Promoting water cooperation is imperative to sustainably manage water and improve the governance of multiple water uses and users in Lower Mekong Region further complicated by uncertain future climactic conditions. Model tools need to be tailored with the use of digital technologies to increase collective action over water from decision makers at one end to the community at the other
The SERVIR-Mekong project, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and in partnership with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) develops geospatial tools to support to support sustainable management of water resources in the Lower Mekong Region (LMR).
In the SERVIR-Mekong project SEI and ADPC is developing the Supporting WAter Resources Management (SWARM) platform consisting of catchment case studies across (LMR) to support decision makers in ensuring sustainability is built into future water resource developments. At the same time non-technical users can utilize the platform to under the impact of various basin development decisions on water availability, allocation and use in different future scenarios.
AN INNOVATIVE WEB-BASED PLATFORM COMBINES HYDROLOGICAL MODELLING WITH STAKEHOLDER INPUTS FOR DEVELOPING A PART TOOL, PART GAME FOR SUPPORTING SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT (SWARM) OF RIVER BASINS IN LOWER MEKONG REGION.
At the heart of SWARM lies SEI’s Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) software, which is used worldwide for integrated water resources planning and management. Users access a simplified interface that serves as a gateway for hosting a 3D map of the catchment that includes a set of future basin options to choose.
The options are pre-determined with country stakeholders and embedded into the model. SERVIR-Mekong works with the stakeholders to develop the WEAP model for catchments considered to be hotspots.
The SERVIR service planning approach ensures that stakeholders play a major role in tool development and eventual ownership, which in turn promotes long term stability and progress. SERVIR-Mekong also organizes a series of capacity building training programmer to ensure tool sustainability.
To secure widespread usability, the tool needs to be easily accessible, utilize simple terminology while maintaining the technical integrity of the water resources model to which it is applied. Such a tool can provide decision makers deeper insights into alternative development pathways for catchments that consider future climactic conditions.
To sustainably manage water and improve the governance of multiple water uses and users in Lower Mekong Region requires heightened efforts to build tools to support decision makers in ensuring sustainability is built into future water resource developments
Highlights of SWARM: