International Waters learning Exchange & Resource Network

10th International Waters Conference 2024

23-26 September 2024, Uruguay
The 10th GEF Biennial International Waters Conference (IWC10) will be held on 23-26 September 2024 in Punta del Este, Uruguay. Pre-conference workshops will take place on 21-22 September 2024 in Montevideo.

Transformative actions and impacts for the water and ocean SDGs: The GEF IW response to the global challenge

What is the International Waters Conference?

The Global Environment Facility Biennial International Waters Conference (IWC) is the key learning and exchange event for projects funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) in the focal area of International Waters. The GEF’s International Waters (IW) focal area has a unique mandate to support transboundary cooperation shared marine and freshwater ecosystems. It is the world’s largest funding mechanism for multi-country collaboration on freshwater and the ocean. To date, GEF has funded more than 480 International Waters projects and has invested some US$2.8 billion in grants and leveraged approximately US$8.7 billion in co-financing in more than 170 different countries globally.

The GEF International Waters Learning Exchange and Resource Network (IW:LEARN) is responsible for organizing the International Waters Conference (IWC) jointly with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (UNESCO-IOC), and other partners on behalf of the GEF International Waters (IW) project portfolio. 

IWC brings together more than 300 participants, including GEF IW project managers, institutional stakeholders from beneficiary countries, non-governmental and civil society organizations, transboundary and regional management institutions, UN agencies, Development Banks and Intergovernmental Organisations, and the private sector. Collectively they represent approximately 100 active GEF IW projects, from 80 countries and various GEF Agencies which aim to facilitate cross-sectoral and portfolio-wide learning & experience sharing. It is an interactive training and experience-sharing event, where we discuss challenges, highlight solutions and showcase good practices.  Furthermore, this conference summarizes the impact achieved and generates ideas for new projects.

10th International Waters Conference

The 2024 IWC resumes after 6 years, in its 10th edition, hosted by the Government of Uruguay, in Punta del Este, under the theme: "Transformative actions and impacts for the water and ocean SDGs: The GEF IW response to the global challenge", to reunite the IW portfolio and celebrate 30 years of the GEF IW focal area.  

IWC10 takes place over 4 days (23-25 September 2024, Punta del Este), with 4 preceding workshops (pre-conference workshops, 21-22 September 2024, Montevideo). IWC10 will feature an innovation marketplace (exhibit area), extensive opportunities for focused learning on issues concerning project implementation and portfolio issues, interactive training for IW project managers and country representatives, as well as interaction with the GEF Secretariat, GEF agencies and several partner institutions working on International Waters projects. The Conference will engage participants in a variety of session formats, including plenary sessions and roundtable discussions, workshops and interactive sessions. It will also feature an innovation marketplace, where projects, partners and sponsors can display their results, unique approaches, and catalytic outcomes, with emphasis on how these may be leveraged and replicated. Furthermore, it will offer the opportunity to visit technical sites of special interest to the IW portfolio, as well as networking and social opportunities, through the evening events and the Gala dinner.  

Important Dates 

Expressions of interest - Launch

30 March 2024

Expressions of interest - Closure

20 April 2024

Registration - Opening 

 3 May 2024

Registration - Closure

 31 July 2024 

Pre-Conference Workshops (Montevideo)

21-22 September 2024 

10th GEF International Waters Conference (IWC10, Punta del Este)   

23-26 September 2024

Technical Site Visits 

24 September 2024

Gala Event

25 September 2024

As more information on IWC10 become available, updates will be made to this page. Please visit regularly to stay informed.  

Should you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact the IWC10 Organizing Team

Our online presence in one place:  https://linktr.ee/iwlearn