The Zambezi River Basin

Water and sustainable development

Davison Saruchera, Jonathan Lautze, Vladimir Smakhtin & Zebediah Phiri



The Zambezi river is the fourth longest in Africa, crossing or bordering Zambia, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. The river basin is widely recognised as one of the most important basins in southern Africa and is the focus of contested development, including water for hydropower and for agriculture and the environment. This book provides a thorough review of water and sustainable development in the Zambezi, in order to identify critical issues and propose constructive ways forward.


There is no analogue to this book to date in how comprehensively the basin’s water resources issues are examined. And for the first time ever, the book explores ways to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 at a basin-level, rather than doing this by individual country. Overall, the book examines a set of very pertinent topics for policy and development in the basin. - Dr Canisius Kanangire


Davison Saruchera is a PhD candidate at the Wits School of Governance, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.

Jonathan Lautze is Senior Researcher at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), based in Pretoria, South Africa.

Vladimir Smakhtin is Director of the United Nations University, Institute for Water, Environment and Health, in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Zebediah Phiri is Executive Secretary of the Zambezi Watercourse Commission, based in Harare, Zimbabwe.