Implementing the OECD Principles on Water Governance
Implementing the OECD Principles on Water Governance
OECD Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities
March 2018

Water and its improved governance are critical for economic growth, social inclusiveness and environmental sustainability. Three years after the adoption of the OECD Water Governance Principles, this report takes stock of their use and dissemination. It provides a water governance indicator framework and a set of evolving practices for bench-learning, building on lessons learned from different countries and contexts.  

Based on an extensive bottom up and multi-stakeholder process within the OECD Water Governance Initiative (WGI), these tools are conceived of as voluntary methodologies to be carried out at country, region, basin and/or city levels to improve water policies. The indicator framework is composed of a traffic light system based on 36 input and process indicators and a checklist with questions on a number of more specific governance conditions. The framework concludes with an action plan to help prioritise steps towards better design and implementation of water policies.

Implementing the OECD Principles on Water Governance
Indicator Framework and Evolving Practices
Key Issues
In 2050, 240 million people are expected to remain without access to clean water, and 1.4 billion without access to basic sanitation.
OECD projections show that 40% of the world’s population currently lives in water-stressed river basins, and that water demand will rise by 55% by 2050.
Over-abstraction and contamination of aquifers worldwide will pose significant challenges to food security, the health of ecosystems and safe drinking water supply, and increase the risk of subsidence.