Opendata, web and dolomites


Coping with water scarcity in a globalized world

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "CWASI" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: TORINO
postcode: 10129

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Italy [IT]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙222˙500 €
 EC max contribution 1˙222˙500 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2014-CoG
 Funding Scheme ERC-COG
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-07-01   to  2020-06-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    POLITECNICO DI TORINO IT (TORINO) coordinator 1˙222˙500.00


 Project objective

We intend to set up a new globalized perspective to tackle water and food security in the 21st century. This issue is intrinsically global as the international trade of massive amounts of food makes societies less reliant on locally available water, and entails large-scale transfers of virtual water (defined as the water needed to produce a given amount of a food commodity). The network of virtual water trade connects a large portion of the global population, with 2800 km3 of virtual water moved around the globe in a year. We provide here definitive indications on the effects of the globalization of (virtual) water on the vulnerability to a water crisis of the global water system. More specifically, we formulate the following research hypotheses: 1) The globalization of (virtual) water resources is a short-term solution to malnourishment, famine, and conflicts, but it also has relevant negative implications for human societies. 2) The virtual water dynamics provide the suitable framework in order to quantitatively relate water-crises occurrence to environmental and socio-economic factors. 3) The risk of catastrophic, global-scale, water crises will increase in the next decades. To test these hypotheses, we will capitalize on the tremendous amount of information embedded in nearly 50 years of available food and virtual water trade data. We will adopt an innovative research approach based on the use of: advanced statistical tools for data verification and uncertainty modeling; methods borrowed from the complex network theory, aimed at analyzing the propagation of failures through the network; multivariate nonlinear analyses, to reproduce the dependence of virtual water on time and on external drivers; multi-state stochastic modeling, to study the effect on the global water system of random fluctuations of the external drivers; and scenario analysis, to predict the future probability of occurrence of water crises.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2018 Emanuele Moioli, Federico Salvati, Marco Chiesa, Roza T. Siecha, Flavio Manenti, Francesco Laio, Maria Cristina Rulli
Analysis of the current world biofuel production under a water–food–energy nexus perspective
published pages: 22-31, ISSN: 0309-1708, DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2018.07.007
Advances in Water Resources 121 2020-03-23
2019 Paola Mazzoglio, Francesco Laio, Simone Balbo, Piero Boccardo, Franca Disabato
Improving an Extreme Rainfall Detection System with GPM IMERG data
published pages: 677, ISSN: 2072-4292, DOI: 10.3390/rs11060677
Remote Sensing 11/6 2020-03-23
2019 Tiziano Distefano, Guido Chiarotti, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
Spatial Distribution of the International Food Prices: Unexpected Heterogeneity and Randomness
published pages: 122-132, ISSN: 0921-8009, DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2019.01.010
Ecological Economics 159 2020-03-23
2019 Irene Soligno, Luca Ridolfi, Francesco Laio
The globalization of riverine environmental resources through the food trade
published pages: 24020, ISSN: 1748-9326, DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/aaf93a
Environmental Research Letters 14/2 2020-03-23
2018 Carla Sciarra, Guido Chiarotti, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
A change of perspective in network centrality
published pages: , ISSN: 2045-2322, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-33336-8
Scientific Reports 8/1 2020-03-13
2018 Tiziano Distefano, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi, Stefano Schiavo
Shock transmission in the International Food Trade Network
published pages: e0200639, ISSN: 1932-6203, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0200639
PLOS ONE 13/8 2020-03-13
2019 Serena Ceola, Francesco Laio, Alberto Montanari
Global-scale human pressure evolution imprints on sustainability of river systems
published pages: 3933-3944, ISSN: 1607-7938, DOI: 10.5194/hess-23-3933-2019
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 23/9 2020-03-13
2019 Roberta Paranunzio, Serena Ceola, Francesco Laio, Alberto Montanari
Evaluating the Effects of Urbanization Evolution on Air Temperature Trends Using Nightlight Satellite Data
published pages: 117, ISSN: 2073-4433, DOI: 10.3390/atmos10030117
Atmosphere 10/3 2020-03-13
2017 Salvatore Calabrese, Amilcare Porporato, Francesco Laio, Paolo D’Odorico, Luca Ridolfi
Age distribution dynamics with stochastic jumps in mortality
published pages: 20170451, ISSN: 1364-5021, DOI: 10.1098/rspa.2017.0451
Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences 473/2207 2020-03-13
2018 Stefania Tamea, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
Erratum: Corrigendum: Global effects of local food-production crises: a virtual water perspective
published pages: , ISSN: 2045-2322, DOI: 10.1038/srep46987
Scientific Reports 8/1 2020-03-13
2019 Paolo D’Odorico, Joel Carr, Carole Dalin, Jampel Dell’Angelo, Megan Konar, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi, Lorenzo Rosa, Samir Suweis, Stefania Tamea, Marta Tuninetti
Global virtual water trade and the hydrological cycle: patterns, drivers, and socio-environmental impacts
published pages: 53001, ISSN: 1748-9326, DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/ab05f4
Environmental Research Letters 14/5 2020-03-13
2019 Tiziano Distefano, Marta Tuninetti, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
Tools for reconstructing the bilateral trade network: a critical assessment
published pages: 1-17, ISSN: 0953-5314, DOI: 10.1080/09535314.2019.1703173
Economic Systems Research 2019 2020-03-13
2017 Irene Soligno, Luca Ridolfi, Francesco Laio
The environmental cost of a reference withdrawal from surface waters: Definition and geography
published pages: 228-237, ISSN: 0309-1708, DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2017.10.016
Advances in Water Resources 110 2020-03-03
2016 D. Ganora, F. Laio
A comparison of regional flood frequency analysis approaches in a simulation framework
published pages: 5644-5661, ISSN: 0043-1397, DOI: 10.1002/2016WR018604
Water Resources Research 52/7 2020-03-03
2016 Guzzetti, Fausto; Paranunzio, Roberta; Chiarle, Marta; Laio, Francesco; Nigrelli, Guido
Climate anomalies associated with the occurrence of rockfalls at high-elevation in the Italian Alps
published pages: , ISSN: 1561-8633, DOI: 10.5194/nhess-16-2085-2016
Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, Vol 16, Iss 9, Pp 2085-2106 (2016) 1 2020-03-03
2016 Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi, Paolo D’Odorico
The past and future of food stocks
published pages: 35010, ISSN: 1748-9326, DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/11/3/035010
Environmental Research Letters 11/3 2020-03-03
2016 Stefania Tamea, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
Global effects of local food-production crises: a virtual water perspective
published pages: , ISSN: 2045-2322, DOI: 10.1038/srep18803
Scientific Reports 6/1 2020-03-03
2018 A. Abdelkader, A. Elshorbagy, M. Tuninetti, F. Laio, L. Ridolfi, H. Fahmy, A.Y. Hoekstra
National water, food, and trade modeling framework: The case of Egypt
published pages: 485-496, ISSN: 0048-9697, DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.05.197
Science of The Total Environment 639 2020-03-03
2015 Marta Tuninetti, Stefania Tamea, Paolo D\'Odorico, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
Global sensitivity of high-resolution estimates of crop water footprint
published pages: 8257-8272, ISSN: 0043-1397, DOI: 10.1002/2015WR017148
Water Resources Research 51/10 2020-03-03
2017 Marta Tuninetti, Stefania Tamea, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
A Fast Track approach to deal with the temporal dimension of crop water footprint
published pages: 74010, ISSN: 1748-9326, DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/aa6b09
Environmental Research Letters 12/7 2020-03-03
2017 Anna Botto, Daniele Ganora, Pierluigi Claps, Francesco Laio
Technical note: Design flood under hydrological uncertainty
published pages: 3353-3358, ISSN: 1607-7938, DOI: 10.5194/hess-21-3353-2017
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 21/7 2020-03-03
2017 Marta Antonelli, Francesco Laio, Stefania Tamea
Water resources, food security and the role of vortual water trade in the MENA region
published pages: 199-217, ISSN: , DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-45648-5_11
Environmental change and human security in the Middle East and Africa 2020-03-03
2017 Marta Tuninetti, Stefania Tamea, Francesco Laio, Luca Ridolfi
To trade or not to trade: Link prediction in the virtual water network
published pages: 528-537, ISSN: 0309-1708, DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2016.08.013
Advances in Water Resources 110 2020-03-03
2018 Andrea Libertino, Paola Allamano, Francesco Laio, Pierluigi Claps
Regional-scale analysis of extreme precipitation from short and fragmented records
published pages: 147-159, ISSN: 0309-1708, DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2017.12.015
Advances in Water Resources 112 2020-03-03
2016 Massimo Riccaboni; Francesco Laio; Stefania Tamea; Rodolfo Metulini
The Water Suitcase of Migrants: Assessing Virtual Water Fluxes Associated to Human Migration.
published pages: , ISSN: 1932-6203, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0153982
PLoS ONE, Vol 11, Iss 4, p e0153982 (2016) 2 2020-03-03
2017 M. Antonelli, S. Tamea, H. Yang
Intra-EU agricultural trade, virtual water flows and policy implications
published pages: 439-448, ISSN: 0048-9697, DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.02.105
Science of The Total Environment 587-588 2020-03-03

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