Guillaume Benoit

Mélanie Broin
Agropolis International




Follow us on Twitter

SESAME : Seminar on Water and Food Security in the Mediterranean

21 & 22 February 2013, Agropolis International, Montpellier (France)


This seminar will gather an assembly of 150 experts and decision-makers from all over the Mediterranean rim. A policy brief will be published as an output of this seminar. In addition, plenary speakers and organisers will be invited to form a think-tank about the links between water and food security in the Mediterranean.

This seminar held in the framework of "2013, International Year of Water Cooperation"

Download the synthesis >>

Context and objectives of the seminar

Global changes – globalisation of economies, socio-demographic trends, degradation of natural resources, climate change – give cause for concern about the world’s food security.

The situation is particularly worrying in the Mediterranean region, where water scarcity, over-exploitation and degradation of natural resources and ecosystems, and vulnerability to climate change are combined.

The 2007-2008 food crisis must be taken for an early warning and urge decision-makers to find out solutions at the local, national and regional levels, in particular to secure water resources and ensure food security.

The Mediterranean countries from the North, South and East rims not only share some common problems and strengths, but their destinies are also closely inter-related. In this context, the objective of the seminar is to share points of views and experiences about water and food security in the region, in order to initiate a think-tank on the subject and to produce useful analyses and a policy brief for decision-makers.

Organizing committee

CGAAER : Conseil général de l’alimentation, de l’agriculture et des espaces ruraux

CGDA : Conseil général du développement agricole (Maroc)

AFD : Agence française de développement

Agropolis International

Plan Bleu : centre d’activités régionales financé par l’ensemble des pays riverains et par la communauté européenne dans le cadre des Nations Unies (PNUE/PAM)

CIHEAM : Centre international de hautes études agronomiques méditerranéennes

Echanges Méditerranéens : ONG internationale, rassemble 250 ingénieurs et universitaires des deux rives.

IME : Institut méditerranéen de l’eau

PFE : Partenariat Français pour l’Eau

CGEDD : Conseil général de l’environnement et du développement durable

Provisional programme

Animation seminar: Jean-Yves Ollivier, CGAAER/Echanges Méditerranéens

Thursday, February 21th

9:00 - 9:45

Opening ceremony
Mr President of the Languedoc-Roussillon Regional Council or his representative and Mr President of Agropolis

Introductive speach : Mohamed Aït Kadi, president of the general council for agricultural development (CGDA) – ministry of agriculture and fisheries of Morocco and chairman of the Global Water Partnership technical committee

9:45 - 10:45

Session 1. The Mediterranean situation put into perspective with the global issues

  • Guillaume Benoit, leader of the French Water Partnership's group on water and food security
  • Jean Jaujay, president of the NGO «Echanges Méditerranéens»
10:45 - 11:15 : Coffee break
11:15 - 12:45

Session 2. Field approaches for sustainable management of water resources

Chairperson: Derradji Zouini, professor at University Badji Mokhtar, Annaba, Algeria

Which territorial governance for both water and food security in the long term?

  • François Molle, researcher at the Research Institute for Development (IRD)
  • Hassan Benabderrazik, expert
  • M'hamed El Fasskaoui, Director of the Agence du Bassion Hudraulique du Souss Massa Drâa

How to organize at the local level to better manage agricultural water: the contribution of research to participatory approaches

  • Serge Marlet, researcher at CIRAD
  • Saâd Seddik, executive director of agricultural engineering and water at the Tunisian ministry of agriculture
  • Marcel Küper/Jean-Yves Jamin, researchers at CIRAD

Approaches developed by private stakeholders

13:00 - 14:30 : Lunch
14:30 - 16:30

Session 3. The water and food security issue in various Mediterranean countries: which priority actions at the national and international levels?

Chairperson: Sophie Villers, president of the department "prospective, society, international", CGAAER

  • The case of Tunisia by Abdelkader Hamdane, researcher at National Agronomy Institute of Tunis (INAT) and former executive director of agricultural engineering in Tunisia
  • The case of Algeria by Mohamed Si Youcef, professor at the Polytechnic School of Algiers, former executive director of environment in Algeria
  • The case of Egypt, by Mahmoud Abu-Zeid, president of the Arab Water Council and former ministry of water resources and irrigation in Egypt

16:30 - 17:00 : Coffee break

17:00 - 18:30

Session 3. Continued

  • The case of Turkey by Bülent Sönmez, Department Head of General Directorate of Agricultural Research and Policies affiliated to the Ministry of Food Agriculture and Livestock in Turkey
  • The case of Spain by Milagros Couchoud, president of the Mediterranean Water Institute and former director of CEDEX (centre of studies and experiments of public works) in Spain
  • The regional approach at the Mediterranean level by Jean-Luc François, head of agriculture and rural development section at the French Agency for Development (AFD)

Friday, February 22nd

9:00 - 10:30

Session 4. Water and food security in the Mediterranean: which views for the future?

Chairperson: Jean-Louis Rastoin, emeritus professorat Montpellier SupAgro, director of the UNESCO Chair "Alimentations du monde" / Associate Expert IPEMED

  • The point of view of the economist and policy analyst Georges Corm, professor at University of Saint-Joseph in Beirut, former ministry of finance, Lebanon
  • The point of view of the geographer and sociologist Grigori Lazarev, international consultant
  • The point of view of the agronomist Mahmoud Solh, executive director of ICARDA (International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas)
10:30-11:00 : Coffee break
11:00 - 12:00

Session 4. Continued

  • The point of view of the water jurist Houria Tazi Sadeq, president of the Maghreb-Machreq Alliance for water and member of the World Water Council
  • The water issue and its implications in policies, institutions and governance, from the local to the regional level, by Gérard Viatte, former director of agriculture at OECD and FAO advisor
12:00 - 12:30


  • Bertrand Hervieu, vice-president of the general council for food, agriculture and rural areas within the French ministry of agriculture, agro-food and forests
12:30 - 13:30 : Closing ceremony and cocktail


During the seminar, the IRD exhibition « les territoires de l’eau : irrigation et partage de l’eau en Méditerranée » will be presented at Agropolis International.

More informations >>


Organized by


Mis en ligne le 03.03.14

Contact :

Mélanie Broin,Agropolis International

Extrait du site http://www.agropolis.fr/news/2013-sesame-seminar-water-food-security.php