A new World Bank-FAO joint discussion paper finds that institutional failures to address water-related challenges can act as risk multipliers, compounding existing situations of fragility. But improving water management can contribute to building resilience in the face of protracted crises.
This paper is part of an ongoing collaboration between the World Bank and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization to raise awareness about the importance of water management in fragile systems and to propose strategic responses. It is important to better understand these dynamics to ensure that water does not add to fragility, but rather promotes stability, and contributes to resilience in the region. This paper calls for redoubling efforts towards sustainable and efficient management of water resources, reliable and affordable delivery of water services to all and protection from water-related catastrophes.
- The Middle East and North Africa water challenges are intensifying.
- The scale of the challenge is unprecedented.
- Failure to find solutions to water challenges aggravates fragility.
- Fragility makes it harder to address water issues.
- The compounding nature of water and fragility gives rise to a vicious cycle.
- Don’t blame the drought.
- Addressing water and fragility challenges requires a move from a focus primarily on immediate, reactive responses to a balanced long-term approach.
- Use decentralized, participatory approaches.
- Invest in innovative policies and practices.
- Working together within countries and across boundaries is essential.
- Water management is conducive to stability and peacebuilding.
- Addressing short-term livelihood and food security needs is essential in the short-term.
- Sustainable water management is necessary for the long-term.
28 August 2018
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Bank Group