Euro-Mediterranean Information System on The Know-how in The Water Sector (EMWIS/SEMIDE)

Countries: Egypt | Jordan | Tunisia
Level: International
Region: MENA Region
Tags: Awareness raising | Capacity building & knowledge transfer
Target audience: Agricultural authorities | Citizens | Environmental authorities | Farmers | Industry/business | Local government/municipalities | National government | NGOs and CSOs | Regional government | Scientists | Students/university | Water authorities | Water companies

EMWIS was an initiative of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership. It provided a strategic tool for exchanging information and knowledge in the water sector between and within the Euro Mediterranean partnership countries. All the countries involved in the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) were involved, namely:

  • The 27 EU member states of the EU; and
  • The 16 Mediterranean Partner Countries (Albania, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Mauritania, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Palestinian Authority, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey).

EMWIS sought to facilitate access to existing information on know-how in the water sector. It promoted the sharing of useful information from different institutions, and stimulated the development of cooperation programmes at the regional and national levels.

EMWIS built a portal ( where initiatives and projects related to water sectors are available as selected by resource, documentation and topic.

The EMWIS portal provides validated water information in a decentralised way. The project supported and encouraged partners in the Mediterranean area to establish their own water information systems. The information was not stored on a common database but remains at the level of the providers. Each information source guarantees the quality, updating and reliability of the information. This approach is now being followed in Latin America with SIAGUA, and in Africa with AWIS.

EMWIS has a central Technical Unit and a National Focal Point in each country. The central Technical Unit is based in France and is a permanent structure. The National Focal Points are small teams within a public or semi-governmental organisation in charge of the collection and dissemination of information related to the water sector. Together with the National Focal Points, the Technical Unit prepares implementation strategies and annual action plans, and it supports the National Focal Points in their implementation.

Results obtained

    • Developed information sharing.
    • High-level political commitment.
    • Strengthened the spirit of partnership.
    • Provision of a framework website where easy to access information relates to water issues.
Topics are searchable by project:
  • Institutions- types of institution and people involved.
  • Documentation - existing centres and their organisation; the means and technologies used for processing, accessing, consultation and dissemination, standardisation and quality certification.
  • Training - existing organisations, programmes, location, trainers, methods, training materials, quality certification.
  • Research and development - existing organisations, programmes, people involved, means and technologies, publications, partnerships, funding sources.
  • Data administration - existing organisations and databases, methods used for data gathering and checking, publications.

Success factors

  • Many country and experts joined the information sharing platform.
  • Access to EMWIS is open to everyone interested in water management issues.
  • Broad internet access makes the data easily available.
  • EMWIS reflects a real need and strong demand of all the partners involved in the project.

Indicators used

  • Number of website visitors.
  • Number of projects available on the website.
  • Number of countries that joined the EMWIS network.

The project had no specifically required pre-conditions, and could be implemented in any country or region with good computer and internet access. Project implementation requires website development and thematic structure (e.g. regarding the kind of data, information to be made available and shared). The data and information should be uploaded and made freely available to the public.

Total costs

  • EUR 3.33 million