Water Global Practice of the World Bank
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Fields of Specialization
WATER RESOURCES, DAMS AND DEVELOPMENT, TRANSBOUNDARY WATERWAY GOVERNANCE
Water Global Practice of the World Bank
Externally Hosted Work
Last updated January 31, 2023
Dr. Marcus Wishart is a Lead Water Resource Specialist with the World Bank Group. He has over 25 years of experience working in more than 20 countries across Asia and the Pacific, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. Marcus co-leads the World Bank’s global program on enhancing the safety and resilience of dams and downstream communities and specializes in innovative solutions to complex problems relating to the development of large hydraulic infrastructure and risk informed approaches to decision making under uncertainty. He has led a number of diverse, multi-disciplinary teams through complex infrastructure projects and advises on institutional and policy issues relating to the management and sustainable development of water resources. Marcus holds a PhD from Griffith University in Australia, an MSc from the University of Cape Town in South Africa and a BSc with Honours from the University of Adelaide, and has published over 100 academic papers, books and reports on a range of infrastructure and water related topics.
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 6 of 6
The Gray, Green, Blue Continuum: Valuing the Benefit of Nature-Based Solutions for Integrated Urban Flood Management in China(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021) Wishart, Marcus ; Wong, Tony ; Furmage, Ben ; Liao, Xiawei ; Pannell, David ; Wang, JianbinSuch solutions have the potential to integrate natural habitats, processes, and services as part of a coherent and holistic approach to water management, particularly in the urban context. They can provide multiple functions beyond conventional flood mitigation, generating a range of benefits by restoring and conserving natural capital, improving the live ability of urban spaces, increasing resilience, and contributing to more sustainable outcomes. In doing so, they can enhance overall water security by improving water availability and water quality while simultaneously reducing water-related risks and generating additional social, economic, and environmental co-benefits. Achieving these outcomes requires hybrid urban infrastructure city-wide. Such infrastructure optimizes a mix of blue, green, and gray corridors that can integrate NbS into the built urban form at a range of scales and in varying proportions. While the design and implementation of these hybrid assets are relatively well considered, their implementation at scale has been limited. This is due in part to the challenges in realizing the values associated with the full range of market and non-market benefits and comprehending the distribution of these among diverse beneficiaries. This situation makes it difficult to secure sustainable revenue streams and to internalize future returns that can be aggregated to leverage sufficient financing. As a result, improved approaches are required to identify the benefits derived from NbS, evaluate the value of these benefits and to identify the range of potential beneficiaries, to provide a framework that can facilitate co-investment in hybrid infrastructure and ultimately suitable financing models.
Valuing the Benefits of Nature-Based Solutions: A Manual for Integrated Urban Flood Management in China(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021) Wishart, Marcus ; Wong, Tony ; Furmage, Ben ; Liao, Xiawei ; Pannell, David ; Wang, JianbinFloods are the most frequent of all-natural hazards and responsible for causing more damages than any other disasters. Globally, floods are estimated to have affected more than 2 billion people between 1998 and 2018, accounting for 45 percent of all people affected by disasters during that period with an estimated 142,088 fatalities. The immediate impacts of flooding include the loss of human life, livelihoods, damage to property, destruction of crops, loss of livestock, disruption of services, and deterioration of health conditions owing to waterborne diseases, among others. The direct economic losses caused by flooding over the last decade are estimated at US656 billion dollars, although these are systematically under-reported and actual values are likely much higher. When accounting for intangible impacts on human well-being, natural disasters are thought to cost the global economy more than US520 billion dollars a year. This report outlines a comprehensive framework for valuing the benefits associated with NbS for IUFM to facilitate the identification of appropriate and sustainable financing mechanisms to realize those values. Traditional approaches of assessing the benefits of urban flood management have been focused on avoided losses due to reductions in the probability of flooding. A benefit to this approach is that it is simple to calculate and to explain to decision makers. It can also provide information regarding the optimal level of flood risk reduction associated to the direct intervention cost. However, such traditional approaches do not reflect the full range of social, environmental and economic benefits that can be realized by NbS for IUFM. Broader recognition of these benefits, and an evaluation of their value under different circumstances, provides the foundation for capturing non-market values and leveraging private sector and community financing options. The approach described herein builds on the ‘Principles for Valuing Water’ articulated by the High-Level Panel on Water convened by the United Nations and the World Bank Group and includes three common types of flooding (i.e. fluvial, pluvial and coastal) through a five step process.
Appropriate Groundwater Management Policy for Sub-Saharan Africa: In Face of Demographic Pressure and Climatic Variability(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2011) Tuinhof, Albert ; Foster, Stephen ; van Steenbergen, Frank ; Talbi, Amal ; Wishart, MarcusThis paper provides an overview of major groundwater issues for Sub-Saharan Africa, with an assessment of their policy implications in terms of potential development and appropriate management. In terms of construction time, capital outlay and drought resilience, groundwater is the preferred source to meet most water-supply demands, despite hydro geological complexity, natural constraints on water well yields and quality, and institutional weaknesses. The 'new developmental agenda' relates to improving urban water-supply security and expanding irrigated agriculture to meet these challenges many countries need to undertake strategic assessment of their groundwater and prioritize investment on institutional strengthening so as to facilitate appropriately-managed groundwater development. Without effective use of available groundwater resources, improved livelihoods and climate-change adaptation will prove much more difficult to achieve.
Laying the Foundations: Essential Elements for Assuring the Safety of Dams and Downstream Communities(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-07-16) Wishart, Marcus J. ; Ueda, Satoru ; Pisaniello, John D. ; Tingey-Holyoak, Joanne L. ; Lyon, Kimberly N. ; Boj Garcia, EstebanAssuring the safety of dams is central to protecting downstream communities, infrastructure, and the environment. Dam safety is also important for securing water for productive purposes and sustaining economic development. With a global portfolio of more than 58,000 large dams, issues associated with the safety of dams and downstream communities are becoming increasingly important, particularly given aging infrastructure, increasing downstream populations, shifting demographics, and changes in climate and weather patterns. The foundation for effective dam safety assurance is an appropriate and well-designed regulatory framework that captures the legal, institutional, technical, and financial elements in the reality of a particular jurisdiction. Establishing and maintaining a regulatory framework that is fit for purpose is, therefore, necessary for ensuring the quality of dam design, construction, and operation and maintenance. The framework also ensures that safety measures are reflective of the risks inherent in managing these structures and the context in which they are developed. Such frameworks need to be developed as part of a holistic strategy for water management that is integrated in basin and regional planning processes. The objective of this policy note is to provide guidance to policy makers and practitioners on the essential elements for establishing regulatory regimes for assuring the safety of dams and downstream communities.
Laying the Foundations: Decision Support Tool to Inform and Assess Regulatory Frameworks for Dam Safety Assurance(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022) Wishart, Marcus J. ; Ueda, Satoru ; Pisaniello, John ; Tingey-Holyoak, Joanne L. ; Lyon, Kimberly N. ; Boj Garcia, EstebanThe foundation for effective dam safety assurance is an appropriate and well-designed regulatory framework that captures the legal, institutional, technical, and financial elements in the reality of a particular jurisdiction. Aging infrastructure, diminishing returns on new projects, changes in climate and weather patterns, and shifting trends of human settlement require ever-increasing attention in the effort to ensure the safety of dams and downstream communities. Establishing and maintaining a regulatory framework that is fit for purpose is, therefore, necessary for assuring the quality of dam design, construction, and operations. The framework also ensures that safety measures are reflective of the risks inherent in managing these structures and the context in which they are developed. Such frameworks need to be developed as part of a holistic strategy for water management that is integrated in basin and regional planning processes. The purpose of this Decision Support Tool is to guide countries and jurisdictions through various considerations in designing and updating their regulatory environment for dam safety assurance. This Decision Support Tool aggregates information derived from a comprehensive review and comparative analysis of regulatory frameworks in 51 countries. It presents a typology of situations that correlate with regulatory framework options along a continuum from minimum to maximum assurance of safety. It then presents hypothetical examples of how the Decision Support Tool can be used by countries and jurisdictions to assess their own situations and which regulatory options may be appropriate to consider for improving dam safety assurance.
Laying the Foundations: A Global Analysis of Regulatory Frameworks for the Safety of Dams and Downstream Communities(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2020-11-19) Wishart, Marcus J. ; Ueda, Satoru ; Pisaniello, John D. ; Tingey-Holyoak, Joanne L. ; Lyon, Kimberly N. ; Boj García, EstebanDam safety is central to public protection and economic security. However, the world has an aging portfolio of large dams, with growing downstream populations and rapid urbanization placing dual pressures on these important infrastructures to provide increased services and to do it more safely. To meet the challenge, countries need legal and institutional frameworks that are fit for purpose and can ensure the safety of dams. Such frameworks enable dams to provide water supplies to meet domestic and industrial demands, support power generation, improve food security, and bolster resilience to floods and droughts, helping to build safer communities. Laying the Foundations: A Global Analysis of Regulatory Frameworks for the Safety of Dams and Downstream Communities is a systematic review of dam regimes from a diverse set of 51 countries with varying economic, political, and cultural circumstances. These case studies inform a continuum of legal, institutional, technical, and financial options for sustainable dam safety assurance. The findings from the comparative analysis will inform decisionmakers about the merits of different options for dam safety and help them systematically develop the most effective approaches for the country context. By identifying the essential elements of good practices guided by portfolio characteristics, this tool can help identify gaps in existing legal, institutional, technical, and financial frameworks to enhance the regulatory regime for ensuring the safety of dams and downstream communities.