NICE Transfer Conference

– From Idea to Institutionalization –

On September 28th, the UFZ project 'NICE' was ceremonially transferred to the University of Jordan under the auspices of the Jordanian Ministry of Water and Irrigation. The NICE transfer conference marks the completion of nearly 10 years of joint work on policy and institutional matters.

One of the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development is to "ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all". In the face of climate change, dynamic population growth and increasing refugee flows, efficient water management is of existential importance, especially for arid and semi-arid regions. Jordan is one of the world's most water-scarce regions and exemplifies the Middle East, where groundwater resources, essential for water supply, are the top priority for protection.
It is more important than ever to strengthen Jordan so that it can better withstand the consequences of climate change. Jordan needs every drop of water, and the NICE approach can effectively protect Jordan's most important resource, groundwater.

Jordan has succeeded in developing the foundations of a decentralized wastewater sector as a national water management tool. Technical, economic and ecological facts were elaborated and regional and national decision makers were empowered for a future implementation of the research results.

The UFZ managed an office in Jordan within the framework of the BMBF project NICE at the Jordanian Ministry of Water and Irrigation (2012-2021). The tasks of the office included the conception, moderation and technical support of a Jordanian "round table" for decentralized wastewater management - the cross-sectoral inter-ministerial committee NICE (National Implementation Committee for Effective Integrated Wastewater Management). The UFZ is an appointed founding member of the NICE committee and active in specific technical working groups. A first highlight of the work was the development of a framework for decentralized wastewater management in Jordan, which was presented to the cabinet and politically anchored.

In March 2020, NICE received a mandate from the Jordanian Cabinet to play a coordinating and steering role in the implementation of integrated wastewater system solutions. In the future, the NICE committee will be able to propose specific investment proposals and/or prioritization of investments in the field of integrated wastewater management and bring them to bilateral government consultations or in the context of development bank lending. Another additional NICE task will be to actively monitor and steer selected pilot projects.

After almost a decade, the NICE project has now ended in September 2021.

As part of the NICE Transfer Conference - From Idea to Institutionalization, the celebrations were held in Amman on September 28th, 2021 to take stock, look back at what has been achieved but also to look forward to continue on the path of having a positive impact on water management in the region. High-ranking representatives took part in the event. The German Ambassador, Dr. Bernhard Kampmann, described the project as an excellent example of successful cooperation between Jordan and Germany, which achieved important successes with German participation.

According to the Jordanian Secretary General of the Ministry of Water and Irrigation Dr. Jihad Al-Mahamid, the NICE project has made an indispensable contribution to the Jordanian water sector and has been an essential and outstanding component of  capacity building measures. He thanked the project leader Prof. Roland Müller and the NICE Office manager Dr. Marc Breulmann.

  Dank NICE Office Dank UFZ

During the past years, NICE has created an overall framework for integrated wastewater management via research for implementation and application. From here on, action plans to implement the policy and the framework are needed for sustainability which calls for stronger donor collaboration, as well as also continued applied research and its implementation.

Efforts will continue in the future under Jordanian leadership. The Jordanian Ministry of Water and Irrigation has installed NICE into a permanent institution.

At the end of the NICE Transfer Conference - From Idea to Institutionalization, the official transfer of the future facilitation of NICE took place to the University of Jordan and will be located at the Water, Energy, and Environment Center .


Dr. Marc Breulmann

Further Information

"Implementierungs-Büro Amman (NICE II) - Entwicklung und Umsetzung von administrativ-regulatorischen Werkzeugen am Beispiel des Nationalen Implementierungskomitees für Effektives Dezentrales Abwassermanagement in Jordanien" (01.06.2017 - 30.09.2021).

FKZ: 02WM1458

Phase I „Implementation Office Amman" (Pressemitteilung vom 22.10.2012).
Phase II „Implementation Office Amman" (Pressemitteilung vom 24.07.2017).
Project SMART-Move: Sustainable Management of Available Water Resources with Innovative Technologies - Management of Highly Variable Water (SMART-Move).