Land & Water

Diagnostic tools for investments in water for agriculture and energy

Harnessing the full potential of water to contribute to food and energy security requires a deep understanding of the existing situation of the water sector in countries, including: the use of water resources; the legal, policy and institutional frameworks governing the management of water resources; and the level of investment in water resource management.



FAO has developed three diagnostic tools for investments in water for agriculture and energy. Combined, these constitute an integrated platform for systematically assessing, at the country level, trends in the use of water resources, policy and institutional frameworks, investment needs, and the potential for boosting the sustainable use of water. The three tools work synergistically to provide a clear representation of the three dimensions of water resources in agricultural development and hydropower generation – context; institutions and policy; and financial investment.

  1. The Context Tool provides indicators for understanding the need for and potential of investments in water management, with the aim of developing water resources for food (via crops and aquaculture) and energy production.
  2. The Institutional and Policy Tool identifies practical ways in which to reflect institutional, legal and policy realities, thereby providing a solid base for policy and investment design and implementation.
  3. The Investment Tool provides reliable and project-based estimates of ongoing and planned investments in the development of water resources for food and energy production in the short, medium and long terms – within countries and for water resources that span international borders.