Melita Grant

Melita Grant

Melita Grant, Australia

Melita Grant is a Research Principal at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney and specialises in water resources management and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in international development, with a focus on equality and inclusion. Melita has an academic background in Political Science and Environmental Management, and expertise in governance, institutional and policy analysis, applying this in Australian and international development contexts. She has a technical background in water management, demand management behaviours and technologies, and integrated water resources management (IWRM) through roles at the NSW Government and in local governments. Melita recently was the lead author of Gender and SDG6: The Critical Connection, a framing paper written for the United Nations High Level Panel on Water, commissioned by the Australian Water Partnership.

Presentation Ttitle:What does socially inclusive Integrated Water Resources Management look like?

While an awareness of the importance of social inclusion and gender equality within water management has increased in recent decades, much work remains to effectively embed socially inclusive policies and practices into the sector. Gender equality can be seen as one key dimension of a socially inclusive approach – where no group is marginalised or excluded systematically. Sustainable Development Goal 6 to “ensure access to clean water and sanitation for all” requires explicit attention to gender equality and social inclusion.

The Global Water Partnership (GWP) identified a serious need to analyse gaps in the mainstreaming of gender equality in water management. To identify, explore, and begin to resolve these gaps, In 2017 the GWP commissioned the Institute for Sustainable Futures from the University of Technology Sydney (ISF-UTS) to conduct a study to investigate gender equality and social inclusion efforts within IWRM at a range of scales (global, regional, national and local). The study also provided strategic advice on developing monitoring and evaluation indicators relevant to the gender-water-development nexus. Following a comprehensive gender analysis of water resources management issues and initiatives, and interviews with 20 global water management and gender equality leaders, the project brought influencers together in a high level meeting to deliberate and support the development of a major think piece. This presentation summarises the findings of the study, including an outline of clear and practical actions that all water sector stakeholders can take into their own organisations to champion socially inclusive IWRM – with a focus on driving gender equality.

The GWP is an intergovernmental organisation established in 1996 to support countries in their efforts to implement a more equitable and sustainable management of their water resources. The network spans 13 regions with more than 3,000 institutional partners in 158 countries.

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