The City Blueprint approach has been developed at KWR Watercycle Research Institute. The present paper addresses the baseline assessments of 11 cities with the aim (1) to explain why the focus needs to be in cities in solving the global water governance crisis, (2) to demonstrate, refine and discuss the assessment approach. Furthermore (3) the Blue City Index (BCI), the arithmetic mean of the 24 indicators used in the City Blueprint, is introduced.
The BCI was positively correlated with the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per person, the ambitions of the local authorities regarding the sustainability of the UWCS, the voluntary participation index (VPI) and all governance indicators according to the World Bank. The study demonstrated that the variability in sustainability among the UWCS of cities offers great opportunities for short-term and long-term improvements, provided that cities share their best practices.