Water and Urbanization

Problems and drivers
The future will see increased need for Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM) due to increased flood risk in cities related to climate change and increased urbanization. The management of newly urbanized areas, efficient water use in urban areas, as well as improved water quality and ecological status of urban water bodies will be a key for improving human quality of life in the future.

Policy justification
Both China and the EU are focusing on ensuring sustainable urbanization as a mean to resolve the challenges related to developing the future economies.

Overall objective
The overall objective of this Focus Area is to improve the efficient and sustainable use, management and allocation of urban water resources, flood prevention, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and use of water in the urban landscape and environment, and to provide substantial input to the overall EU China dialogue on Sustainable Urbanization.

Immediate objectives
Specific objectives will be to support policy makers, businesses and water managers in practical implementation and adaptation of measures to improve water management in urban areas, and particularly:

  • Contribute to an enabling environment of policies, legislation and financing and thus improving urban water management and security
  • Engage governments, businesses and researchers in a comprehensive dialogue on the different aspects of Urban water management
  • Draw on Chinese, EU and other international experiences to inform development of financial, economic and legislative tools such as incentive schemes and adequate pricing mechanisms, cost benefit analysis, the polluter pays principle, Water Framework Directive (WFD), Flood Directive, Drinking Water Directive, Water Safety Planning, Guidelines for reduction of water losses, for knowledge transfer from Europe to China
  • To provide policy recommendations for urban water management in China and EU based on the above experiences
  • Involve several EU member states, and Chinese provinces, cities and other partners in order to promote knowledge exchange on urban water based on collections of lessons learned and best practices related to urban water management in China and Europe
  • Promote options for the development of joint projects, demonstration of test sites and other types of application of technical and institutional tools that improve urban water management
  • Promote new business potential and market opportunities for European industries, including SMEs to provide expertise, technology and services to improve urban water management.

Link to other Co-lead Programs

  • The present Co-lead Programs forms part of this Focus Area:
    Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM) (Denmark)
  • Flood Risk Management & Dike Safety (The Netherlands)

More co-lead programs may be included at a later stage.

Further info

Mr. Gerard de Vries, gerard.de.vries01@rws.nl