UNGC CEO Water Mandate / Water Witness International / WaterAid / World Business Council for Sustainable Development

Chain-reaction: making corporate supply-chains work for WASH and the SDGs

Sunday 27 August | 16.00-17.30 | Room: NL Pillar Hall
A tea picker at Gulni Tea Estate in Sylhet District, Bangladesh. WaterAid / Abir Abdullah

Progressive action on WASH, water use efficiency , re-use and proper waste management in corporate supply chains will make a vital contribution to achieving the SDGs.  The ILO estimates that one in five people globally are employed in corporate supply chains, with up to 90% of these working in developing country SMEs and dispersed farm production systems. Inadequate WASH provision and in particular, poor faecal waste management at this scale poses serious environmental, social, and economic risks.

Initiatives to drive corporate action on WASH have so far focused on interventions at factory level, and in communities close to production sites.  Action within supply chains has been limited, despite the potential for significant positive impact.  Our session explores this potential, and new ways of stimulating far reaching action on sanitation and water which will build on existing stewardship practice.  The results of new case study research, analysis of how WASH is handled in voluntary standards and an emerging strategy on innovative supply chain interventions will provide the basis for a working session and in-depth discussion.


Chain-reaction: making corporate supply chains work for WASH and the SDGs

16:00 Welcome and Introduction
Cecilia Chatterjee-Martinsen, WaterAid Sweden

16:05 Key findings from report - Corporate engagement on water supply, sanitation and hygiene: Driving progress on SDG 6 through supply-chains and voluntary standards

  • Mai-Lan Ha, CEO Water Mandate
  • Nick Hepworth, Water Witness International

16:20 Highlights from the field - presentations illustrating progress on the 'scale-up' of corporate WASH action

  • Pendo Hyera, Water Witness International
  • Zhenzhen Xu, Alliance for Water Stewardship
  • Ruth Romer, WaterAid & Lilian Wang, PwC UK

16:35 Facilitated group debates - Opportunity to discuss the key findings from the report and identify how partners and stakeholders can contribute to a more impactful "chain-reaction" promoting WASH in supply chains

  • Sara Traubel, WBCSD

17:10 Facilitated plenary feedback

  • Sara Traubel, WBCSD

17:25 Conclusions, next steps, ways to get involved and thank you

  • Cecilia Chatterjee-Martinsen, WaterAid Sweden

17:30 Close of session