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The project aims at developing innovative methodologies to facilitate the design of policies and bridge knowledge and technology gaps in the field of the water-land-food-energy-climate Nexus under climate change conditions. SIM4NEXUS will develop a methodology of integration using a complexity science approach and a Serious Game, as an integrating tool for testing and evaluating policy decisions. The Serious Game will be operable at different scales ranging from regional to national, to continental, to global, as well as at different time horizons—short, medium and long-term.

Time period:

Until May 2020

Project partners:

The 25 partners of SIM4NEXUS are from 15 countries (NL, EL, UK, DE, ES, IT, JP, SE, CZ, DK, FR, AT, LV, AZ and BE), namely: Wageningen UR, NL; University of Thessaly, EL; University of Exeter, UK; Stichting IHE Delft, NL; Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung, DE; Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, ES; Bocconi University, IT; United Nations University /Bonn, JP; University of Cambridge, UK; KTH Royal Institute of Technology, SE; Uppsala University, SE; Eurecat, ES; University of Sassari, IT; ENKI, CZ; Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, NL; DHI Group, DK; South West Water, UK; ACTeon, FR; Epsilon Malta Limited, MT; Cambridge Econometrics, UK; Strane Innovation, FR; Fresh Thoughts, AT; Baltic Environmental Forum Latvia, LV; People & Water, SK; Water and Sanitation Technology Platform, BE.


SIM4NEXUS, acronym for Sustainable Integrated Management FOR the NEXUS of water-land-food-energy-climate for a resource-efficient Europe, is a H2020 project which proposal was submitted to the Water call, under the topic for integrated approaches to food security, low-carbon energy, sustainable water management and climate change mitigation. With a budget of nearly 8 M€, the project started in June 2016 and extend over a period of 48 months. The consortium includes 25 partners and is led by Wageningen UR, from The Netherlands.

Aim and objectives

Objective 1. To adopt existing knowledge and develop new expertise on the Nexus to support the goals of the EU 2020 vision1 for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, including resource efficiency objectives and other water-related policy objectives in the EU, by testing improvements in resource efficiency and low-carbon energy use. Pathways for achieving the 2050 vision will be identified, while scientifically sound projections beyond 2050 are also made. The extent of reaching objectives and expected impacts will be assessed via the use of relevant Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

Objective 2. To use advanced integration methodologies based on Complexity Science approaches in order to bridge the knowledge gap related to the complex interactions among all components in the water-land-food-energy-climate Nexus and to reduce uncertainties of how policies, governance and institutions affect complex changing environmental systems and what their impacts are on resources.

Objective 3. To showcase the implementation of the SIM4NEXUS methodology, by using a network of regional and national case studies in Europe as a test bed for achieving resource efficiency through successful policy initiatives. In this context, SIM4NEXUS aims to address the barriers of expanding the use of the Serious Game by end-users and policy-makers.

Objective 4. To implement a business plan in order to valorise the project outputs (Complexity Science Nexus integration tools, Serious Game, Knowledge Elicitation Engine) by creating project spinoffs. SIM4NEXUS aims to offer a long-lasting, economically sustainable exploitation of its results, including an Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) legal framework for the partners and a mechanism aimed at encouraging and accepting new partnerships in the years to come (e.g., via a European Economic Interest Grouping—EEIG).

Project contact persons

Project Leader

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