Policy Brief Presents Recommendations for Enhancing Urban Water Resilience


Screen-Shot-2017-09-11-at-16.48.53A new UNU-IAS Policy Brief puts forward recommendations for building urban resilience, with a focus on water management. Enhancing Urban Water Resilience: Science-based Approaches and Strategies for Asian Megacities is written by UNU-IAS researchers Shokhrukh-Mirzo Jalilov, Yoshifumi MasagoJunko Nishikawa, and Kazuhiko Takeuchi, together with Xuemei Bai, Thomas Elmqvist, and Kensuke Fukushi. The brief explores how to improve urban water security and achieve water-related Sustainable Development Goals through science-based approaches, strategies, and innovations.


In Asia, urban water security garners much greater attention than any other water-related issue. This is largely because of deteriorating infrastructure, rising demand for water and sanitation, water pollution, floods, and ineffective decision-making, all of which threaten city residents’ safety and security. This policy brief presents several science-based concepts and frameworks that could be applied to Asian urban water issues and contribute to achieving water- related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

  • Utilize the multifunctional nature of urban water systems — integrate city planning with the urban water environment to consider synergies and tradeoffs, and create win-win situations
  • Adapt principles of the circular economy for cities’ water management, to result in an increase of economic benefits
  • Introduce small-scale, decentralized, modern water-quality technologies vital to solving emerging urban water challenges
  • Most importantly, central governments should foster supportive environments for innovative science-based solutions to build urban water resilience