Local efforts for climate change adaptation with limited resources: the Case of Kadıköy, Istanbul

Location Kadıköy, Istanbul, Turkey

Years 2022-2023

Director Ender Peker
BIAA, Middle East Technical University

Funding BIAA, Kadıköy Municipality

Research Summary

The ultimate aim of this research is to understand the experienced challenges derived from limited resources within the process of adaptation to climate change, particularly rainwater harvesting in Kadıköy Municipality.

Considering that district level local authorities have limited staff adequately trained for climate action and limited sources of knowledge and tools for enhancing adaptation to climate change, the research aims at filling this gap through an exploratory research supported with participatory methods. The research process will facilitate co-definition of the needs for overcoming the challenges derived from the limited resources. This will be followed by a capacity-building exercise designed to respond to the needs explored in research findings

The District Municipality of Kadıköy, as one of the pioneer municipalities in local climate action in Istanbul, has taken several initial actions for dealing with the risk of water scarcity. In order to generate alternative water resources, the municipality has applied rainwater harvesting methods in three different public buildings. These pilot applications were successful enough to provide eighty percent of the water used in the public services such as street cleaning in the district. However, as harvesting applications went into use in different types of buildings, new problems started to emerge in practice. In addition, those three pilot projects were designed and implemented by a group of experts that work under the directorate of the Climate Change and Zero-Waste Department. However, municipal staff working in different divisions, but having responsibilities regarding local climate action don’t have technical knowledge regarding harvesting systems.

Taking this as a point of departure, the director of the Climate Change and Zero-Waste Department asked for help to investigate how to fill the gaps of limited resources including staff, knowledge and tools to enable rainwater harvesting application on wider scales. They ask for help to investigate codes of practice for wider applications and also to increase the municipality’s internal knowledge flow, together with academics and experts. This opens a unique research area for the BIAA to investigate experienced challenges in translating knowledge of harvesting from theory to practice.

Research Director

Ender Peker

BIAA, Middle East Technical University

Akgün İlhan BIAA