Many of Indonesia’s watersheds are reaching a critical stage. As a result of higher rates of erosion and sedimentation, the number of critical watersheds in Indonesia has increased from 22 in 1984 to 58 in 2000 and in 2014 this number has reached 108. This result in food security is being threatened because there is insufficient water available for agriculture purposes due to catchment degradation, especially in the upper parts of the watersheds. At the same time, Indonesia’s new government focused its national development programs on food security for the next five years. For these reasons Indonesia’s National Development Planning Agency believes that it is timely to develop a national policy on Integrated Water Conservation Management (IWCM). To provide the rationale and suggested content for such a national policy, this paper has been prepared based onfocused group discussions with relevant interests at the national and regional levels. To obtain specific input from regional stakeholders, workshops were held in Medan, Yogyakarta, Banjarmasin, Nusa Tenggara Barat and Makassar as well as line agencies based in the state capital of Jakarta from October 2014 to March 2015. At the landscape level, the formulation of national policy on IWCM was based on integrated watershed management analysis as water resources within a specific watershed are integrated into other resources within an ecosystem. This action research recommends the following: a) integrating the IWCM into the regular regional development activities, b) encouraging local agreements on water resource conservation including local adat communities, c) formulating attractive economic incentives in implementing IWCM programs, d) using corporate social responsibility and payment for environment services funding to boost water resource conservation program at village level, and e) involving actively women in the IWCM programs. Considering that socio-cultural aspects are also playing an important role in the IWCM, a national-level of institutional arrangement on IWCM will also be proposed.
Keywords: IWCM; food security; green and blue water; watershed; institutional arrangement; Indonesia