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City leaders continue dialogue at Singapore International Water Week


Authors: Henk Ovink - Special Envoy for International Water Affairs for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Barbara Swart – Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, Edyta Wisniewska – Netherlands Water Partnership.

Collaboration, co-creating, partnerships and innovation are key in overcoming water challenges

City leaders talked about resilience during the dialogue session in the Netherlands Pavilion at the Singapore International Water Week on Monday 9 July. City representatives from across the globe shared their progress on resilience building, its challenges, opportunities and further steps.

The leaders support joint actions to work on climate and water resilience to increase the livability and lovability of their cities. The main takeaways of the session are:

1. Cities must have a clear (long term) vision based on assumption of their people. But not without short term action.
2. Projects need a plan and a business case: match long term with short term actions.
3. Collaboration, collaboration, collaboration.
4. Transparency and corruption are key to address.
5. Work horizontally (instead of in silos) on cross-sectoral solutions.



Photo: Mr. Henk Ovink (with microphone) and Mr. Tomasz Chruszczow (left of Mr. Ovink) hosting the Resilient Cities Dialogue at the Singapore International Water Week

Mr. Tomasz Chruszczow, Special Envoy for Climate Change and High Level Climate Champion hosted the session together with Mr. Henk Ovink, Special Envoy for International Water Affairs for the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The dialogue session was a result and a follow-up action of the Resilient Cities Leaders Forum at the Amsterdam International Water Week in 2017.

During the session city leaders from among others Amsterdam, Tirana, Singapore, Panama City, Yangon, New York, Hong Kong, Wuhan and middle-sized cities in Europe, discussed the progress of their resilient projects and activities. The Polish Ministry of Environment shared the progress of the project “Developing adaptation plans for cities with over 100.000 inhabitants in Poland” (44 cities Project – “MPA Project”).  The Ministry is delighted to contribute to follow-up actions, especially with the COP24 Summit coming up, which takes place in Katowice, Poland. The Special Envoy for Climate Change and Special Envoy for International Water Affairs for the Kingdom of the Netherlands discussed the possible road map for climate adaptation in cities towards the COP24. In the coming time, the draft idea will be further developed.

The session was organized by the Netherlands Water Partnership and the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management of the Netherlands, in close cooperation with the Polish Ministry of Environment and the Embassy of the Netherlands in Singapore. This event was supported by the Partners for Water programme of the government of the Netherlands.

For more information about the session, the water cities theme and the upcoming activities, please contact Edyta Wisniewska, e.wisniewska@nwp.nl

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