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GWP Highlights the Economic Value of a More Water Secure World

GWP Global logotype30 August 2013: The Global Water Partnership (GWP) has released a policy brief that examines the role of economic analysis in planning for a more water secure world. The brief, titled 'The Economic Value of Moving Toward a More Water Secure World,' highlights elements that should be considered in any such economic analysis.

The brief includes sections outlining basic economic concepts, describing state and household perspectives, and discussing policy relevance. The key messages of the brief include that: economic analysis should include the costs and benefits of both infrastructure interventions and changes in water allocation to various users; the value of a unit of water varies widely across different types of water uses; States and households value water security improvements differently; and generic, global estimates of the economic value of increased water security are not useful for guiding investment decisions at country or regional levels.

The brief concludes that in order to produce policy-relevant economic analyses of water security: decision makers must adapt to the dynamic nature of the value of increased water security along development paths; authorities must do the analytical work to understand complex hydrological systems and determine the costs and benefits of various policy interventions; and efforts should be made to capture complex relations system values rather than user values.

The UN Development Programme (UNDP), the World Bank and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) founded the GWP in 1996 to promote IWRM. [GWP Press Release] [Publication: The Economic Value of Moving Toward a More Water Secure World]