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4th International Conference of the Global Network of Water Museums (WAMU-NET)

The international conference of the Global Network of Water Museums WAMU-NET was held from October 26 to 28, 2022 in Marrakech - Morocco, with the participation of 3 researchers from the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability at the UPC.

This year, the international conference was focused on the culture of water in Morocco, the Arab countries and the Maghreb and aimed to highlight how societies of the past adapted to the problems of water scarcity and floods through ancestral hydrotechnologies , which represent an important cultural heritage and fundamental knowledge for climate adaptation. Therefore, the conference has focused on the importance of ancestral hydrotechnologies as a solution to climate change.

It is important to highlight that the conference developed content related to the objectives and scope of the PRIMA SureNexus project, coordinated by the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability, such as:

  • The heritage of water management

  • Ancestral hydrotechnologies for the use of groundwater with a vision of the future

  • Good practices and solutions for water resilience

  • Access to heritage, rehabilitation and sustainable ecotourism

  • Education on water, heritage and sustainable development in the Mediterranean

  • Research, education and communication on water management

Likewise, the General Assembly of the network defined the contribution to the United Nations Conference on groundwater, focusing on the issue of ancestral hydrotechnologies as a source of inspiration for innovation in the sustainable management of aquifers.

The UNESCO Chair on Sustainability at the UPC participated in the conference "Learning from the past: an overview of Mediterranean ancestral hydro-technologies", held by Professor Jordi Morató, where the scope, objectives, partners and activities of the SURE NEXUS project were presented.

The researchers Guillermo Penagos and Olga Lucia Sánchez Santander participated in the different discussion tables, where the importance of the integrated management of Water, Energy, food sovereignty and ecosystems was analyzed, that is, the quadruple NEXUS approach.

During the conference, spaces for conversation were provided with different relevant actors for the formation of the platform of actors of the SureNexus project, such as the International Hydrological Program of UNESCO, the Ministry of Water and the Office of Electricity and Potable Water of Morocco, the Institute IHE of the Netherlands, as well as the Universities of Venice, Nice, Algarve and Cadi Ayyad.

Jordi Morató was appointed by the Organization as Chairman of the World Inventory of Water Museums Working Group. After the discussion, the main challenges obtained are the following:

1.1. Develop an inventory/database on best practices and cases based on Water Heritage (including ecosystem, historical, technological, governance and policy aspects), Intangible and Material Water Heritage.

1.2. Improve methodologies to map best practices and cases based on different aspects.

1.3 Support the transfer of experiences between Museums and Associate Members and the creation of regional/international networks.

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