'SWITCH - Sustainable Water Management Improves Tomorrow's Cities Health' has launched a 'Learning Alliance' to explore and promote integrated urban water management.

A Learning Alliance is a forum enabling local stakeholders to collaborate with researchers in order to find locally adapted state-of-the-art solutions for jointly shared problems. Within the framework of SWITCH, the Learning Alliances will work on prioritised water issues in order to achieve a more integrated approach in urban water management.

The Alliances will also reach out to stakeholders at national and regional levels to provide wider access to the new knowledge, know-how and experiences gained during the project.

The cities involved in Europe are: ICLEI member Zaragoza, Spain; Birmingham, UK; Hamburg, Germany; and Lodz, Poland. The other cities are Accra, Ghana; Alexandria, Egypt; Beijing, China; Belo Horizonte, Brazil - also ICLEI member - and Tel Aviv, Israel. The SWITCH consortium of some 30 partners is led by UNESCO-IHE and is partly financed by the European Commission, Directorate-General Research.