What is it? For whom?

The City Leaders Forum provides a unique opportunity to bring together invited City Leaders (i.e.: sustainability managers, urban planning directors, city managers, and elected leaders) to share their water successes and challenges, while looking through the lens of the Principles for Water Wise Cities to identify the key success factors and bottlenecks to meeting locally the national goals that have been agreed to by governments around the world.

Goal/ Outcome:

This Forum follows the Resilient Cities Leaders Forum from November 2015 at the Amsterdam International Water Week (AIWW). It will be the time to set an agenda for further action needed to develop a shared water vision in Cities to achieve sustainable urban water implementation. Once endorsed at the Forum, the Principles will be presented at the UN-Habitat III Conference in Quito, Ecuador, promoting water integrated city planning in the New Urban Agenda. The sessions will use the “IWA Principles for Water Wise Cities” which define Sustainable Urban Water as: all urban waters used and managed by “Water Wise communities” in cities connected to their basins and built in a way that is sensitive to water issues so that short-term risks are minimised, long term resources are preserved, and liveability is increased through “Water Sensitive Urban Design” and access to all to “Regenerative Water Services”. The outcome document of Forum will focus on how the Principles can guide cities in implementing the Paris agreement on climate and many of the SDGs through the water agenda.

Introduction to the Leaders Forum

On Oct 11th, the day will start with an Introduction to the IWA Principles for Water Wise Cities followed by their official launch at the Cities Pavilion powered by ARUP. The Cities Pavilion will be an area for cities to highlight their innovations and leadership towards urban resilience and to network with other cities to become inspired by similar contexts and solutions.


The structure of the sessions will include scene setting, city presentations, speed dating and round table discussions, intended to maximize the exchange between cities and other key stakeholders. The sessions will emphasize what can be learned from the SDG challenges faced by cities and how the Principles inspire a vision towards solutions. The proposed sessions will focus on: 1/ developed cities; 2/ emerging cities with rapid urbanisation; 3/ developing cities with rapid urbanisation; and finally 4/ feedback from round table and lessons learned, and how to enable the Water Wise Cities to be implemented and contribute to SDGs and COP targets.

Benefits for Cities:

  • A central networking area at the Cities Pavilion in the Exhibition Hall, where the “Principles for Water Wise Cities” will be illustrated
  • Your city logo presented at the Cities Pavilion
  • Showcase your City’s water story on a movie or slide show on the screens of the Cities Pavilion (timeslot assigned on a first come first served basis)
  • Pitch a story at the urban pavilion during one of the breaks (limited availability)
  • Become a partner of the Cities Pavilion by proposing your City Water Story to be displayed on the floorplan.

Contact Corinne Trommsdorff or Lisa Andrews if you would like your City to be invited.

We look forward to your presence on our journey to water wise cities!