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Water security in an urbanized world

Fernandez Milan, Blanca

FG Städtebau und Urbanisierung

Ensure access to water and sanitation for all is one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) recently recognized at the international community. The combination of natural constraints, population forecasts and climate change threat this and other SDGs closely related. In cities, inequalities in water security become more explicit as complexity in water management given by institutional and market barriers increases. This looks at the threats to ensuring access to water in cities for different world regions and reviews recent literature on water governance and sustainable water management to identify drivers and barriers to just burdens on urban water security. Intrinsic factors related to individual characteristics influence the distribution of water in cities to a certain extent. The relevance of extrinsic factors such as governance structures and pricing schemes will increase in parallel to the forecasted water scarcity. In the discussion we group different measures into three lines of action: efficiency improvement, water democratization and holistic approaches in water governance. We call for further interdisciplinary between the fields of urban water governance and urban hydrology to address the increasing challenges of domestic water allocation under stronger equity objectives.