes and suggestions at:

http://www.peerwater.org/home_page/quotes.

6.      Easy-to-Digest Reporting: We are moving away from the bookish final reports to showing a living history of work and progress. We have made it easy to submit status reports on projects and upload pictures or video links. Also any PWX peers or 3rd party visitors who visit any project can quickly and easily submit a report on their visit along with pictures.

7.      100 per cent Transparency: PWX is a hallmark of transparency now from the home page you can get a list of all the partners, all projects, and all applications. Our website provides easy access to all the partners, their applications and their projects. Visitors can see all the peer reviews also that helped make all the funding decisions.

8.      Forging Links: PWX reviews link people around the world, connecting them in a way that makes them learn of others' work and approach. The peer review process also gives a voice to people with field experience who are not found at conferences. The map shows the links created by each application review

9.      Global Exposure: PWX is proud to bring its members to the world stage. PWX is the only website for a few of our smaller groups. Agua Par La Salud and Ruvuma Mission (PADI) have no website and you could not find them through google a couple of months ago. Now PWX has become their website as also for many small African groups - their PWX profile and activity shows up in the first few results during internet searches.

10.   Ease of Project Management: PWX is being approached by many agencies to manage their projects. Agencies can only showcase a couple of projects on their websites. PWX showcases all their projects. Also makes it easier to share and communicate internally within an organization from remote field sites and HQ. We have just imported 600+ village projects for the Kyoto Water Prize winners - Gram Vikas and WOTR.

Now PWX looks forward to working with the water community and the government to solve India 's water and sanitation crises.

Jayati Chourey, South Asia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Water Resources Studies, Secunderabad

Thanks for sharing the information on the SaciWATERs-CapNet Network (SCaN). I take this opportunity to inform the water community about SCaN’s special features.

The SaciWATERs-CapNet Network (SCaN) is a dynamic platform for IWRM professionals in the South Asian region. Its website (www.saciwaters.org/scan) is comprehensive, providing an entire gamut of network news and members-only resources. SCaN has also recently launched an online interactive platform for networking on IWRM in South Asia .

In order to ease physical distances, it has launched SCaNSocialise, a members-only networking feature. Drawing from an already existing pool of South Asian water professionals who are classified by their areas of expertise and country, one can easily share information, discuss matters of current importance and gather professional interest to their work. With over 101 members from the water sector and growing, there are niche spaces for writing blogs, sharing photographs and initiating discussions. SCaNSocialise can be used to share as much as information as you want, while choosing with whom you can share your information with, in a multitude of ways. The site also has a chat application which will enable users to chat with online users.

For more information and to join the network do write to me at jayati@saciwaters.org

Disclaimer:  In posting messages or incorporating these messages into synthesized responses, the UN accepts no responsibility for their veracity or authenticity.  Members intending to use or transmit the information contained in these messages should be aware that they are relying on their own judgment.

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Solution Exchange is a UN initiative for development practitioners in India. For more information please visit www.solutionexchange-un.net.in. Please note that some of the links in these discussions maybe defunct. 

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