Making Urban Water Management Tangible for the Public by Means of Digital Solutions
Stein, U., Bueb, B., Bouleau, G. and Rouillé-Kielo, G. (2023). Making Urban Water Management Tangible for the Public by Means of Digital Solutions. Sustainability, [online] 15(2), p.1280. doi:10.3390/su15021280.
In water management, digital solutions are increasingly deployed to support decision-making and automatize processes. These solutions have a high potential to promote the sustainability of water management and related fields, and thus to contribute to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Simultaneously, more and more digital solutions focus on increasing public awareness of specific urban water management issues, like water pollution or groundwater abstraction. So far, however, evidence is limited on the relevance and effectiveness of these digital solutions. Also, there is only little research on the effect of the governance settings on the potential of such solutions to raise awareness about the underlying water management aspects.
This article written by Dr. Ulf Stein and Benedict Bueb from Ecologic Institute together with researchers of the French National Institute of Agricultural Research (INRAE) presents insights of two case studies, in Paris and Berlin, which investigated the potential of two mobile applications to make urban water management visible to the public and thus increase awareness about certain water management aspects.
The article hypothesizes that such apps can contribute to a shift in problem perception of a specific water management issue and, in doing so, influence the public discourse on that topic. In the long term, this has the potential to change practices in urban water management.