GCRF-ESRC funding success to explore access to the essential services of water, sanitation and energy in areas of rapid population growth and informal settlements.

Professor Guy Howard in collaboration with Professor Kate Robson Brown, Dr Jitendra Agarwal, Dr Maria Pregnolato, Dr Sam Williamson and colleagues from external partners will receive £1.7M for the project “Beyond the networked city: building innovative delivery systems for water, sanitation and energy in urban Africa”

The vision for this project is to develop and test in two African cities a mixed economy model of on-grid and off-grid systems to deliver water, sanitation and energy services to marginalised people.. Central to their thinking is that both on-grid and off-grid systems should provide users with the same safety and adequacy of service.

Professor Robson Brown will be involved in geospatial analysis of the urban settlements, mapping current access, future development and assessing hazards and risks, using official data sources as well as land-use, topographical maps and high resolution remotely sensed data to produce detailed maps of current coverage with on and off-grid water, sanitation and energy services. This will input into the analysis and overall assessment of service development.

Professor Robson Brown said: ‘The importance of access to clean water and sanitation, and affordable and clean energy, is enshrined in SDG 6 and 7. This project will harness the power of data science to predict risk to urban development and service delivery in Africa, and it is a privilege to be part of such a multidisciplinary and international team working to improves the lives of people in rapidly growing cities.’

We will keep you updated on the project achievements on our blog pages.