Water provides sustenance; it is an economic good, a factor of production and a habitat. Water has often competing demands placed on it. Integrated water resource management is the guiding principle of our approaches. We are aiming at increasing commonly economic efficiency, social equity and ecological sustainability.

One of the most pressing development challenges is to balance competing interests and especially to provide poor populations in developing countries with regulated access to sufficient safe water supplies. Hygiene and sanitation are also crucial, not only in improving health but also in ensuring people can live in dignity. If sufficient water is to be available for food production in the long run, water must be distributed equitably and changes must be made to adapt to climate change. This has to happen not only at national level, but also across national borders.

On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) GIZ advises developing countries on how to manage their water resources fairly, efficiently and sustainably. With the help of our partners, we aim to reduce extreme poverty and develop structures that facilitate and encourage sustainable development.

GIZ supports their partner in:

  • Sustainable water supply
  • Sustainable sanitation/ecosan
  • Sector Reform
  • Regulation in the water sector
  • Transboundary water management
  • Management of water sheds
  • Water and agriculture

Examples of our work


Water policy

In 2010 the United Nations explicitly recognised the human right to water. For this right to become a reality, there is a need not only for extensive investment in infrastructure, but also for long-term reform of the water sector in many countries. Sector reforms create the necessary political, institutional and legal conditions for sustainable access to clean water and sanitation.

Read more

International processes

GIZ advises and supports BMZ on disseminating international water policy strategies globally and initiating change.

International processes

Water supply and sanitation

GIZ’s projects carried out on behalf of the German Government help to make the human right to water and basic sanitation a reality. GIZ is currently advising 410 water and sewage utilities in 16 countries on ways to improve their services; these projects are benefiting some 105 million people.

Water supply and sanitation

Water resource management

Our interventions contribute to increased water security, which we define as the availability of sufficient good-quality water for basic human needs, for ecosystems and for economic use. Our activities enable partner countries to develop the water infrastructure and services needed to ensure an adequate water supply for humans, the environment and the economy.

Water resource management

Holistic thinking and action – water, energy, agriculture, climate, biodiversity

To ensure that the growing world population is adequately provided with water, energy and food, the development and management of water, energy, agriculture, climate and biodiversity must be conceived, planned and organised holistically. GIZ contributes to this with a number of comprehensive approaches to water-related issues.

Holistic thinking and action


Michael Rosenauer
Phone: +49 6196 79-1331
Fax: +49 6196 79-801331

Advisory and service portfolio

Here you will find an overview of the technical and methodological services we offer.


Publication database

The publications database comprises more than 38,000 documents, which can be downloaded as PDF files or ordered as print versions if available.