Read about a selection of IWC's Integrated water management projects below.
Integrated water management projects
To see all IWC Integrated water management projects, visit IWM projects
To see all IWC projects, visit Portfolio
Australian Water Research Facility (AWRF) Catchment Risk Assessment in Solomon Islands and Vanuatu
Researchers from The University of Queensland, the IWC and Monash University investigated how Australia, supported by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), could assist developing countries to move toward sustainable water management.
The research team involved representatives from groups affecting and affected by water in the catchment, including traditional landowner clans, and government and non-government organisations, in the development of a catchment model. Models developed took into account the entire water cycle moving from the atmosphere, through the landscape, various human and natural uses, and back into the atmosphere. The research involved understanding the catchment from a systems perspective including the complex cultural and management systems in place and their impact on the natural system. The participatory modelling process elicited whole-of-water cycle concepts and assessment of risk.
(photo courtesy of B.Powell)
The participatory modelling process improved communication between people with different educational backgrounds, identified current gaps in measured data, and allowed water managers to compare the impact of different management actions such as water treatment for sediment or for disease.
Local project partners from government agencies are now looking at using similar modelling and participatory engagement techniques for other catchments with assistance from the IWC research team.
Global Indicators — Linking Water to Human Health and Poverty
IWC partners Griffith University and The University of Western Australia and international collaborators used existing databases to develop indicators, which include environmental outcomes, human health and economic benefits. This project developed the first worldwide synthesis to jointly consider human and biodiversity perspectives on water security using a spatial framework that quantifies multiple stressors and accounts for downstream impacts.
The water wealth index provides a scientifically based, defendable process of aid prioritisation as decision support for allocation of water-related aid. The index has five major components—agricultural productivity, institutional capacity, food security, environment and human health—each containing quantitative data on issues such as infant mortality, safe drinking water, threatened species and nutrient enrichment.
(photo courtesy of B.Powell)
The project offers a tool for prioritising policy and management responses to the crisis facing freshwater resources. It underscores the necessity of limiting threats at their source, instead of through costly remediation of symptoms, in order to assure global water security for both humans and freshwater biodiversity.