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The Water and Territory research group and the Interuniversity Institute of Geography will develop the SIMTWIST European Project financed by the Water JPI 2018 call

The 2018 call of the Water Joint Programming Initiative (JPI), Closing the water cycle gap, has selected the SIMTWIST project (Simulating tourism water consumption with stakeholders), in which the Water and Territory research group, linked to the Interuniversity Institute of Geography from the University of Alicante (Spain), participates. SIMTWIST is coordinated by the Environmental Systems Analysis research group from the Wageningen University (The Netherlands). The third partner of the consortium is the Department of Civil, Chemical, Environmental, and Materials Engineering, from the University of Bologna (Italy).

The project’s general objective is to improve the understanding of the tourism water footprint and to help reduce tourism stakeholders’ contributions to water scarcity in tourism destinations by informing public and private decision-makers about the effectiveness of different types of interventions. The emphasis on water scarcity necessitates the consideration of both water supply and demand. This action endeavours to connect water scarcity, a macro-level problem, with the micro-level behaviour of individual tourism stakeholders. The stakeholders addressed by the project include tourists, tourism accommodations and other tourism-related businesses, water utilities, and policy makers. The proposal is novel in two ways. On the one hand, the proposal goes beyond the traditional system-level statistical relationships between tourism water consumption and determinants such as accommodations’ numbers of rooms, quality levels and amenities provided. It dives deeper, taking account of perceptions, attitudes, cultural backgrounds, and other individual and social drivers that, in combination with climatic factors, influence individual actors’ water use behaviour. To this end, the project uses the novel hydrosocial cycle approach, which connects the physical sphere of water flows with the social spheres of power and institutions. On the second hand, the proposal will develop and apply an Agent-Based Model (ABM) to explore the effects of a wide range of assumptions, future scenarios and possible (policy) interventions, in this case aimed at achieving local adaptation measures on climate change and water efficiency. Both methods will be applied on Benidorm and Rimini case studies.

The Water JPI 2018 Closing the Water Cycle Gap Call aims to enable transnational, collaborative research, development and innovation projects addressing questions relating to society’s water challenges. The call is Water JPI’s fifth, and the call consortium includes 20 funding agencies from 18 countries. The total budget is 19 000 000 euro.

Interuniversity Institute of Geography (Alicante)


Universidad de Alicante
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