chindwin field trip img 3205
Chindwin field trip

The Ayeyarwady River Basin is Myanmar’s most important river basin. The changes and pressures on the basin’s resources could result in increased environmental degradation whose impacts will be felt by people and on their livelihoods, and result in the further marginalization of particular groups.

Identifying and understanding the key interactions among multiple water-related activities in the basin is critical to helping focus integrated water resources planning and management efforts as well as public scrutiny where these conflicts, tradeoffs and synergies are greatest.

The Government of Myanmar already acknowledges this challenge. The Upper House of Parliament of Myanmar, for instance, agreed to the formation of the Ayeyarwady River Commission (ARC) in February 2013. The National Water Resources Committee (NWRC) was formed by the Presidential Decree in July 2013. A new Ayeyarwady River Basin Development Master Plan will be developed. These initiatives underline the urgent need for an informed multi-stakeholder process to support the exploration of alternative Ayeyarwady Futures and strategic decision-making in the basin.

“Ayeyarwady Futures”

Funded by the Blue Moon Fund (BMF), the “Ayeyarwady Futures” (AF) program was initiated in 2013 to support Myanmar to move towards sustainable development through evidence-based participatory planning processes.

The program is a collaborative effort by the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) working together with the Directorate of Water Resources and Improvement of River Systems (DWIR), Myanmar Environment Institute (MEI) and other organizations from Myanmar, and Mekong regional experts from Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok (Thailand), Sustainable Mekong Research Network (SUMERNET), Mekong Program on Water, Environment and Resilience (M-POWER), and other organizations.

The one-year experiences of the AF program (Nov 2013-Dec 2014) underscored the need for scaling up pilot activities into a full, multi-year, program that institutionalizes the various emerging relationships into a formal partnership led by Myanmar-based organizations.

Looking to the future: The Ayeyarwady Futures Partnership (AFP)

Building on the AF program, the Ayeyarwady Futures Partnership (AFP) aims to strengthen the roles of key existing organizations with potentially important roles in linking science and governance in the water sector and fill gaps among them.

The AFP will thus be designed to work as a boundary organization working between policy and science in close consultations with, and guided by the leadership of, Myanmar stakeholders in the context of existing institutions and mechanisms in the country.

AFP has four components to be implemented in four years (2015-2018):

  • Establishment of the Ayeyarwady Futures Partnership
  • Scientific and governance capacity building small grants and trainings
  • Strategic assessment, policy review and multi-stakeholder dialogue
  • Project coordination, communications and management

Funder: Blue Moon Fund (BMF) and Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI).

For more information, use link below to download the pdf file.
Ayeyarwady Futures Partnership (PDF)

About the project. Video: Sumernet / YouTube .