Humanity is facing serious challenges such as climate change, environmental degradation and pollution that have proven to be too complex to be effectively confronted by the traditional approaches of isolated responses. The source-to-sea approach to management presents an alternative to these fragmented actions.

By bringing together upstream/downstream actors from different sectors, land, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems can be managed holistically, thereby realizing the greatest benefits for the system as a whole. A resilient future depends on all levels of government and decision makers, in partnership with the private sector and civil society, pulling together to drive meaningful change, uniting policy and action for coordinated management.

A diverse panel of high-level actors will make an urgent call for adopting the source-to-sea approach to reduce fragmentation and foster collaboration across all levels of governance and between sectors. In a world facing climate change, recurrent crises and pandemics, this session will bring together thought leaders, policymakers and practitioners representing various sectors from the freshwater and ocean communities to share their vision, reinforced by concrete experiences, of how we can act hand in hand to successfully tackle these challenges and build resilience.

  • Stockholm Environment Institute
  • Action Platform for Source-to-Sea Management
  • French Water Partnership
  • Stockholm International Water Institute
  • Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management
  • UNDP-SIWI Water Governance Facility

Desired impact

  • Participants will leave the session understanding that our ability to achieve the SDGs is critically dependent on harmonizing social, economic and environmental priorities within the system– from land to freshwater, coastal and marine environments.
  • Understanding that sustaining green and blue economic growth requires governance and management processes that balance and protect development priorities from their source all the way to the sea will deepen interest in the source-to-sea approach to management.
  • By attracting actors who may not have been previously exposed to source-to-sea management, commitment to addressing the linkages from source to sea in management approaches that strengthen coordination between sectors will grow. This commitment can be harnessed for concerted action at global, regional, national and subnational levels.


The session is open to all registered participants of World Water Week 2021. Register below to attend.

Register for World Water Week 2021