Water Resources Research Institutes

What are the Water Resources Research Institutes?
The Water Resources Research Institutes are partnerships among state universities; federal, state, and local governments; business and industries; as well as non-governmental organizations aimed at solving the problems of water supply and water quality at local, state, regional, and national levels. At a public university of each state, a small federal grant provides base support for a program that identifies local and state needs for water research, finds university researchers capable of conducting useful research, and leverages federal funds with state and other resources to sponsor the needed investigations. Some of these programs are freestanding institutes, others are subunits within university departments or cross-discipline research entities.

Who runs the Water Resources Research Institutes?
WRRI's are housed and administered within state universities. Most are located at land-grant universities where they cooperate with and draw upon the resources of traditional agriculture, engineering, natural resource faculty and extension networks. Each institute is under the leadership of a university faculty member with a record of achievements in water-related research. Some institutes have full-time directors, some have part-time directors, and some are administered along with other natural resource research programs in cross-discipline institutes. The institutes have established themselves as a primary link between water-related personnel in the academic community; local, state, and federal governments; and the private sector. To identify the most important state and local water research needs, each WRRI brings together a local advisory panel. Typically the advisory panel consists of local, state, and federal agency officials, representatives of business and industry, and representatives of non-governmental organizations. These panels identify the most pressing water problems facing their state/localities and establish priorities for research.

What do the Water Resources Research Institute do?
Water Resources Research Institutes encourage and help states address their specific water research needs. While management of water resources is a state and local responsibility, research has traditionally been a national undertaking. By providing a small amount of federal funding and requiring a non-federal match, the institute program encourages states to invest in university-based research to solve local water resource problems. Specifically:

  • By establishing and utilizing state advisory panels, WRRI helps states employ a conscious and systematic process for identifying and prioritizing needs for water-related information and analysis.
  • By drawing upon university faculties throughout their states, WRRI taps a wealth of research expertise and fosters multidisciplinary/innovative approaches to research on local water issues.
  • By collaborating with federal, state, local agencies and the private sector, WRRIs leverages their funding and helps build statewide and regional networks to share resources and information.
  • By awarding research grants through a competitive, peer-review process, WRRI sponsors research that will produce useful results and make sure its research is of the highest quality.
  • By publishing reports and other publications; by conducting seminars, workshops, and conferences; and by one-on-one communication with state and local agency personnel, WRRI makes sure the results of research are available to those who need the information and can put recommendations into action to improve water resource management.
  • By stimulating water-related research in universities, WRRI provides opportunities for undergraduate, graduate training and education of future water scientists, engineers, managers, and technicians.
Who are the customers of the Water Resources Research Institutes?
WRRI serve the citizens of the states and territories in which they are located. Direct consumers of WRRI research and information transfer are:
  • State water-quantity and water quality management agencies and state environmental health agencies.
  • Local governments.
  • Municipal water, wastewater, and environmental health agencies.
  • Private water and wastewater companies
  • Businesses and industries which use and manage or otherwise affect natural resources.
  • Farmers and other agricultural enterprises.
  • Environmental organizations.
  • Schools
  • Individuals
  • Federal agencies such as the Corps of Engineers, Environmental Protection Agency, DOE, DOD, and Interior.
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Dr. Walter Silva Araya
Dr. Walter Silva Araya
Dr. Jorge Rivera Santos
Dr. Jorge Rivera Santos
Associate Director
Graduate Students
Jesús Manuel Otero Vega
M.S.E. Student
e-mail: Contact me
Luis Gabriel Malavé Pérez
M.S.E. Student
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Sebastian Garcia Cordero
Ph.D. Student
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Oscar Hernan Martínez Pinilla
Ph.D. Student
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Past Students
Felix Luis Santiago Collazo
M.S.E. Student
e-mail: Contact me
Victor Manuel Vargas Lugo
M.S.E Graduate
e-mail: Contact me
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