How does urban water governance build urban resilience to climate change and challenges of the future?

 You are kindly invited to join us at the international conference Water Governance in Cities, which will be held in Ptuj on Thursday, 17 October 2019, and organized by the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning RS , IPoP – Institute for Spatial Policies and the Association of Municipalities and towns of Slovenia.

The main topic at the conference will be how water governance builds urban resilience to climate change and future changes. We will present examples of local and international solutions and hold a discussion with representatives of Slovenian municipalities and guests about advanced organisational, planning and technical solutions for effective water governance and building urban resilience to climate change and future challenges.

Climate change is causing extreme weather phenomena to become more and more frequent. Slovenian cities have also been facing an increased number of heavy downpours and heat waves. The effect of these events on an urban environment and the lives of people depends significantly on how the urban landscape is managed, the proper stormwater drainage, how the urban spatial design retains and drains stormwater, how the hinterland-water is taken into account during construction and how well the inhabitants and other actors in the space are prepared for these events.

Urban resilience to climate change can be planned in advance. Cities all around the world are actively reacting to the climate change. They are developing water governance solutions with organizational as well as in technical measures, by applying any new improvements and exchanging experience with other cities. Ptuj will be the setting for the local and international knowledge exchange and will host guests with their stories from Bologna and Antwerp.


Attendance at the conference is free of charge, but please register for organisational purposes.

The event will be bilingual – in Slovenian and English with a simultaneous interpreter.



Conference report



Ronny Van Looveren, City of Antwerp

Ronny Van Looveren is Civil Hydraulic Engineer with more than 25 years of experience in the water domain. He started his career as a hydrological consultant in the private sector where he worked on all kind of solutions for flood and drought problems all over the world (Belgium; Italy, India, Senegal, Colombia, Vietnam, Namibia …). Since 3 years he works at the city of Antwerp as project leader on climate adaptation. Together with his colleagues and other stakeholders, it is his task to prepare the city of Antwerp to the impacts of climate change: higher rainfall intensities (and as a consequence increased flood risk), more frequent periods of drought and the increased impact of the urban heat island effect.  He is also active as a member of the WG Water in Eurocities.



Climate adaptation in the city of Antwerp: strategy and examples (with a focus on water resilience)

Climate adaptation is part of the climate plan of the city of Antwerp since 2015. Scientific research shows that, as a result of climate change, the city of Antwerp will be more vulnerable to heat stress, urban flooding, droughts and floods caused by the sea level rise. The main results of this research have been translated into different plans and pilot projects. This year the climate plan of the city is updated in co-creation with all relevant stakeholders.

Ronny Van Looveren will explain the main topics of the actual adaptation strategy and how it is being updated. He will also talk about the Antwerp Water Plan, our major plan on the integration of water in the public domain, and he will focus on some practical examples in our adaptation pilot projects.

Interreg Sponge 2020 project

Video about Interreg projektu Sponge 2020 project

URBACT network Resilient Europe


Giovanni Fini, City of Bologna

Giovanni Fini is a civil engineer and PhD in engineering and planning. He has worked for the City of Bologna since 1998 in various roles on environmental issues and urban planning. He coordinated the works for the definition of Local Adaptation Plan approved in 2015 and is now supporting the coordination of the European Urban Agenda partnership about Sustainable Land Use and Nature-Based Solutions. Has been an adjunct professor of design at the University of Bologna.




Water Governance in the Context of Climate Adaptation in Bologna

The City of Bologna adopted the Climate Adaptation Plan in 2015, which set the climate outline of the city. Through Life projects BLUEAP and RAINBO the city has been able to recognise the areas that are especially vulnerable to more and more frequent rainfall events and flash flooding. The aim of the city of Bologna is to reach a higher water resilience, by improving methods and tools to forecast severe rainfall events and their impact.

Giovanni Fini from the City of Bologna will explain more about the recent state of surface water management in Bologna, their strategic approach to higher water resilience and what are the gains of their cooperation with other cities and states in the EU.

More about Life BlueAp project
More about Life Rainbo project
Video about Life RainBo project


Graphics: Darja Klančar


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