The end of 2023 is approaching and with that, I wish to summarise in a few paragraphs the main highlights of Water JPI’s work over the last 12 months. This has been a pivotal year in which strategic decisions have been made by partners and we have completed numerous activities.

The final review meeting of IC4WATER projects took place in February and that of WaterWorks2017 projects at the end of May. Moreover, the mid-term review of AquaticPollutants projects was held in June. The end of the year is going to be marked by the end of WaterWorks2017 which, co-funded by the European Commission, has supported 18 research projects and has carried out a wide variety of additional activities in the area of “closing the water cycle gap – sustainable management of water resources”.

The SD-WISHEES project, which brings a few members of the Water JPI, kick started activities. As foreseen in its work plan, SD-WISHEES will launch a Thematic Annual Programming (TAP) action in order to boost collaboration with widening countries i.e. countries with low performance in the Framework Programme. So far, three countries have confirmed their interest in the TAP (France, Moldova and Romania). Enhanced collaboration should ultimately result in the better protection of cultural heritage, both historical and natural sites, in the face of hydroclimatic extreme events.

During the second part of 2023, Water JPI activities have aimed at improving the valorisation of research results. That valorisation should enable the uptake of Water JPI results by potential end-users including water utilities, innovators, or water management authorities. To this end, the Coordination and Secretariat team launched in September a “showcase campaign”. One article is published on the Water JPI’s website on a monthly basis and disseminated through our social networks. The first articles have provided general information on our activities and, differences and complementarities with the Water4All Partnership. We will be contacting project coordinators very soon in order to offer our readers a more precise view of what has been achieved and possible next steps in each one of the themes funded by the Water JPI since its creation in 2011.

Likewise, we organised in November two showcase events as part of WaterWorks2017. One of them allowed us to travel to Rimini (Italy) and participate in the Ecomondo conference, which represents an exceptional opportunity to enhance the visibility of our initiative and the work carried out by our members. The coordinators of EviBan, Bloowater and MarAdentro made wonderful presentations on their projects and gave us some hints to improve the valorisation of our work. We will take them into consideration in future steps and we will definitely apply them in the Water4All Partnership.

Unfortunately, a few of our members withdrew the Water JPI. I wish to use this edito to warmly thank, on behalf of all our partners, our representatives from Cyprus, Israel and Norway for all their work in the Water JPI.

2024 will be marked by important events for the water research and innovation community. The Commission will start discussions on the 10th Framework Programme that will see the light in 2028. Moreover, the World Water Forum will take place in Bali (Indonesia) in May 2024. The Water JPI’s Task Force on Interactions with the Framework Programme and Alignment, in collaboration with partnering initiatives, will ensure that Water JPI’s positions are considered in order to keep water issues high in the political agenda both in Europe and abroad.

Also, in 2024 the Water JPI community will continue with the implementation of the two last co-funded projects, AquaticPollutants and BiodivRestore, and we will start organizing the next Water JPI conference. The conference will be held in South Africa in March 2025. We will keep you fully informed of the programme of the conference as soon as it becomes available.

Last but not least, I wish you all Merry Christmas. Let’s hope that next year is far less turbulent and we find more peace all over the world.

With my best wishes,

Esther Díez