Project Profile: Waterproofing Data

Waterproofing Data: Engaging Stakeholders in Sustainable Flood Risk Governance for Urban Resilience


Principal Investigators: Joao Porto de Albuquerque, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Partners: Maria Alexandria Viegas Cortez da Cunha, Fundacao Getulio Varga, Brazil
Alezander Zipf, Heidelberg University, Germany
Nathaniel Tkacz, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Nerea Calvillo, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Joanne Garde-Hansen, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Jon Coaffee, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
Marlei Pozzebon, Fundacao Getulio Vargas, Brazil
Rachel Trajber, National Early Warning and Monitoring Centre for Natural Disasters, Brazil
Sponsors: São Paulo Research Foundation, Brazil
Federal Ministry of Education and Research, Germany
Economic and Social Research Council, United Kingdom


Full Project Title: Waterproofing Data: Engaging Stakeholders in Sustainable Flood Risk Governance for Urban Resilience
Full Call Title: T2S2016


Project Objective: Waterproofing Data investigates the governance of water-related risks, with a focus on social and cultural aspects of data practices. Typically, data flows up from local levels to scientific "centres of expertise", and then flood-related alerts and interventions flow back down through local governments and into communities. Rethinking how flood-related data is produced, and how it flows, can help build sustainable, flood resilient communities. To this end, this project develops three innovative methods around data practices, across different sites and scales:

1) we will make visible existing flows of flood-related data through tracing data;
2) generate new types of data at the local level by engaging citizens through the creation of multi-modal interfaces, which sense, collect and communicate flood data, and;
3) integrate citizen-generated data with other data using geo-computational techniques.

These methodological interventions will transform how flood-related data is produced and flows, creating new governance arrangements between citizens, governments and flood experts and, ultimately, increased community resilience related to floods in vulnerable communities of Sao Paulo and Acre, Brazil. The project will be conducted by a highly skilled international team of researchers with multiple disciplinary backgrounds from Brazil, Germany and the UK, in close partnership with researchers, stakeholders and publics of a multi-site case study on flood risk management in Brazil. Furthermore, the methods and results of this case study will be the basis for a transcultural dialogue with government organisations and local administration involved in flood risk management in Germany and the United Kingdom.
Call Objective: T2S has two major objectives:

To develop understanding of and promote research on transformations to sustainability which are of significant social, economic and policy concern throughout the world and of great relevance to both academics and stakeholders;

To build capacity, overcome fragmentation and have a lasting impact on both society and the research landscape by cultivating durable research collaboration across multiple borders, disciplinary boundaries, and with practitioners and societal partners. This includes facilitating the development of new research collaborations with parts of the world which are not often involved in large-scale international research efforts, notably low- and middle-income countries.


Regions: Europe, South America
Countries: Brazil, Germany, United Kingdom


Duration: 49 months
Call Date: July 6, 2017
Project Award Date: April 26, 2018