Top Experts Convene in Stockholm

At a time when billions of people live without sustainable access to safe drinking water or suffer ill health due to poor sanitation, when worsening food crisis battles bioenergy for land and water resources, and when climate change shakes the overall water balance, the 2008 World Water Week in Stockholm will gather 2,500 experts from Aug. 17-23 to chart the path to a clean and healthy world.

The conference, themed “Progress and Prospects on Water: For a Clean and Healthy World with Special Focus on Sanitation,” takes place at the Stockholm International Fairs and Conference Center. It will address sanitation and hygiene, climate, water management, ecosystems and biodiversity, and business and finance issues in more than 100 sessions taking place throughout the week.

Leading professionals from business, government, water management, science, inter-governmental organisations, NGOs, training institutes, and United Nations agencies will participate. More than 200 organizations are involved as co-convenors of the event together with the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI).

On Aug. 18, speakers include H.E Marc Ravalomanana, president of Madagascar; H.R.H Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands; Hon. Gunilla Carlsson, minister for International Development Cooperation, Sweden; Sten Nordin, Mayor of Stockholm; Professor John Anthony Allan, King’s College London; José Lopez, executive vice president, Nestlé; Letitia A. Obeng, Chair, Global Water Partnership; Kamal Kar, Development Consultant, India; and Anders Berntell, SIWI executive director.

A high level panel of distinguished experts will discuss sanitation, the most critical yet under-prioritised human health and development investment in the world. The panel will elaborate on how to better integrate sanitation and hygiene into the greater development agenda and ensure that all Millennium Development Goals be better met.

The World Water Week in Stockholm will also be the venue to celebrate those whose outstanding efforts are already improving human health and the water environment. The Stockholm Water Prize, Stockholm Junior Water Prize, Stockholm Industry Water Award, Swedish Baltic Sea Water Award and WASH Media Awards will all be presented.

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