The Water as Leverage Programme
The Water as Leverage programme was initiated in 2018 with a competition to generate innovative and integrated climate-adaptive concepts in three Asian cities.
The competition was modeled after the Rebuild by Design challenge launched in June 2013 by President Obama’s Hurricane Sandy Task Force. The WaL programme builds upon the success of RBD and contributes to the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. The three cities where Water as Leverage piloted its programming - Semarang, Indonesia; Chennai, India; and Khulna, Bangladesh - are pioneering a transformative design approach with the goal of replicating these principles in Asia and across the rest of the world. The initiative involves a dedicated group of partners from governments, financial institutions, investment agencies, technical organizations together with community stakeholders who are committed to using Water as Leverage as a blueprint for other cities and regions facing water challenges.
In short, Water as Leverage:
- ensures the active involvement of all stakeholders – local communities, the public, private and financial sectors – from the start;
- promotes coalitions, creates ownership and enhances institutional and societal capacity in building climate-resilient cities;
- develops design-driven, fundable infrastructural projects to address urban challenges and to create a better living environment in cities; and
- inspires paradigm shifts as the programme contributes to changing the thinking and the perspective on different processes and the funding needed to deal with the complexity of urban challenges.
Water as Leverage is supported by MOUs between the Dutch government and the Governments of Bangladesh, India and Indonesia.