Water for Human Settlements

Cities around the world are facing a range of pressures resulting from population growth, climate change and deterioration of urban infrastructure systems. As water demand continues to increase in the future, an increasing number of cities will face challenges of managing scarcer and less reliable water resources in an efficient way. Realities on the ground and the challenges of future pressures have made it obvious that business as usual is not the way forward.
Objectives include: exploring new approaches, technologies and system-wide changes towards integrated urban water management such as flexible and adaptive urban water systems, water sensitive urban design, and water (beneficiation) in urban areas; promoting effective governance and institutional structures of urban water management; and identifying and disseminating best practices for different economic and geographic settings in developed and developed countries.
Water issues in emerging cities and rural settlements in developing countries merit a special emphasis, including the special needs and problems in slums or peri-urban areas that are often the most deprived. New approaches for water management in the city of the future have to be developed.
Strategies to build resilient urban water systems must adopt a broader perspective that recognizes the interdependence of the different water systems. Game-changing approaches and technologies that allow optimization of water quality, quantity, and the water and energy footprint in cities need to be explored.

Focal Areas

For more information on each focal area and the implementation plan, please follow the links below: