Nature-Based Solutions for Water Management in the Peri-Urban


The Consortium

Project NATWIP is implemented by a transnational as well as transdisciplinary Consortium consisting of five main partners and two associate partners, located across the globe in Europe, Africa, Asia and South America. Each partner is recognized for excellence in the production of the scientific knowledge, having long history of research and development, contributing to practical solutions and policy mechanisms.

The partnership brings together institutions engaged in research and/or education on sustainable development and water sustainability from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. The study places an emphasis on integrated transdisciplinary research that would create a bridge between these different perspectives and also between science and policy. Gaps between environmental, social and economic aspects related to NBS implementation for water management will also be addressed.

From the social sciences, the NATWIP consortium draws inspiration from scholarship within fields of public policy, political science, environmental anthropology, geography, environmental history and spatial planning. From the technical sciences strength is drawn from a range of water quality and quantity knowledge and tools as well as knowledge on managing risk and uncertainty.

The lead partner of NATWIP is the Department of Environmental Science and Tourism Studies, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies at Södertörn University, where inter- and transdisciplinary research rooted in social and ecological sciences aims to understand the complex interactions between society and environment.

Dr. Nandita Singh is the Consortium Coordinator of NATWIP, responsible for coordinating and managing the project activities. She is Associate Professor in Water Resources Management and has a long experience of over 18 years of research in the field. Her research spans diverse water-related issues including policy and practice in water and sanitation, water quality and technologies, gender and water, human right to water, climate change adaptation, stakeholder participation and local knowledge systems on water management. Communication between science and society in general and ‘behavioural change communication’ for water actors in particular are her interest areas on the applied side, towards which she co-manages an exclusive website “Millennium Water Story” that communicates on different issues, problems and prospects in water resources management through the medium of photographs.

NGI is a leading international centre for research & consulting within geosciences for over 60 years. The Geotechnics and Environment section here is heavily involved in both consultancy and research projects aimed at reducing waste, increasing value of natural resources as well as improving building and construction practices. The Risk, Slope stability and Climate adaptation (RiSC) section is leading NGI's work with risk and climate adaptation and is involved in consultancy and research projects aimed at vulnerability assessments, risk management and risk-reducing measures, coastal erosion, as well as nature-based solutions.The NGI team consists of two senior research scientists, Dr. Sarah Hale and Dr. Amy Oen.

Dr. Sarah Hale is the Principal Investigator with expertise related to the environmental fate, behaviour and monitoring of organic pollutants in the environment.She has a great interest in the role of regulation and policy in chemical management as well as the reduction of waste for a sustainable society. She currently leads a Norwegian Research Council funded project PFOSlo (2017-2021) to reduce the negative effect of Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) on the environment and human health.

Dr Amy Oen is engaged in research at the interface between the fields of climate adaptation and environmental science. Over the past 20 years this work has included risk assessment, cost-benefit analysis, pollution control measures, monitoring, integrated river basin management, as well as knowledge brokering to improve stakeholder involvement. She has led /coordinated several multi-disciplinary national and international research projects, namely, H2020 project PHUSICOS (2018-2022) with NBS for risk reduction in rural mountain areas; EU FP7 project ARCH (2011-2015) to manage multiple pressures on lagoons; European Research Area for Climates Services funded project EVOKED (2017-2020) focusing on climate services on the vulnerable water sectors.

UPC is a public institution dedicated to higher education and research, specialised in architecture, engineering and technology. Within the UPC, the University Research Institute for Sustainability Science and Technology (IS.UPC) promotes sustainability in different fields, where the Laboratory of Social Studies of Civil Engineering (LESEC) focuses on socio-environmental and urban studies. LESEC expertise is on transition management to sustainability, lifestyles and transformative capacities, urban systems and landscapes as mobility and water to generate knowledge and develop conceptual tools for socio-environmental impact evaluation, participatory processes and conflict analysis. The multidisciplinary project team here comprises Dr. Elisabet Roca Bosch, Prof. Míriam Villares, MSc. Andrea Ramírez Agudelo and Roger Porcar.

Dr. Elisabet Roca Bosch, the Principal Investigator, is an Associate Professor at the Technical School of Civil Engineers of Barcelona (Barcelona-Tech, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya). She holds a PhD in Environmental Sciences and coordinates the Laboratory of Social Studies of Civil Engineering. Her research addresses governance and socio-environmental aspects of mobility and urban planning, with special attention to adaptation to climate change. She has participated in 15 research projects (European and National) and produced more than thirty international publications.

Dr. Míriam Villares Junyent is PhD in Human Geography and Professor of University School at UPC Barcelona-Tech. She is specialist in urban planning and the socio-environmental impact of civil engineering in the Technical School of Civil Engineers of Barcelona and of Social Sciences in the Master's Degree in Science and Technology of Sustainability. She is a researcher of the Laboratory of Social Studies of Civil Engineering. She has participated in European research projects and has coordinated projects funded by the Spanish Ministry of economy, industry and competitiveness. She is currently Secretary of the IS.UPC.

Andrea Ramírez-Agudelo is research assistant at LESEC and Phd student in Sustainability at IS.UPC, focus on urban transitions through "Collaborative Management for Smart and Sustainable Cities. Analysis of the Littoral Besòs as a Socio-Technical System in Transition". Her background is MSc in Urbanism from Delft University of Technology (NL), Architect from the National University of Colombia.

Roger Porcar Anento is an engineer of Industrial Design and former student of the Master's Degree in Sustainability Science and Technology at UPC. During his master's thesis, he developed some indicators of Ecosystem Services provision at the urban scale using GIS software. He collaborates with LESEC in project researchs on coastal adaptation to Climate Change and ecosystem services analysis in urban and peri-urban areas.

Stellenbosch University is a research-intensive university which aims to advance knowledge in service of society, while enriching and transforming local, continental and global communities. Here, the Department of Conservation Ecology and Entomology (ConsEnt) engages in teaching, research and technology transfer in ecology, conservation and management of utilized landscapes and their surrounds. It is a leader in research on the restoration of natural vegetation in the arid areas of South Africa, and three relevant thrust areas here are restoration ecology and landscape ecology; conservation planning and management in agricultural landscapes; and applied physiological ecology. The project team here comprises Prof. Karen Joan Esler and Dr. Alanna Jane Rebelo.

Prof Karen Joan Esler is Professor and Head of the ConsEnt department, and the Principal Investigator for NATWIP. Her research is at the forefront of transdisciplinary research which acknowledges the need for diverse perspectives to enhance understanding of complex social-ecological challenges and to bridge the “knowing-doing gap” for sustainable actions. She has considerable experience in ecology of semi-arid and Mediterranean-type vegetation and the overall goal of her research has been to understand how drivers of change (climate change, over-exploitation, habitat fragmentation and alien invasion) influence population and community structure and processes. The applied aspect of this work has been to advise on aspects of best-practice management, restoration and conservation.

Dr. Alanna Jane Rebelo is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the ConsEnt department. Her research focus is on ecosystem service quantification, using a combination of applied remote sensing techniques, field measurements and hydrological modelling. She is currently involved in interdisciplinary research into the hydrological benefits of investing in ecological infrastructure, including alien clearing from mountain catchments, wetland rehabilitation and revegetation. In 2018 she received one of the Vice-Rector Top 20 Awards for postdoctoral researchers and was the winner of the Bronze Award for the best botanical PhD in South Africa in 2019. Also in 2019 she was awarded a TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visit to Germany. Dr Rebelo is the author of 13 peer-reviewed publications.

A.N. College leads the state of Bihar in India in transdisciplinary, multinational research and exchange programmes. The Department of Environment and Water Management (EWM) here has a multidisciplinary team that engages in research on different dimensions of water and environmental management in connection with urban as well as peri-urban and rural settings. It has 5 well equipped laboratories - Instrumentation, Hydrology, Microbiology, Environmental Chemistry, and G.I.S.; a rainwater harvesting unit & a vermi-composting unit for supporting education and research on water as well as NBS. The multidisciplinary team engaging in research here comprises Dr. Nupur Bose and Dr. Ratna Amrit.

Dr. Nupur Bose is Associate Professor in Geography, and Research Faculty at EWM, leading and participating in a number of water-related research projects. The latest of these is titled “Nature and nurture in arsenic induced toxicity of Bihar, India”. She has more than 20 publications to her credit and her research interests include spatio-temporal assessment of drinking water quality and availability; socio-economic aspects of compromised drinking water quality, and implemented mitigation strategies; and identification of parameters that influence sustainability of clean water supply including climate change.

Dr. Ratna Amrit specializes in Environmental History with focus on traditional water practices. Her study includes assessment of present-day floods & embankments of River Kosi, & their ramifications on the socio-economic milieu. She has worked extensively on tracing the present status of traditional water management in Bihar, taking a critical approach towards the revival of traditional surface water storage & rainwater harvesting systems.

Shivangi Shreya holds a degree in Environment and Water Management and is pursuing her Master's in Environmental Sciences at A.N. College, Patliputra University, India. Currently, she is writing her master’s thesis on "Nature-based Solutions for Water Management in India", identifying and analysing the different forms of NBS adopted and policy support for NBS in urban and peri-urban areas. She is also working as a 'Project Associate' for Millennium Water Story. She received the Linnaeus Palme Scholarship to study a semester at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Sweden and has research experience in the areas of 'Water Footprint' and 'Water Quality'.

KTH is an associate partner in NATWIP. It is a one of Europe’s leading technical and engineering universities working with industry and society in the pursuit of sustainable solutions to some of humanity’s greatest challenges such as climate change, urbanization and water sustainability. The participating department at KTH is Urban Planning & Environment (UPE) which engages in research & education focused on sustainable development, with a broad range of interdisciplinary expertise including engineering, socio-economic, modelling, and planning for use of natural resources & built environment.

Dr. Lina Suleiman is the participating researcher from KTH. She has PhD degree titled “TeknDr. in Infrastructure with specialization in Planning & Implementation” from KTH. She was a Post-Doc Scholar & a visiting researcher at University of Newcastle & Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, & has received many grants & awards. She received two grants for PhD project from the Swedish Agency for Development Cooperation (Sida), and as a main applicant, she received a postdoctoral scholarship & grants for 4 research projects, from Swedish academic research funding agencies Formas & Vetenskapsrådet. She is the leader for project “UrbanRain”, & for another one on civil society.

IIS-Rio is an associate partner in NATWIP. Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, it develops research and projects that seek solutions to the challenges associated with sustainable development. The focus is on promoting sustainable land use, in particular biodiversity conservation, ecosystem service provisioning, sustainable soil management, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and the socioeconomic development of actors involved in these processes. The research and projects include actions aimed at communication, scientific dissemination and education, which seek to engage new actors endeavors and make its research products more accessible to a wide audience.

Dr. Agnieszka Ewa Latawiec is an Executive Director at the IIS and a coordinator of the Centre for Conservation and Sustainability Science at the Department of Geography and Environment at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio). She holds BSc in Engineering for Environmental Protection and MSc in Environmental Protection, with specialization in soil and plant chemistry. She obtained PhD from the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia. She is now a senior honorary lecturer at the UEA. She works with land management, decision making and ecosystem services.

Aline Rodrigues holds a degree and a Master´s degree in Geography and Environment at PUC-Rio. Currently, she is a PhD student in Geography at the same institution with a doctoral stay in the School of Environment Science at University of East Anglia (UK). She is research assistant at IIS and integrates research groups as Applied Soil Science (PUC-Rio), Centre for Conservation and Sustainability Science of Rio (CSRio) and Landscape Studies Centre (PUC-Rio).

Ana Paula Morais de Lima holds a degree and a Master´s degree in Geography and Environment at PUC-Rio. She did internship on Brazilian Agricultural research company working with projects related to payment for water ecosystem services in the country and analysing their monitoring systems, identifying standards, gaps and perspectives. Currently, she works as research assistant at IIS.

Viviane Dib has a degree in Biology and holds a Master’s degree in Ecology. During her Masters, Viviane’s studies focused on aquatic and ecosystem ecology, especially on the relationship between biodiversity loss and ecosystem functioning. She has work experience in the private sector relating to bioremediation of water bodies. Currently, she is doing a PhD at the Federal Rural University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRRJ), where she is evaluating the influence of land use and land cover on water related ecosystems services, aiming to propose a prioritization map of forest restoration in the Atlantic Forest.

Dr. Veronica Maioli holds a Biology degree with a master in Botany and a PhD in Ecology from the State University of Rio de Janeiro, where she developed part of the research at the Lüdwig-Maximilian Universität (Germany). In parallel, she worked as an environmental consultant since 2007 carrying out forest inventories and environmental licensing in the Brazilian biomes. She has experience in multidisciplinary projects with emphasis on applied ecology, socio-ecological systems, ethnobotany, biological and cultural conservation.

Fernanda Tubenchlak is a biologist and holds a master’s degree in Ecology. She has studied one year of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia (UK) through Science without Borders program, as part of her undergraduate degree. During her Masters, she has focused on Forest Landscape Restoration and has experience of interdisciplinary projects related to biodiversity conservation, forest restoration, agroecology and sustainable development.

Ingrid Pena is Master in Territorial Development and Public Policy, Specialist in Environmental Management, Bachelor in Tourism and Bachelor in Biological Sciences. She has experience in social-environmental researches and projects as consultant, researcher and tutor, with an interdisciplinary approach in the following areas: Public Policies and Environmental Management; Territorial Development and Protected Areas; Public Use in Conservation Units; Social Memory, Heritage and Tourism.

Fernanda Gomes holds a Master’s degree in Marketing Communication from the University of Westminster in England, a Bachelor in Social Communication, a Bachelor in Graphic Design, and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences. She has a diverse work experience in marketing communication agencies, large private companies and not-for-profit organizations in Brazil and the UK. As Communications Manager at IIS and the Centre for Conservation and Sustainability Science (CSRio), she develops communication strategies for scientific dissemination, and stakeholders´ engagement and behaviour change for conservation projects and initiatives.

fb icontwitter iconresearchgate icon