Integrated water resources management

The link between water resources and land use goes beyond the mere conception of some activities as extractive water users. Terrestrial ecosystems interact heavily with the land water cycle by mediating in the partition of rainfall water into green- and blue-water flows. The full land-water cycle, therefore, can be explicitly considered in water resources planning and management, constituting a new paradigm.

Collaborative approach

The underlying causes of land and water challenges in the EUM region are rooted in complex socio-cultural, economic and political contexts. For instance, farmers are not only concerned with productivity enhancement, but also with risk reduction and sustainability of crop production. Integrated approaches require thus greater involvement of different types of stakeholders.

Managing water resources

Water resources are over-exploited to a large part in the EU Mediterranean region, and water is expected to become scarcer due to climate change and increasing water demand, while changes in land use exert additional stress.


Irrigated agriculture is a major blue-water consumer in downstream areas of catchments, and improving crop water productivity is  a major objective. This may be achieved by better crop rotation planning or other management options such as controlled deficit irrigation.


Forest management options such as thinning forest plantations can enhance groundwater infiltration and surface runoff, thus increasing the production of blue-water at the catchment scale while optimizing water productivity at the stand scale.

Promoting a wider perception of water resources

Fostering the links between land and water

Addressing water scarcity issues in the EU Mediterranean

INNOMED - Innovative options for water resources management in the Mediterranean
A 36-months research project co-funded under the ERA-NET WaterWorks2015 Call of the European Commission. INNOMED aims to develop and apply a multidisciplinary approach to quantify the physical and economic effects of alternative management options in forestry and agriculture on the catchment's water balance. The INNOMED project brings together partners from Spain (CSIC), Cyprus (CyI), Italy (POLIMI and CNR-ISAFOM), Portugal (NOVA.ID.FCT), France (CIRAD-UMR-CIRED) and Moldova (RIFC).
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Case studies


Monte Novo, Vigia and Espor√£o reservoir catchments


Alto Aragón water regulation system


Bonis catchment in the Sila Plateau, Calabria


Peristerona River catchment


Balti steppe farms

Experimental farms and research forest areas

Experimental farms and forest areas

The INNOMED approach

Catchment-wide water balance analysis

Eco-hydrological numeric modelling to determine the blue- and green-water footprint of current and alternative land managements.

Economic modelling

Catchment-wide economic valuation of green- and blue-water resources to assess the feasibility of different management options.

Monitoring schemes and indicators

Field monitoring of key aspects of the land water cycle to address challenging modelling issues.

Focus on agriculture and forestry

Focus on agriculture and forestry and their role on shaping water resources.

Water conserving practices

Controlled deficit irrigation field trials and isotopic tree-ring analysis to determine the water productivity of different management options.

Collaborative learning

Close collaboration with stakeholders in the selected areas since the early stages of the project.

The team

Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas

Centre de coopération internationale en recherche agronomique pour le développement

Research Institute of Field Crops “Selectia”

Research Institute of Field Crops “Selectia” (RIFC), Moldova

Politecnico di Milano

Universidade Nova de Lisboa

The Cyprus Institute


  Download you preferred version of the INNOMED flyer (there are version in English, Romanian, Russian, Greek, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and soon in French, too), or contact us if you want a printed copy. INNOMED_flyer_EN INNOMED_flyer_GR INNOMED_flyer_RO INNOMED_flyer_RU INNOMED_flyer_ES INNOMED_flyer_PT INNOMED_flyer_IT

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Plenary meeting and field visit in Balti, Moldova

  During the days 19th to 21st of June we had our first annual meeting of the INNOMED project, organised by Prof. Boris Boincean and Dr. Marin Cebotari from the Selectia Research Institute of Field Crops. The meeting was hosted by the¬†Alecu Russo Balti State University. There is a close collaboration between the two institutions, since Selectia opened the Chair of Agro-ecology in 2003. This allows researchers from Selectia to be involved in the education activities, and at the same…

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Peach orchard field trial, Spain

  A field trial experiment has been started in the framework of INNOMED in the experimental fields of the Aula Dei experimental station (EEAD-CSIC) in Zaragoza, Spain. The purpose of this experiment is to improve our understanding of the effects of deficit irrigation on fruit production and quality parameters. The experiment has been set up in a pre-existing peach tree orchard with trees of the Extreme July variety. Full irrigation up to 100% of the theoretical requirements will be applied…

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Stakeholders meeting in Italy

  An INNOMED stakeholders meeting was organized by the Italian partners (CNR-ISAFOM and POLIMI) on May 17th 2018 at the Bonis catchment case-study, in the Calabria region (southern Italy). The stakeholders meeting was attended by two leading institutions in the region, the Multi-Risk Functional Centre of the Regional Agency for Environment Protection of the Calabria region and the Basin Authority of Calabria. Short summary of workshop activities The activities have been divided in three steps. First there was a plenary…

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INNOMED is hiring!

  We are happy to announce a three-year postdoctoral Research Assistant position within the INNOMED project. The position¬†is currently open in the Erosion and Soil and Water Evaluation (EESA) lab at Estaci√≥n Experimental de Aula Dei (EEAD-CSIC) in Zaragoza (Spain), with an immediately available start date. The net salary amounts to (around) 35,700 ‚ā¨ per year. [Edit: This position is no longer open.] The applicant filling this position is expected to actively advance research on projects related to numerical simulation…

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Field visit to Herdade do Espor√£o in Alentejo

Right after the mid-term plenary meeting in Lisbon in November 2017, on Thursday 9 we went on a field visit to the study area in the Alentejo region. This includes the reservoirs and irrigation areas of the Espor√£o, Vigia and Monte Novo reservoirs, near the beautiful city of √Čvora. The visit was organised and guided by our hosts in Portugal and INNOMED team members, Paulo Diogo and Pedro Be√ßa. The visit to the¬†Herdade do Esporao in Reguengos de Monsaraz was…

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Introducing the INNOMED project

INNOMED is a collaborative international research project under the ERA-NET WaterWorks2015 Call¬† (H2020-WATER 3-2015). WaterWorks2015 is a joint program from the Water JPI and the FACCE JPI. INNOMED aims to develop and apply a multidisciplinary approach to quantify the physical and economic effects of alternative management options in forestry and agriculture on the local and the catchment’s water balance. The INNOMED project brings together partners from Spain (CSIC), Cyprus (CyI), Italy (POLIMI and CNR-ISAFOM), Portugal (NOVA.ID.FCT), France (CIRAD-UMR-CIRED) and Moldova…

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