DOWNLOAD A COPY OF: “Living Water Smart in British Columbia: Communicating with Plain Language is a Guiding Principle,” released by the Partnership for Water Sustainability in September 2021


The edition of Waterbucket eNews published on January 26, 2021 featured the featured the story of Charles Axelsson and his doctoral research at the University of Venice. His PhD thesis is Adaptation through Policy: Climate Change induced Heavy Rainfall Events and Flash Flooding. By focusing on Metro Vancouver, New York City, Auckland, Sydney, Copenhagen, and Amsterdam he plans to capture a global picture of rainwater management and green infrastructure policy.

Communicating with Plain Language is a Guiding Principle

“NYC, Vancouver, Sydney, Auckland, Copenhagen and Amsterdam present differing narratives toward pluvial flooding,” reports Charles Axelsson. The European cities craft a unique policy narrative of being innovators and pioneers in rainfall management. They take a very intensive approach to stormwater management,” stated Charles Axelsson, a final year PhD candidate at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice studying the Science and Management of Climate Change.

Originally from Iceland, he grew up in NYC and Washington, D.C. before pursuing his undergraduate degree in Geography (BSc) at University College London. He continued with his masters in London in Environmental Technology (MSc) at Imperial College London. In November 2020, the first set of findings from his doctoral work were published in the Journal of Environmental Planning and Management.

Urban Policy Adaptation / Initial Findings

“The North American cities do not present a unified vision of stormwater management. Alongside efforts to incorporate sustainable and environmental management into the stormwater management network, NYC remains a large city of competing interests. On the other hand, Vancouver has embraced an image of environmental friendliness and constructs a narrative of rainfall management full of ‘green’ improvements.”

“In Australasia, the city management differences are reflected in the fundamental environmental problems; Sydney is too dry, and Auckland is too wet.”


To read the complete article, download a PDF copy of Living Water Smart in British Columbia: Communicating with Plain Language is a Guiding Principle.