Call for Papers and Proposal Form: Global Water Security Issues (GWSI)

Call for Papers and Proposal Form
2022 Theme: Making Water Decisions for Climate Change Adaptation

The ‘Global Water Security Issues (GWSI) Paper Series’ is co-published by UNESCO Headquarters and UNESCO i-WSSM on an annual basis. The selected papers will be published as part of the GWSI Paper Series.


UNESCO i-WSSM invites researchers from international organizations, government agencies, research institutions, non-profit institutions, and the private sector to submit proposals for the ‘GWSI Paper Series’ on water security. The selected papers will be published as part of the ‘GWSI Paper Series’ of UNESCO i-WSSM and UNESCO Headquarters. Authors of selected papers will be invited to present their work at an international event, such as the World Water Forum. The selected paper shall be original, high-quality work not previously published. Note that authors will be requested to sign a copyright agreement with UNESCO upon selection of the paper for the series; a copy of the agreement can be provided upon request.

Proposals are due by 31 January 2022. Successful authors will be notified by 25 February 2022 and full first draft papers will be due by 29 April 2022. Authors will be requested to respond to editorial review comments by 17 June 2022 and peer review comments by 16 September 2022.

Interested parties should complete this and submit this APPLICATION FORM

GWSI papers will need to meet the following requirements:

– Topics: Papers should align with the overall theme and address topic(s) identified in the Proposal Template (see below)
– Content: Papers should include the content identified in Section 2, Content.
– Case Study: It is strongly encouraged that papers include details of one or more practical and successful case studies.
– Environmental and socioeconomic settings: Papers may be tailored to specific environmental and socioeconomic settings or they may be broadly applicable; in all cases, linkages to policy issues and/or key policy decisions must be included.
– Languages: Proposals and papers must be submitted in English.
– Format: The final paper should be between 20 and 30 pages in length of double-spaced text, including all images and references.


‘Water Security’ has increasingly attracted international attention. Indeed, the 9th phase of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP), implemented between 2022 and 2029 and in line with the eight-year Medium-term Strategy of UNESCO (2022-2029), places special emphasis on water security.

According to the World Bank, securing water is essential to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and goes well beyond water access and sanitation. There are a variety of topics regarding water security that have not been extensively researched internationally. As such, there is an urgent need to conduct research into emerging and future global water security issues within the context of the Sustainable Development Goals and to document the research results.

The 2022 theme is Making Water Decisions for Climate Change Adaptation. Agencies and organizations recognize the need to adapt to a changing climate, but there is a high degree of uncertainty around forecasted climate events and conditions. Climate uncertainty is occurring concurrently with multiple other stressors, such as sea level rise, population levels, migration, water availability, and other critical elements of water security. This 2022 edition of the GWSI invites practitioners making decisions that have long-range implications for water security to contribute chapters on how uncertainty is being taken into consideration. The intended focus is on chapters that provide practical and applied practices, methods, and approaches, as opposed to theoretical, hypothetical, or purely academic contributions. Chapters may address a range of topics in the areas of governance, planning, infrastructure, knowledge management, and human resources, while providing insights on how to prepare for an uncertain future. Examples of potential sub-themes include priority-setting, resiliency, land use zoning for drought and flood preparation, socio-economic arrangements for capacity and innovation, and considerations for aquatic biodiversity anticipated to be negatively affected by climate change (see the Proposal Template for more on the sub-themes).


The main objective of the ‘GWSI Paper Series’ is to document emerging water security-related issues and analyses. By co-publishing with distinguished researchers from relevant organizations, the GWSI provides a starting point for discussion on a range of issues that collectively fall under the umbrella of water security. Each GWSI publication identifies current issues, broadens discourses, brings regional cases to the forefront, contributes to water-related agendas and development frameworks, and shares diverse perspectives in connection with the Sustainable Development Goals.

The specific objectives of the publication include:
– To share research and studies in order to strengthen cooperation among researchers engaged in the water sector internationally
– To encourage and enhance research on water security-related issues
– To identify solutions for improving global water security-related issues, and
– To contribute to achieving water security in the long-term.


Contributing papers should include:
– Background information for an informed but non-expert reader
– Definition of key terms
– Key questions addressed and scope of the paper
– Methodology
– Case Study synopsis
– Discussion, including the impacts and risks identified by your research
– Policy implications and, as appropriate for the paper, recommendations or next steps
– Figures, drawings and photographs suitable for publication.

Refer to the themes on the Proposal Template (HERE).


Proposals for papers must be submitted using this Proposal Template. Please email the completed Proposal Template to The scheduled dates for proposal selection and paper review are:

– By 31 January 2022, researchers interested in submitting papers should send a completed proposal template. The proposals will be reviewed by a selection committee which will judge proposals based on their quality, relevance, and substance.
– By 25 February 2022 the submitter of each proposal will be informed of the selection committee’s decision.
– By 29 April 2022, the researchers of the selected proposals should submit the first draft of their paper to the International Water Resources Association (IWRA), which will receive them on behalf of UNESCO i-WSSM; editorial comments from IWRA will be returned by 13 May 2022.
By June 17, 2022, final draft papers are due; these drafts will be peer reviewed through a process established by the International Water Resources Association; peer review comments will be provided to authors by August 5, 2022.
– By 16 September 2022, final full papers should be submitted to the International Water Resources Association.

Up to 20% of the GWSI Paper Series may consist of papers on topics identified by authors that are relevant to the theme but that have not been specifically identified in the topic choices of the Proposal Template. Proposals on topics identified in the Proposal Template will be given preference during the selection process.

For inquiries regarding this call for proposals, please contact IWRA at: or