The urban water sector faces a suite of unique challenges that will only become more complicated with population growth, climate change and environmental and water quality concerns. Successful management of these urban water issues at a variety of scales requires a holistic understanding of infrastructure, green space, water quality, allocation, financing, pricing and tradeoffs. However, efficient water management in this sector is particularly limited by a lack of data and the rigidity of legacy institutional systems and governance structure. This lack of information and flexibility exacerbates existing water shortages, aging infrastructure and antiquated financial and management schemes. To fill these gaps, the Urban Water Policy and Innovation team conducts innovative research on big data, virtual and hard infrastructure, financing and management in the urban water sector and its interface with other sectors such as agriculture, industrial, energy and land-use sectors. The team works on novel solutions to enable the water sector’s shift into the 21st century. They develop modern governance, policy, finance, water pricing and market driven tools in an effort to improve the quality of information available to decision-makers working on water management at the local and regional scales.
September 03, 2019
In the face of climate impacts, aging infrastructure, growing populations and depleted groundwater, a diverse water portfolio may quench the thirst of California’s future water needs.
In the Media
August 20, 2019
The Water Values
Newsha Ajami is interviewed on The Water Values podcast on her interdisciplinary approach to urban water systems and sustainable water management.
May 09, 2019
Richard Luthy is quoted in an article discussing how green infrastructure can affect water management.