The world is facing severe challenges in meeting growing water demand due to increased population, intensified agriculture, dramatic changes in land use and climate change. This widens the demand-supply gap which in turn puts relentless pressure on the groundwater systems to bridge the gap. The exorbitant exploitation of groundwater has caused alarming rate of decline in groundwater level in many areas, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions where surface water is scarce and tubewell irrigation is practiced for agricultural productivity. The objective of this paper is to present a framework of simulation coupled optimization model for the comprehensive evaluation of the groundwater system to the imposed forcing stresses expressed as hydraulic, climatic and landscape stresses in order to arrive at the strategic regulatory plans of optimal pumping, groundwater withdrawal permits and well installation permits. It combines a numerical groundwater flow simulation model with an optimization model using internally linked resource matrix or embedding technique, a climate change effect simulator and a landscape change effect simulator. The groundwater flow simulation is carried out using a finite difference numerical model and the optimization model is solved using simplex algorithm for linear optimization model and exterior penalty function method linked pattern search algorithm for nonlinear optimization model. The developed modeling framework has been applied to two study areas, namely, Delhi aquifer system located in India and Aynalem aquifer system located in Ethiopia. Results reveal that the current groundwater withdrawal is more than the optimal pumping, indicating overexploitation of groundwater from several wells in the study areas. It is imperative to put regulations on pumping rates and installation of new wells to check the decline of groundwater table in critical areas and to ensure long term sustainability as the current pumping practice may not be secure on long run unless precautionary measures are taken.