Using transformative scenario planning to think critically about the future of water security in Bangalore
Bangalore's water situation is in crisis. There are several issues plaguing the city: declining groundwater levels, supply shortages, pollution and contamination of water bodies, frequent flooding of low lying settlements, encroachment of lakebeds, and storm water drains. Projected climate change impacts, such as an increased frequency of extreme events, indicate elevated levels of water stress, thus posing a challenge to the sustainability and liveability of the city. Finding solutions to these complex problems is above and beyond the scope and capacity of any one agency. It necessitates the involvement of all concerned stakeholders.
Transformative Scenario Planning (TSP) offers a useful way forward in addressing such complex, stuck issues. Developed by Reos Partners, TSP is a participatory process that engages with multiple concerned stakeholders, to create a shared understanding of what is happening in their system and what actions the stakeholder can, must and will take to address them. Structured around the development and use of scenarios, it provides a framework and language for strategic conversations within and across stakeholder groups.
The Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) convened the TSP process on the issue of water security in Bangalore in a series of three workshops over a period of 15 months from October 2016 until December 2018. It successfully brought together more than 60 relevant stakeholders to discuss diverse perspectives, contribute to an empathetic and inclusive conversation and build a shared understanding of the current and future situation
of water in the city.
This report summarises the main steps and ideas involved in the TSP workshops and the response strategies towards long-term collaborations.