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History of JSC

APWF and the Knowledge Hubs network

The 4th World Water Forum held in Mexico in March 2006 proved to be a turning point to address water-related issues and challenges in the Asia-Pacific region, leading to the creation of a new network in September 2006: the Asia-Pacific Water Forum (APWF). APWF is an independent, not-for-profit, non-partisan, non-political network that intends to improve water resource management in order to support a sustainable socioeconomic development of the region, by:

  • capitalizing best practices and various experiences,
  • developing knowledge sharing, cooperation and capacity to produce results at the local level,
  • promoting financing,
  • making water and sanitation a higher priority on the politic agenda.
For more information about APWF, please visit: www.apwf-knowledgehubs.net


In order to convert these objectives into actions, knowledge networks that connect people to feasible solutions and help them to adapt these solutions to their local conditions, were needed. As a concrete initiative, the 1st Asia-Pacific Water Summit in December 2007 in Beppu (Japan) marked the start of the Knowledge Hubs network concept, with the recognition of several Hubs to address some of the 21 priority water topics identified during this summit.

To gather the best expertise in each specific water issue, APWF appoints and selects the most expert organization in each sector, committed to improve water security by promoting the diffusion and exchange of knowledge throughout the region. At the Singapore International Water Week in June 2008, several Knowledge Hubs were officially established and, to address sanitation issues in the Asia-Pacific, Japan was offered to host the Knowledge Hub for sanitation. This was a logical choice as Japan gathers a comprehensive know-how and expertise, and is one of the leading nations in this sector.

Creation of JSC
As sanitation comprises both on-site and off-site systems, which are well used and managed in Japan, it usually relates to different ministries. In Japan, off-site sanitation is associated to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), and on-site sanitation to the Ministry of the environment (MOE). As a consequence, it was necessary to create a new organization – JSC – to disseminate comprehensive knowledge and provide effective solutions to tackle all kind of sanitation issues in the region. In June 2009, at the APWF meeting held during the Singapore International Water Week, JSC business plan was approved and JSC was officially recognized as the Knowledge Hub for sanitation in the Asia-Pacific region. Few months later, on 16 October 2009, JSC’s 1st Steering Committee meeting marked the official start of its activities.

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