Institute for Technology Assessment and  Systems Analysis (ITAS)

Increasing water availability in arid areas: a method to assess the impacts and adaptability of different technologies for sustainable adaptation. A case of study in northern Chile: Arica

Project description

Arid areas pose a challenge for water management: low water availability forces decision makers to work in contexts of overstressed water resources, with the already existing social, environmental, and economic conflicts and the general problems of sustainable development.

Seawater desalination and wastewater reuse are two of the most common paths to increase water availability for human consumption. Nevertheless, they present new challenges such as (a) the distribution of costs and benefits of the “new” resources among different users, (b) the environmental impact of waste disposal, and (c) the legal framework needed to regulate water use and management. Decision makers need to understand and address these challenges if these technologies are to provide sustainable long-term solutions.

This doctoral project aims to contribute to the sustainable development of arid areas by supporting decision making. For this, a decision support method will be developed. This is based on the selection and adaptation of relevant indicators that make it possible to assess the impact of different water technologies on the development of a territory using long-term scenarios. The city of Arica (Chile) serves as a case study.

Administrative data

Supervisor: Prof. Harald Horn, Prof. Armin Grunwald
Advisor: Dr. Helmut Lehn, Dr. Florencia Saravia
Doctoral students at ITAS: See Doctoral studies at ITAS


Dámare Araya Valenzuela
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Institute for Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS)
P.O. Box 3640
76021 Karlsruhe

Tel.: +49 721 608-26541