GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE IN INTEGRATED URBAN WATER MANAGEMENT: MODELING AND SOCIAL-ECOLOGICAL SYSTEM APPROACHES
Pavao-Zuckerman, Mitchell Adam
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Urbanization, climate change, increasing water demand, deteriorating water quality, and insufficiencies in system resilience have encouraged city planners to consider integrated urban water management (IUWM) as a solution. One of the main benefits of IUWM is looking into stormwater as a resource to decrease the need for potable water and put less burden on wastewater treatment systems and the environment. Green infrastructure (GI) is an essential part of stormwater management that is designed to mimic the natural hydrological cycle and allows for infiltration, capture and reuse, and treatment of stormwater. This dissertation is designed to inform urban water decision-makers with a special focus on GI via assessment and management frameworks and stakeholder engagement. In my first study, I provided a comparative study of IUWM models aimed at assisting users to select the most appropriate model according to any specific needs. Our results showed that most of IUWM models included stormwater management and GI selection, but do not consider ecosystem services evaluation and the supply and demand from GI. Following these deficiencies of the available models, in my second study, I looked into the stakeholders’ knowledge, perception, and practice of GI with respect to ecosystem services supply and demand. The results showed the study of supply and demand, as well as ecosystem disservices, can help the selection of effective forms of GI to address the priority of stakeholders and environmental issues. Selection of the right type of GI is important for the sustainability of GI in providing ecosystem services, but so is monitoring and evaluation of GI. Thus, my third study focused on developing a generalized social-ecological framework for assessing urban stormwater GI resilience. The results of this study showed that assessing resilience requires linking indicators to critical functionality of GI, as well as a social-ecological approach that goes beyond design and technical specifications. This study can help prioritize resources to address goals related to building resilience. In my last study, I aimed to refine and co-produce a specific social-ecological framework for stormwater GI resilience with stakeholders that links to perceived barriers and challenges of implementing GI. Stakeholders co-created indicators considering current GI challenges and linked them with resilience management dimensions. This framework could inform the management of adverse events and improve resilience by decision-makers and multi-stakeholders in various sectors related to GI planning, design, and implementation.