New Tool Of The CBP Framework
CITY BLUEPRINT APPROACH: KEY OPPORTUNITIES FOR INDIA’S URBAN WATER CHALLENGES
The challenges of water, waste, and climate change are staggering because of their complexity, uncertainty and largely unknown risks that can have large impacts. Even if all countries implement their intended contribution to reduce GH Gemissions, as agreed at the Paris Climate Conference in December 2015, warming is projected to reach 2.7°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100 (UNFCCC 2015). Hence, it has become a necessity to adapt to a changing climate with more extreme weather patterns and a rising sea level. In cities, population growth and migration are estimated to lead to an urban growth of about 2.4 billion people by 2050 (UN 2015).
This unprecedented increase already leads to vast urban expansion in fl ood prone areas, large-scale surface water pollution and depletion of freshwater resources (Ligtvoet et al. 2014; Koop and Van Leeuwen 2016). India is a rapidly urbanising country and the expected urban growth is about 404 million people by 2050 (UNDESA). Fresh water is becoming scarce due to ineffi cient agricultural practices, while at the same time, the industrial and domestic use is projected to double between 2005 and 2025 (Burton et al. 2011). The urbanisation and population growth are already putting strong pressure on India’s cities and are projected to form a serious barrier to the country’s economic growth and development.
In the search for solutions to India’s urban water challenges, the focus has been on technology.
However, technological hardware only works within an existing network of cooperating institutions, practitioners and stakeholders (OECD 2015; Bird, 2016). At present, the local governance networks often lack suffi cient capacity to implement the strategic goals and maintenance schemes set by national institutions (Kumar et al. 2012). Hence, improving India’s water management and water infrastructure mainly requires a strengthening of waterrelated institutions, especially at the local scale or level. Therefore, this paper aims to provide useful insights and heuristics in how to incorporate governance aspects into India’s Smart City approach.
This is done by introducing the City Blueprint Approach, providing a brief overview of our main results in Europe and beyond, assessing the water governance of the city of Ahmedabad, and fi nally, formulating next steps to improve India’s urban water management and governance, and encourage cities to become water-wise.