Urban Nexus

Project // METABOLIC – Intelligent Urban Metabolic Systems for Green Cities of Tomorrow: an FWE Nexus-based Approach

This project will identify critical factors and define critical pathways of FWE delivery to urban centers using advanced tools such as artificial Intelligence, data mining, system dynamics modeling, agro-logistics and scenario analysis.

Food, Water and Energy (FWE) are essential nutrients of current growing urban centers to sustain vibrant operation and healthy urban metabolism. Our goal is to promote Green Urban Centers of Tomorrow by constructing e­ffective transport and exchange mechanisms for FWE nutrients from sources to urban centers, quantifying and optimizing the FWE factors related to societal health. E­ffective management of urban metabolisms is the key to the health of our urban centers of tomorrow. To ensure a feasible work plan, we will establish direct engagement of the relevant stakeholders in participating countries. Our underlying rationale is that the FWE Nexus, manifesting as a complex supply- chain network, forms the basis of the urban metabolic system that sustains the development of our urban centers.


  • Investigate urban metabolism from FEW Nexus aspect
  • Incorporate advanced tools and models into a scientific collaboration framework
  • Propose FWE Nexus governance strategies
  • Develop an international FWE Nexus capacity building system


  • Identify critical FWE factors and delivery pathways to urban centers via AI, datamining, system dynamics, agro-logistics and scenario analysis
  • Find intertwined nature of FWE lifecycles from production, processing, delivery, consumption to disposal

Expected results and impacts

  • Develop better reallocation schemes, management strategies and solutions at FWE Nexus level
  • Propose virtual resource center for transdisciplinary training to share strategies, raise
    public awareness and build capacity in FEW Nexus

Project partners

National Taiwan University (NTU), Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, University of Illinois, Qatar University, University of Sao Paulo, Sunny Rich Power Co.



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Modelling and Assessment

Publication // Sustainability Indicators and Indices for the Water-Energy-Food Nexus for Performance Assessment: WEF Nexus in Practice – South Africa Case Study

By Nhamo, L., Mabhaudhi, T., Mpandeli, S., Nhemachena, C., Senzanje, A., Naidoo, D., Liphadzi, S. & Modi, A. T. (2019). This paper develops a methodology for indices able to display WEF Nexus performance, monitoring and evaluation, using South Africa as an example.

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Fact Sheets

Nexus Fact Sheet // Frexus: Améliorer la sécurité et la résilience au changement climatique dans les contextes fragiles à travers le Nexus Eau-Energie - Sécurité Alimentaire

L'objectif de le projet FREXUS, qui est centré sur la région du Sahel, est de fournir des outils adéquats pour relever ces défis, éviter leurs conséquences négatives (telles que la concurrence et les conflits pour les ressources) et ouvrir des portes vers des opportunités pour le développement durable.

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Fact Sheets

Nexus Fact Sheet // Frexus: Improving security and climate resilience in a fragile context through the Water-Energy-Food Security Nexus

With the FREXUS project, is aimed to improve security and climate resilience in a fragile context through the Water-Energy and Food Security Nexus (Frexus), in Mali, Niger and Chad. The objective is to increase peace and stability in areas where resource conflict is exacerbated by climate change.

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