Platform for call for papers of the 22nd AfWASA International Congress and Exhibition

18 - 22 February 2024  |   Guinea Conakry

Call for papers

Presentation of the Congress

Every two years, the African Water and Sanitation Association (AfWASA) organizes an international congress that brings together all its members, international organizations, experts, policy makers and development partners to take stock of the development of the water, sanitation and environment sector in Africa.

The Congress of the African Water and Sanitation Association is a scientific and technical forum coupled with a major international exhibition, which includes technical sessions, workshops, side events, «B-to-B», «one-to-one» meetings. Over the past 12 years, the event has recorded a record number of participants: 1,600 delegates in 2010 in Kampala, 900 in 2012 in Marrakech, 2,000 in 2014 in Abidjan, 1500 in 2016 in Nairobi, 1200 in 2018 in Bamako; 2500 in 2020 in Kampala and 3500 in Abidjan in 2023.

The 22nd Congress will be held from 18 to 22 february 2024 in Conakry, Guinea on the theme:

«Supporting Human Development in Africa through Investments in the Water and Sanitation Sector».

Benefiting from the continuous improvement of the health situation in several regions of the world formerly plagued by the Covid 19 pandemic, the Conakry 2024 congress will be organized only face-to-face.

More than 3000 participants are expected at this major event which takes place in a context of international mobilization around the Sustainable Development Goals at the end of the situation of confinement of countries / region, linked to the Covid 19 pandemic and other diseases that lead to confinement of peoples. Delegates will also be keen to ensure that the challenges of universal water and sanitation coverage in Africa are addressed, in line with the guidelines of the international community despite common health barriers.

Message of the President of AfWASA

Dr. Eng. Silver MUGISHA MD NWSC, Uganda


The African Water and Sanitation Association (AfWASA), established in 1980, is a professional organization of institutions, companies and operators operating in the water, sanitation and environment sector in Africa. Today, our network includes more than 200 active member companies from 45 African countries, more than 150 affiliate members composed of individuals or groups of individuals from all continents, working in industry, technology, education and consultancy in the water, sanitation and environment sector, and which allow our organization to position itself as a key platform for the water and sanitation sector on the continent.

Most recently in February 2023 on our 21st congress which took place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, we reaffirmed our desire for inclusion in the water and sanitation sector by opening our organization to new

categories of members such as municipalities, NGOs and other sister organizations with whom we intend to develop win-win partnerships to accelerate the achievement of our mutual goals.

The theme of the 22nd AfWASA Congress to be held from 18 to 22 February 2024 in Conakry, Guinea is: «Supporting Human Development in Africa through Investments in the Water and Sanitation Sector».

The theme that reflects the desire of our organization to accompany the international community in its fight to maintain and strengthen economic growth and human development. This cannot be achieved without universal access to water and sanitation services, and to do so, we need to mobilize more multifaceted investments.

The Congress of the African Water and Sanitation Association, over the years, acquires a dimension that goes beyond the sole framework of our continent and presents itself as an unmissable event that attracts an increasing number of professionals. It is a unique opportunity that brings together in one place, all the players in the sector, to question the major challenges facing our continent, to be able to provide solutions. I invite all professionals, development partners, policy makers, and all those with an interest in the issue of water and sanitation in Africa, to join this important pan-African forum so that together we join forces to advance the issue of the supply of drinking water and adequate sanitation services in Africa.


Message of the President of the Congress

Mr. Aboubacar Camara Managing Director SEG

The Republic of Guinea, nicknamed the «Water Tower of West Africa», is the privileged place to host the 22nd edition of the International Congress and Exhibition of the African Water and Sanitation Association.

This major event, scheduled for February 18-22, 2024, will be held at the emblematic site of the People’s Palace in Conakry.

Guinea, rich in its water resources, offers an ideal setting to discuss crucial issues related to access to water and sanitation on the African continent. This is an opportunity to gather in the round of existing investment opportunities in the water and sanitation sector: more than 3 billion dollars to invest in the sector in the Republic of Guinea.

Companies, Associations, Experts, the Republic of Guinea is waiting for you to work together in this sector that has become a priority in order to meet this major challenge. Being convinced that your contribution will be valuable for the success of this congress, we hope that you can join us in Guinea to establish new partnerships, share your ideas and experiences, discover this beautiful country and contribute to the sustainable development of Africa.

The Conakry Congress, through its scientific and technical component, and its major international exhibition, will offer a unique platform to African politicians, development partners, the scientific and technical world to address the theme «Supporting Human Development in Africa through Investments in the Water and Sanitation Sector».

By investing in sustainable access for all to water and sanitation services, people as a whole emerge truly fulfilled. This is more realistic and efficient given that water alone accounts for most of the indicators of sustainable development and, in a current context marked by climate change, investing in innovations for water and sanitation is the hoped- for way to improve people’s resilience and support their development. Together, we can build concrete and sustainable solutions that will benefit the people of Africa.

The Water Company of Guinea (SEG-SA) will make every effort to meet the challenge of an irreproachable organization, to make you discover the Water Tower of West Africa, the Lands of Soundiata Keïta, with its legendary hospitality.


The call from the Chair of Programme committee, Chair of AfWASA Scientific and Technical Council

Dr. Eng. Papa Samba Diop
Chair of AfWASA Scientific and Technical Council

Africa is the continent with one of the highest population growth rates, with a doubling of urban population and urbanized areas every 10 to 15 years, significantly increasing water stress in these expanding areas. And yet, there is no shortage of water on this continent where reserves are estimated at more than 660,000 cubic kilometers.

Paradoxically, Africa remains the continent where a third of the population, or 330 million people, do not have access to drinking water and where health problems due to lack of drinking water are persistent. These situations require water companies to be even more efficient, and the entire water/sanitation community to mobilize so that our container meets the Sustainable Development Goals that «guarantee access to water and sanitation for all» by 2030.

The current approach would therefore be to find and implement actions likely to accelerate access to water and basic sanitation services on the continent. To do this, it is necessary to innovate and, above all, to seek and move towards sustainable solutions, while taking into account the current

context strongly marked by the phenomenon of climate change, which spares no continent. This is why our congress revolves around the theme: «Supporting human development in Africa through investments in the Water and Sanitation sector»

The Strategic and Technological Council, the linchpin of our organization, brings together all the executives, directors, engineers and technicians of water companies, who meet regularly to identify the problems of the water sector in Africa with a view to proposing solutions. For almost two years, the various commissions that compose it have been hard at work to identify all the contours of the different themes that will bring us together from 18 to 22 February 2024 in Conakry, Guinea, and to ensure that all the conditions are met to advance the debate on the issues of concern to the water and sanitation sector on the continent.

The 22nd Congress to be held in Conakry, Guinea, will bring together the entire water and sanitation community from Africa and the world, with researchers, academics, water company leaders, policy makers, young water professionals, and donors. All these actors and partners in the sector take part in the reflection by proposing communications or presentations, by organizing parallel sessions or by participating in the international exhibition which expects a little more than 2000 face-to-face visitors and about 2000 by video conference.

We invite you all to make your proposals for papers, in accordance with our theme and the different sub-themes, as defined below.


Invitation to submit a paper

We invite the entire scientific community, professionals in the water and sanitation sector and all actors engaged in the fight for access for all to water and sanitation to submit a paper to be presented at the 22nd Congress of the African Association for Water and Sanitation (AAEA) in Conakry.

The relevant and interesting papers should address issues related to the general theme and sub-themes of the congress.

At the same time, we invite our industry partners to 

propose thematic sessions that fit into one or the other of the sub-themes we propose below.

A selection committee will examine the communications received on the basis of a reading grid determining the clarity, relevance and originality of the proposed approaches.

Interested persons should send an abstract of approximately 1000 words of their communication including their first and last names, their professional affiliation, their address and the title of their communication

Deadline for submission of abstracts

Abstracts should be sent no later than Wednesday, October 25, 2023 to the following link:


Deadline for submission of complete communications

Authors whose abstracts have been selected will be notified to submit a more complete paper, no later than December 15, 2023

The official languages of communications are English and French. The papers will be published in the proceedings of the congress and on the AfWASA website.

Theme and sub-themes

The overall theme of the 22nd Congress is «Supporting Human Development in Africa through Investments in the Water and Sanitation Sector»

With this choice, the AfWASA intends to draw attention on the need to accelerate the pace of growth towards universal access to water and sanitation services in Africa, in a world in the midst of a health crisis marked by diseases that impose the confinement of people within cities, countries or regions. It will be an opportunity to present the operational know-how of professionals and actors in the water and sanitation sector and to discuss solutions approaches to address these critical challenges for improving service performance for better consideration of user concerns.

    1. Water Resources Management
      • Integrated Water Resources Management;
      • Water resource preservation;
      • Modelling for water resource management; 
      • Climate change resilience and adaptation;
      • Rainwater management.
    2. Sustainable access to water services for all.
      • Governance and institutional framework;
      • Non-Revenue Water reduction;
      • Pro-poor water services;
      • Water safety;
      • Drinking water treatment technologies.
    3. Sustainable access to sanitation services for all
      • Sanitation policies and institutional frameworks;
      • Sewerage services management;
      • Non sewerage sanitation management;
      • Sanitation safety;
      • Wastewater treatment technologies and feacal sludge management;
      • Resource recovery and circular economy;
      • Private sector participation in non-sewerage sanitation.
    4. Innovation in water and sanitation
      • Innovations for water and sanitation services;
      • Smart ICT for water and sanitation services;
      • Water and sanitation operators’ partnerships;
      • Mainstreaming gender in water and sanitation services;
      • Career building and competencies development;
      • Performance benchmarking and Networking.
    5. Financing in the Water and Sanitation sector.
      • Innovative Finance;
      • Pricing and cost recovery;
      • Public-Private Partnership for Water and Sanitation Service;
      • Local market financing mechanisms.

Important Dates

Final deadline for submissions and beginning of evaluations
25th October 2023
Review of abstracts by Program committee
01st – 15th November 2023
Approval of final list of selected authors by Program committee
21st November 2023 
Submission of final papers by authors 15th Dec 2023
Final Approval by Program committee and communication to authors
20th Dec 2023
Confirmation of attendance of authors
15th January 2024
Preparation of book of abstracts
10th February 2024

Memory of the 21st AfWASA Congress, Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire

Official Photo of the opening ceremony of the 21st AfWASA Congress

Photo of the 4th Mayors’ Forum on Water and Sanitation Promotion at the 21st AfWASA Congress

A view of the participants at the opening session of the 21st AfWASA congress and Exhibition

The Ministry of water and sanitation of Côte d’Ivoire giving an interview at the opening of the 21st AfWASA congress and Exhibition

Official Photo of the 5th Forum of the African Young Professionals in Water and Sanitation

Official Photo of the 5th Forum of the African Women Professionals in Water and Sanitation