In May 2017, the Water Museum of Venice launched the Global Network of Water Museums with the support of UNESCO, and is now working, towards formal recognition of the network by UNESCO-IHP (International Hydrology Program) as integral to knowledge dissemination and education on water heritage, values and innovation.
The Living Waters Museum seeks to build an online knowledge repository that will commemorate our rich water history, inspire the youth to act on water challenges and in the long-term, facilitate social enterprise around water-based livelihoods or sacred water sites. This presentation outlined the transdisciplinary potential of the LWM platform in raising awareness on the magnitude of our water challenges and engaging youth towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 6 on water security. Working with schools, universities and civil society in collaborative partnerships is critical to the process, ensuring that the world of virtual reality intersects with physical space where daily struggles over water rights is a ‘lived’ reality.
Professor Sara Ahmed has over 25 years of applied research experience on water, livelihoods and social equity. She has been actively engaged in teaching and mentoring young development professionals In India, managing large and complex regional research portfolios on water, food security and climate change in Asia, and advising a range of development organisations and water networks globally. Sara holds a PhD in Environmental Sociology from the University of Cambridge and is currently on the board of WaterAid, India. She has published extensively on water governance and her last co-edited book is entitled, Diverting the Flow: Gender Equity and Water in South Asia (2012).