The Amazon Waters Alliance, an opportunity to strengthen the governance of the Amazon Basin

The Amazon Waters Alliance, an opportunity to strengthen the governance of the Amazon Basin
July 21, 2023 Gabriela Merizalderubio

On May 25, the Assembly of Partners of the Citizen Science for the Amazon Network approved the fusion of the Network and the Amazon Waters Initiative. From this merger, the Amazon Waters Alliance was born. 

The Amazon Waters Alliance brings together nearly 30 organizations from Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, the United States, France, and Peru with the objective of maintaining the integrity and connectivity of the aquatic ecosystems of the Amazon Basin and the services they provide to the region and the world. 

The Alliance will continue to generate and share knowledge at multiple levels  through scientific research  and citizen engagement, and will build spaces for dialogue at the regional scale to support evidence-based decision making and thereby strengthen basin governance and socio-environmental well-being.

“Beginning in 2020, the partners of the Citizen Science for the Amazon Network arrived at the conclusion that  while it was good to generate and share knowledge, it was time to go a step further and use this information to support  management, public policy, and investment decisions, for the development and conservation at the international level. With the merger of these two entities, we are now called the Amazon Waters Alliance”, commented Mariana Varese, WCS representative on the AWA Interim Management Board.

The Interim Management Board of the Amazon Waters Alliance is made up of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology (Cullen Hanks), the Amazon Scientific Research Institute, SINCHI (César Bonilla), the Institute for the Common Good, IBC (Vanessa Rodríguez), the Peruvian Amazon Research Institute, IIAP (Carmen Rosa García), Sapopema (Wandiclea Lopes, who replaces Socorro Pena), the Federal University of Rondonia (Carolina Doria), and the Wildlife Conservation Society (Mariana Varese). As well, the Conduct Committee is made up of Vanessa Rodríguez (IBC), Bianca Darski (Mamirauá Institute), and Daniela Rosero (San Francisco de Quito University).

The Alliance has its origins in 2016. After the celebration of the International Conference Amazon Waters and the signing of a Declaration, the Amazon Waters Initiative was born. In 2017 the Citizen Science for the Amazon Project was formed under a conceptual framework of Amazon Waters as a regional space focused on a better understanding and conservation of the connectivity of the Amazon Basin with approaches of citizen participation and open science. The project was consolidated in 2019 with the formalization of the Citizen Science for the Amazon Network, which brought together 30 organizations and 10 individuals. May 2023 marked the merger of both entities and opened a new chapter in the history of the conservation of Amazonian aquatic ecosystems, under an Alliance and the same governance agreement. This has been possible thanks to the support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation since 2016 and, as of 2021, the support of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).


For more information

Katy Puga Cadena

Senior Communications Specialist Together for Conservation Project

Wildlife Conservation Society