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Water CoP Retreat (Activity 5: Paper)

Water CoP Retreat (Activity 5: Paper)

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Published by adbwaterforall
Water CoP Retreat (Activity 5: Paper)
Water CoP Retreat (Activity 5: Paper)

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Published by: adbwaterforall on Feb 01, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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 Review of the Draft Water Operations Framework 2011-2020
Voices from the Water CoP Retreat
Participants discussed the draft Framework from the perspectives of ADB staff, clients, andpartners. They appreciated the opportunity to review the paper and are keen to actively engagein the further formulation of such a framework. They welcomed many of the insights articulatedin the paper, and put forward additional suggestions for further developing the framework. Thesuggestions are summarized below:1.
Providing space for recognizing achievements of clients, partners and ADB
Thepresent draft is thin on the work done by clients, partners and ADB itself over the past years.Maybe a revised version later could consider adding a section that recognizes what has beenachieved and how that can be built upon? Such section may also touch upon ADB’s work onpartnerships and/or collaboration with partners, including the work with financing partners for theWater and Financing Partnership Facility. This may help to entice clients and partners to buyinto the framework and seek expanded collaboration with ADB.
Highlighting the crisis but recognizing the need to validate data
. The intention tohighlight the water supply-demand gap revealed by the McKinsey Report is understoodconsidering the objective of the framework to call attention to the crisis that the region is facing.However, the framework may need to allow for further validation of such data noting that Indiahad asked McKinsey for re-computation.3.
Offering menu of options to clients
. One size doesn’t fit all, and it is expected that thelater version of the framework would clarify what menu of options it offers its clients to choosefrom. For that, a program with a menu of options may be called for.4.
Building on existing studies to improve implementation
. The paper makes a casefor significant investment in further country water assessment studies by ADB. It is assumedthat such work will build upon existing studies, including by other organizations, and the focuswill be more on filling the gaps. It is also assumed that where warranted, further studies will bedone with mandated partner organizations, including knowledge centers. Many participantsexpressed need for helping clients to implement existing policies and programs (the “how”question), smartly supported by benchmarking and capacity development.
Tempering the focus on higher efficiencies
The call for improving water useefficiencies is supported and it is suggested that it be complemented by equal, if not more, focuson conservation in all uses. There were suggestions to further refine the strategy for promotinghigher efficiencies in agriculture to take into account the need to distinguish efficiency at field,system and basin levels – a fundamentally important issue that may be difficult for ADB toachieve. It is also suggested that variation in country and local conditions be considered whenpromoting efficiencies.6.
Setting realistic expectations from private sector participation
. Stimulatingincreased participation of private sector is supported. However, in the light of ADB’s weakperformance to date in private sector water operations, and the dearth of examples in ruralareas in the developing world (not just Asia), participants suggested that expectations for privatesector participation be set more carefully and worded in a manner that empowers governmentsto move ahead with promoting PSP while taking the views of civil society into account.7.
Maximizing existing capacities and expanding them
. Further discussions on makingbetter use of ADB’s existing capacities are needed, as well as in agreeing which capacitiesshould be further expanded and how. The Water Committee and CoP should be encouraged totake an active part in the discussion considering that it’s them who will benefit from improvedcapacities.8.
Agreeing how ADB should convey the message about the social and economicvalue of water
. The paper’s focus on the economic approach to water use efficiency isunderstood. However, due to sensitivities attached to promoting water as an economic good, itmay be prudent to be consistent with what the
Water for All 
policy espouses, that is, “water is asocially vital economic good” and sustainable development and IWRM approaches must stressthe need for water management to balance economic, social and environmental outcomes.9.
Providing for resources to support
demand management approaches
. The shift inparadigm that the paper is trying to promote requires resources to be invested in labor intensivework for policy reforms, behavior changes, institutional reform, within the social and politicaleconomy. It is suggested that the costs associated with this type of work be included.

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