The impact of explosive weapons on urban services: Direct and reverberating effects across space and time

This article reviews the factors that determine the impact of explosive weapons on urban services in space and time, with a focus on drinking water services. The evidence comes from published and unpublished research and records, as well as experience restoring or maintaining such services. Urban services are seen as interconnected, and each composed of interdependent components of people, consumables and hardware. Elements that make up the components are labelled "upstream", "midstream" and "downstream", to reflect their location and hierarchy in the production and delivery of any urban service. The impact of explosive weapons is broken into the direct effects on any of the components of a service, and the reverberating effects on up- and or downstream components of the same service, or on other services.

About the authors

Michael Talhami
International Committee of the Red Cross

Michael Talhami is the ICRC Regional Water and Habitat Adviser for the Near and Middle East. He was formerly a senior policy adviser addressing the management and governance of water resources problems in conflict settings.

Mark Zeitoun
University of East Anglia

Mark Zeitoun is Professor of Water Policy and Security at the School of International Development, University of East Anglia, and the UEA Water Security Research Centre.