29th – 31st January 2020


What is W12?

The City of Cape Town proudly welcomes you to the W12 Congress, an International Conference and Expo that will produce the “W12 Framework” for ongoing collaboration across sectors, reflecting the common understanding of participating cities and strengthen the citizen-driven governance of alternative sustainable water solutions.

The Congress brings together city officials, academics, business executives, water experts, and students from major cities in the world that are likely to face water scarcity challenges in the next 24 – 36 months. Cape Town was the first major city in South Africa to face these significant water scarcity challenges, when water resources were almost completely depleted and taps almost ran dry.

The W12 conference will be held 29th to 31st January, 2020 in Cape Town, South Africa, in partnership with a two-day event held 27th and 28th January, 2020 at the University of the Western Cape, and aims to be the first of a global movement featuring the major work of city governments facing water crises. 

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Why is W12 Important?

Cities like Cape Town have already felt the acute effects of water shortages and devised extraordinary measures to preserve access to water. By 2050 almost 2 billion people living in cities will suffer water shortages as demand for water increases by up to 70% (World Bank). Extremely high water stress can threaten national security. Solutions must be found and implemented now. The need to work together locally and internationally to ensure the future of our world’s water is evident.

This conference provides an opportunity for city officials, academics, citizens, and industry leaders to join keynote speakers Arnold Schwarzenegger and Carlos Cosin among other experts, exchanging ideas and sharing solutions. The objective is to share insights on challenges, best practices and brainstorm practical solutions for water and climate resilience. We will achieve this not only from a city and industry point of view but down to where it really matters; citizen-driven actions.

The W12 Congress will include inspiring presentations to incite energy and engagement in the solutions discussed in this multi-day event and a ‘W12 Framework’ for addressing water shortages.

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W12 Presenting Partner

The w12 Partners

Our Academic Partners

Media Partners