Based on experience gained in the IP AquaStress, the system of complex and multi parametric indicators (Sullivan et al., 2007) will be further developed. The indicator framework will not only be used to describe current vulnerability of land and water resources to climate change, but also to assess the effectiveness of adaptation measures across scales and sectors.
The framework is a combination of two parts: the Integrated Sectoral Water Stress Index (ISWSI), which is the part of the framework able to capture the level of water stress resulting from sectoral demand, and the Potential Margin (PM), which is an assessment of the available water resource supply. The potential margin indicates the degree of dependency on local and imported water, and the safety margins remaining available. The ISWSI shows the level of water stress across the different sectors and the type of stress associated with each sector.
The major anthropogenic sectors to be considered within water management decisions are: domestic, agricultural, industrial, and tourism (which also includes services). In addition to these four sectors the environment is included, to ensure that a certain degree of water is allocated to the environment to enable ecological integrity.