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Deltares and NUS partner to address challenges in urban resilience

Dutch applied research institute Deltares and the National University of Singapore (NUS) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to explore the development of a new Singapore Centre on Urban Resilience (SeCURE). The Centre aims to contribute to solving urban resilience challenges for Southeast Asia cities, such as climate change induced flooding and drought.

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A unique collaboration

The NUSDeltares Alliance brings together the best minds from two leading institutions — the National University of Singapore and leading Dutch applied research institute Deltares — to address some of the most pressing water and soil issues confronting the world today. In view of the challenges that most Asian mega-cities and urbanizing deltas are facing we focus on three interconnected areas, specifically Climate Adaptation, High Density Living and Urban Water Management.

As a knowledge alliance, we collaborate with Asian universities, corporations and governments and offer high-impact contract research, training and specialist consultancy services. Our aim is to help governments, businesses and communities make vital decisions on these important issues.

From our Singapore base, we are well placed to work across the ASEAN region and beyond.

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The water- and soil related expertise of NUS and Deltares covers a wide area. This enables us to do research, provide training and give specialist advice with respect to infrastructure, environment, flood risk, resource management, integrated planning, and policy support. But we have chosen to concentrate our strategic cooperation on the following three topics:

Climate adaptation

Climate change is expected to have significant impacts on communities in the medium to long term, but the magnitude of these impacts remains difficult to predict. Adaptation strategies that may appear obvious under present climate conditions could become irrelevant if these conditions change. There are numerous uncertainties involved, and with them, risks of over- or under-investing. It is therefore crucial to be able to predict climate related impacts, to understand and reduce uncertainties, and to develop cost-effective strategies to minimize these risks.

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High density living

Land has always been a precious resource in South East Asian cities, particularly in Singapore. Within the field of research of High Density Living, several aspects need to be addressed in more detail. In particular, these are the sustainable management of resources such as water, energy and food supply; blue green infrastructure for healthy and liveable cities; land subsidence and groundwater abstraction; and compact urban planning and design.

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Urban water management

Cities in Southwest Asia are among the fastest growing in the world. Population growth, economic development and climate change result in multiple challenges for urban water management. The available water resources are under increasing pressure. The demand for space to store water is growing, both to prevent urban flooding in times of heavy rainfall and as strategic storage capacity in times of drought.

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