Strategies for Resilience



It is too easy to blame today’s water problems on climate change. While it is clear that climate impacts are having real consequences on water systems, it is less clear the problems described in earlier chapters would not have occurred without climate change. Global water systems are under increasing stress from the failure to adapt to changing diets, housing and gardening preferences, energy demands, technological change, economic development patterns, and climate change. Predict-and-plan management systems are no longer appropriate in an era of rapid change. This book offers a new way of conceptualizing water problems that embraces uncertainty, seeks to design a more sustainable future, searches for robust solutions, and builds social institutions to promote social learning. This chapter outlines strategies for uncertain water futures.


  1. Alverez, Lisette. 2017. “Despite Rising Seas and Bigger Storms, Florida’s Land Rush Endures.” New York Times, September 18 2017.Google Scholar
  2. Grabo, Cynthia M. 2002. “Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning.” Washington, DC: US Defense Intelligence Agency. Accessed September 24 2017.
  3. Moss, Richard H., Karen Fisher-Vanden, Alison Delgado, Scott Backhaus, Christopher L. Barrett, Bhaduri, Budhendra, Ian P. Kracunas, Patrick M. Reed, Jennie S. Rice, Ian Sue Wing, and Claudia Tebaldi. 2016. “Understanding Dynamics and Resilience in Complex Interdependent Systems: Prospects for a Multi-Model Framework and Community of Practice.” Report of a workshop held under the auspices of the US Global Change Research Program. Accessed September 12 2017.
  4. Ostrom, Elinor. 1990. Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Sivapalan, Murugesu, Hubert H. G. Savenije, and Gunter Blösch. 2012. “Socio-hydrology: A New Science of People and Water.” Hydrological Processes 26(2): 1270–1276.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Trenberth, Kevin. 2010. “More Knowledge less Certainty,” Nature Reports Climate Change 4(February): 20–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Whoriskey, Peter and Patricia Sullivan. 2017. “Residents of Flood Weary Houston Neighborhoods Wonder if Rebuilding Is Worth It.” Washington Post, September 14 2017.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Geographical Sciences and Urban PlanningArizona State UniversityTempeUSA

Personalised recommendations