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A world water library is being built in Reichenau

The 'Graubünden Wasser' (Graubünden Water) Association is building a world library on water in Reichenau (Canton Graubünden, Switzerland). The World Water Library (WWL) will be a place where knowledge and solutions for the future can be collected and developed. It is being created in Reichenau Castle with the support of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

Daniel Maselli, Politikberater für Wasserfragen bei der DEZA (links), Ernst Bromeis, Initiant Graubünden Wasser und der Weltwasserbibliothek vor dem Schloss Reichenau. Bild: Marco Hartmann für Graubünden Wasser

The first "World Water Library" (WWL) will be created in Reichenau Castle over the next few months. At the headquarters of the Graubünden Water Association, selected documents (e.g. books, maps), digital information carriers (photos, films, sound recordings, etc.) and objects such as water containers and samples from all over the world will be collected and made accessible to the public. The World Water Library is intended to evolve into a meeting place where interested parties from all over the world can discuss the use and protection of water as a resource and develop solutions for current and future problems for the benefit of future generations.

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) supports the establishment of the World Water Library. "The cooperation with the SDC helps us become better known beyond the canton and Switzerland and also attract materials from all over the world for our initiative," explained Ernst Bromeis, initiator of Graubünden Wasser.

"The SDC supports the World Water Library financially, conceptually, and with its contacts abroad and in Switzerland," says Daniel Maselli, the SDC's policy advisor for water. We can imagine that water libraries similar to the one in Reichenau will be set up on other continents around the world to collect and disseminate knowledge and solutions to water-related problems."

Water connects humanity

Graubünden Wasser and the SDC are calling on organisations and individuals around the world to bring or send unique books, pictures, films or other relevant materials to Reichenau. "We all have a say in what water-related knowledge the library will one day offer," says Daniel Maselli. "The SDC is interested in stimulating similar initiatives in the global South. There are already initial interested parties in Ivory Coast and Tunisia. It would be a dream coming true if this first World Water Library would trigger a global network helping to better manage water as the precondition of life on Earth."

"Water connects all parts of the world and all people," said Ernst Bromeis. "Our library will start small, grow steadily and serve as a source of knowledge, inspiration and encounters over the years. We want to raise awareness of the element of water and create a place where knowledge ranging from indigenous wisdom to artificial intelligence comes together to benefit humanity and preserve a healthy natural environment."

Schools and learners immerse themselves in the world of water

In Reichenau, school classes and learners will help shape and benefit from the World Water Library. Graubünden Wasser is developing educational modules for different age groups and school types in the canton of Graubünden. Through the SDC's contacts, learners and students from many places in the world will be able to exchange ideas with their peers and work together for a water-secure future. 


About Graubünden Water

The Graubünden Water Association actively promotes the importance of water in society by organising educational programs, workshops and events on the subject of water. From its symbolic headquarters in Reichenau, where the 'Hinterrhein' and' Vorderrhein' rivers meet to form the proper Rhine, it coordinates activities implemented in the canton of Graubünden and throughout Switzerland.

About the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation SDC

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is Switzerland's international cooperation agency within the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). SDC is responsible for the overall coordination of development activities worldwide, for cooperation with Eastern Europe, and for the humanitarian aid delivered by the Swiss Confederation.

Swiss development cooperation aims to reduce poverty. It also fosters economic self-reliance and state autonomy, contributes to improving production conditions, helps find solutions to environmental problems, and provides better access to education and basic healthcare services.


Graubünden Wasser media release: 21 March 2024.

Christian Gartmann has been mandated with communications and media work for Graubünden Wasser since its  beginning in 2023.