Water & Society

Water and Society Technical Committee

In Water and Society Technical Committee, we study how human-water systems affect and be affected by the natural systems, and we have been focused on the technical side of ultimate water management practices, but lately, we’ve realized that effective engagements with stakeholders at different levels are the keys to persuade better water decision-making. Therefore, we’ve amended our research focus toward the following three emerging science questions.

  1. How to better characterize human activities and integrate those in the process-based water modeling at different spatial scales?

This question intends to address the quantification of human activities (including implicit changes such as return flow) and coupled that into the evaluation and modeling of water resources and water-related disasters. The spatial scale can be as large as the global scale land surface hydrologic model or as small as the urban/city scale water infrastructure model. The utilization of qualitative data from social science (interview or focus group discussion) is a notable concern.   

  1. How to better communicate scientific results to the general public and inform policymaking?

This question addresses the fundamental purpose of any scientific research which is improving human well-being in our society. In Water and Society field, the possibility of future disasters, the uncertainty of hydro-climatic forecast and the commercial success of scientific research are three key aspects. As a scientific organization, how can AGU support these efforts is also highlighted by members. 

  1. What is the appropriate institutional structure to facilitate water governance and management?

This question targets the social/political/legal sides of the topic and tries to understand problems related to sectoral water right transfer, new technology diffusion and adaption, and coordination of tradeoff at institutional and individual level.    

Active Members

Megan Konar (Chair), University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Marc Müller (Deputy Chair), Notre Dame
Fengwei Hung (Secretary), Lehigh University

Committee Members