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Tag: Knowledge Management


Building Strategic Knowledge Systems for Efficient Water and Sanitation in Africa

Bali, Indonesia – May 22, 2024

AMCOW and DHI organised a side event at the 10th World Water Forum. It was a very informative session on “Building Strategic Knowledge Systems for Efficient Water and Sanitation in Africa” from 8:30 to 10:00 AM in Kintamani 5.

The session featured vital partners – South Africa’s Department of Water and Sanitation and the Ministry of Water and Sanitation, Senegal. It made a case for the essential role of knowledge management in enhancing water and sanitation services across Africa. Also, the session launched the second edition of Africa’s Voice on Water (AVOW) magazine. Overall, it was a huge step in promoting efforts for a water-wise Africa.

The Director of Knowledge Management at South Africa’s Ministry of Water and Sanitation, Ms Moshidisi Mokhele, presenting the Ministry’s Knowledge Management Strategy

The AMCOW and DHI collaboration raises awareness about the benefits of establishing requisite knowledge systems – and showcasing South Africa’s Knowledge Management (KM) strategy for the water and sanitation sector. Senegal showcased Pôle Eau Dakar (PED), a digital solution for providing and improving access to water-related knowledge, guiding water-related investments and supporting informed cooperation and governance processes. Code Kraft, AMCOW’s software-building partner, took participants on a tour of AMCOW’s upgraded Knowledge Hub of Hubs. The blend of exercises gave insight into the long-term benefits of having a central continental repository for enhancing water resources management and delivering sustainable sanitation in Africa.

The session highlighted challenges such as the lack of emphasis on knowledge management – as KM is often overlooked in favour of data and information management, leading to inadequate resources dedicated to KM initiatives. The session further highlighted other challenges, such as the transition from data to knowledge – the difficulty of moving beyond data management to actual knowledge creation and sharing. Also discussed was the issue of evidence-based policy development – strategies and policies are often not evidence-based due to insufficient insights into real situations.

Senegalese Knowledge Officer, Mary, presenting Pole Eau Dakar (PED)

The session further proffered innovative solutions, such as:

  • Developing Knowledge Championship: South Africa, like the AMCOW Secretariat, has deployed efforts to drive knowledge building and dissemination and enhance sector data and reporting by developing national-level knowledge focal points.
  • Sector Non-technical Database: AMCOW Secretariat unveiled an initiative to build a non-technical database of service providers across the continent – accessible on the knowledge hub of hubs – to accelerate private sector involvement in the sector and networking.
  • Senegal’s Pole Eau Dakar (PED): The Republic of Senegal is building a web-based open-access portal to facilitate access to knowledge to guide water and sanitation investments and support governance processes.
Participants join to launch the second edition of Africa’s Voice on Water (AVOW) magazine.

Participants were actively engaged throughout the session. A creative video of a football masterclass illustrated the difference between data and knowledge and captivated the audience. Attendees sought clarity on how rural stakeholders without internet access could be engaged. In response, consideration was given to establishing community knowledge centres to facilitate knowledge exchange in local areas. Senegal expressed how it applies quality control protocols in validating information and knowledge resources uploaded to online platforms.

DHI, South Africa, Senegal, and other partners will reconvene at World Water Week in August 2024 to consolidate their preparation for a robust KM programme.