Workshop: “Efficiency-Orientated Water Management-From Panaceas To Actual Solutions” Venice 12-13 October 2017

Coupled with human-induced climate change, increasing population and changing distributions of wealth and consumption boost competition for water and constrains supply for agriculture –the largest user and that concentrating the marginal uses of the resource (IPCC, 2014). In this scenario providing safe, secure and profitable food production while restoring/ensuring the good ecological status of water bodies necessitates higher agricultural productivity. Efficiency-oriented water management, through new technologies and/or water reallocation to more productive uses, creates welfare enhancing opportunities that can be used to address these challenges, and has become a critical target in sustainable development –substantiated in SDG 6.4 (UN, 2015). However, much evidence shows that efficiency centric approaches often lead to water overuse in agriculture, the depletion and pollution of water bodies and degraded riverine and related ecosystems. Sensible and conscientious governance, supported by holistic water resources research (including economic analysis), are necessary to make these opportunities work for individual farmers and society alike (OECD, 2015).

This workshop will examine how economic analysis and instruments can help realise the full potential of efficiency centric catalysts, including but not limited to water markets and subsidies for irrigation modernisation. The workshop will leverage on the expertise of leading water researchers from Australia, the US and Europe to identify those factors enabling and preventing successful performance and explore transferability. Discussions are expected to lead to a position paper on the issue. This workshop aspires to be the first in a series of events that aim to understand the welfare trade-offs that occur between users from re-balancing their share of available resources.


IPCC, 2014. IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) (No. WGII). Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Geneva (Switzerland).

OECD, 2015. Water Resources Allocation: Sharing risks and opportunities, OECD Studies on Water. OECD Publishing.

UN, 2015. Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Report), Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform. United Nations.

Held from 12-13 October 2017 at the CMCC Conference Room, in San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice (Italy), this workshop will bring together relevant academics and high level representatives from leading international organisations  including the World Bank (WB), International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).

Whilst attendance is restricted to invited speakers and auditors, a live and interactive broadcast (Q&A) will be available for some of the sessions.

This workshop is sponsored by the Euro-Mediterranean Centre on Climate Change (CMCC).

Further information