Water Policy and Regulation

Available and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all relies upon the collective action of interdependent stakeholders, playing their role effectively and efficiently. Transitioning to such a water wise world starts with people –people that informs and implements the right enabling environment.

The Water Policy and Regulation agenda cuts across all areas of work at IWA, connecting regulatory authorities and practitioners to inform and implement an enabling environment that makes the water wise vision possible.

We do this guided by the Lisbon Charter by facilitating peer-to-peer dialogue and learning across regulatory functions –economic, health, environment and quality of service–; and collaborative governance, across sectors and especially with the research, science and technology communities.

If you wish to contribute to and engage with this work, join us on IWA Connect.

The International Water Regulators Forum 


Regulatory authorities can have a positive and catalytic impact on delivering water services. IWA is home to the International Water Regulators Forum (IWRF) that welcomes regulatory authorities and officials with regulatory and supervisory functions in the water, sanitation and wastewater management services, supporting their increasingly important role in achieving global sustainable development. To date, the Forum has successfully gathered in Lisbon 2014 (Lisbon Charter), London 2015, Brisbane 2016 and Buenos Aires 2017–reaching to over 120 regulatory institutions from more than 90 jurisdictions in all continents, becoming a one of a kind global network of regulators that IWA is proud to host.



Human Rights to Water and Sanitation

Ensuring availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all is a progressive task that has its foundations in proper planning. Translating this goal into operational terms for regulators and suppliers requires rethinking targets for coverage, water quality, service levels, cost recovery, operation and maintenance (O&M) and emergency preparedness. Read more about our work and join us.




Regulating for Citywide Inclusive Sanitation

Various factors and frameworks over recent years have shone a spotlight on the need to manage the full sanitation chain in a sustainable manner, from toilet to waste disposal, through citywide inclusive sanitation. The “Regulating for Citywide Inclusive Sanitation” initiative aims to identify the needs, opportunities and tools for regulators’ contribution to achieving citywide inclusive sanitation as part of the path towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Read more about our work and how to engage with us.



Connecting to the international research community

The analytical perspective of the research community can give insights to practitioners in realising the root cause of the regulatory challenges, identify major institutional barriers, and set the milestone for actions. To bring in this perspective into the global dialogue through IWA’s platform and the IWRF, we closely work with our members and Specialist Groups across disciplines. Connect with our activities and Working Groups:

Latest Updates

September 8, 2020
Two publications have been released as outcomes of IWA’s project on Public Participation in the Regulation of Urban Water Services. This first report, &#8...
September 8, 2020
This second publication, ‘Tools for Public Participation in the Regulation of Urban Water Services’ outlines a tool that can be used as a simulation...
July 29, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent national lockdowns have had a major impact on the operations of water supply companies. This includes the management of wat...
May 11, 2020
The Hague, Netherlands, 23 March 2020. At the first online meeting of the Progamme Committee of the International Water Regulators Forum (IWRF) its members rati...
April 21, 2020
Amid the COVID-19 crisis we have seen added pressure on the ability of water utilities to provide water and sanitation services. Risks to treatment, if utilitie...
October 24, 2019
El XII Foro Iberoamericano de Regulación (FIAR) y la XIX Asamblea de la Asociación de Entes Reguladores de Agua y Saneamiento de las Américas (ADERASA), cele...
April 10, 2019
Photo: © Sanitation and Water for All.  Read summary in Spanish here IWA at the Sanitation and Water for All Sector Ministers’ Meeting, San José, Costa...
October 11, 2018
Download Press release here Tokyo 2018 IWA World Water Congress & Exhibition closes with a renewed focus on interdisciplinary collaboration to address glob...
September 1, 2018
How can regulatory authorities enable resilience and sustainable development? The answer is nature Regulators continue to have an important role in world advanc...
Carolina Latorre
Senior Officer