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Security actors in the governance of scarce water resources

A truck carrying 10,000 litres of water travels to provide water to Gonka Complete Primary School during the ongoing drought in Ethiopia, April 2016. Photo: flickr / UNICEF Ethiopia

City Conference Centre, Folkets Hus, Barnhusgatan 12-14, Stockholm, Sweden

SIPRI will host an event at this year's World Water Week in Stockholm, focusing on security actors and the governance of water resources.

The event will convene a dialogue of experts to discuss local, regional and global security implications of increased water scarcity induced by climate change. While rarely the determining factor in inter- or intra-state violent conflict, water stress compounds the risks of political instability and fragility, including but not limited to local resource disputes, adverse impacts on livelihoods, increased migration and conflicts over transboundary water resources. Competition over diminishing water resources means that it will also increasingly become a strategic commodity and potential political tool.

Overall, this event will be a platform to highlight the need for resource (water) scarcity to be better incorporated into mainstream political–military policy analysis and policymaking, in order to proactively mitigate such risks. In addition, participants will be tasked with brainstorming potential ways in which security actors can play a constructive role in the governance of water resources under conditions of scarcity. The dialogue will be in a roundtable format with a SIPRI moderator. The discussion will be open for questions and interactive dialogue with the audience.


14:00  Welcome, Dan Smith, SIPRI Director

14:10  Roundtable Discussion

  • Professor Marcus D. King, George Washington University
  • Professor Ashok Swain, Uppsala University
  • Karin Olofsson, Parliamentary Forum for Small Arms and Light Weapons, SIWI Board Member

15:00  Open Discussion with Audience 

15:20  Closing Remarks, Dr Therese Sjömander Magnusson, SIWI Director 


Registration information

Please register for World Water Week online.

Event contact (SIPRI)