“Innovate 4 Water”: A multi-stakeholder approach to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship in wat

The “Innovate 4 Water” Lusaka marketplace forum will be held on 19-20 of June 2019 to create opportunities for cross sectorial collaboration in the Water and Sanitation sector in Zambia. The dynamic and action-focused forum will bring together entrepreneurs operating around the water nexus, investors with an interest in impact, water utilities, government bodies, NGOs, UN Agencies, incubators and all key stakeholders that play a key role in the sector.

“Innovate 4 Water” intends to empower all stakeholders and partners to drive progress towards SDG targets. It is an example of one the Sanitation and Water for All Partnership’s Guiding Principles in action – Multi-Stakeholder Efforts. The programme will showcase the priorities of the Zambian government in terms of the planning processes, as well as the solutions proposed by stakeholders from external support agencies (such as GIZ, DFID, the World Bank, etc.), Civil Society, and Private Sector entrepreneurs and investors. By doing so, the marketplace forum in Zambia aims at fostering new working relationships between the private sector and other constituencies in the SWA. Specifically, the forum encourages SWA Collaborative Behaviours around sustainable water and sanitation sector financing strategies.

“Innovate 4 Water” has been planned with local stakeholders. The objective is to bring innovative solutions to the sector in Zambia, by strengthening the local ecosystem around the water nexus, entrepreneurship and finance. The theme of the forum is “Unlocking capital to support the growth of small and medium scale WASH entrepreneurs in Zambia”.

Zambia's recognition of the importance of the water and sanitation sector in its economic development and in the reduction of poverty is evidenced by the central role that water and sanitation is given in the Country's medium-term development plan, the Seventh National Development Plan (SNDP) (2017 - 2021) and the long-term plan, the National Vision 2030. Water supply and Sanitation is one of the seven (7) sectors targeted for "priority expenditure" in the SNDP.

In this context, in order to contributing to closing the visibility gap between entrepreneurs, investors and enablers in the “Water Nexus”, the marketplace: “Innovate 4 Water” Lusaka 2019 will offer an opportunity for key stakeholders in the sector to present their activities and develop collaboration with a curated set of stakeholders in their ecosystem locally.

The fundamental objective of the “Innovate 4 Water” forums is to aid in closing the SDG6 gap by focusing on scaling-up the impact of smart, mature, market-based enterprises/ solutions providers, and by providing those enterprises with opportunities to network not only with impact investors but also with a range of organisations such as water utilities, government agencies, and development banks. The forums are designed to provoke major systemic change and to consolidate investment ecosystems in the shortest possible time.

This marketplace forum is organized by Waterpreneurs non-profit association (Switzerland), in close collaboration with member representatives from the different SWA constituencies, as well as organisations from different sectors: 4IP Group, GIZ, the Global Water Partnership and African Investments.

Please contact innovate4water@waterpreneurs.net for more information.

Water Nexus includes: Water, Sanitation, Hygiene, Agriculture, Water for Energy, Water for Health etc.

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