Integrated Water Resources Management:
The Emperor’s New Clothes or Indispensable Process?
“IWRM is easy to talk about but hard to implement.” – a practitioner
On behalf of the entire AWRA conference planning team I want to welcome you to Snowbird, UT, the fabulous year-round resort so convenient to Salt Lake City. We have chosen this spectacular venue for the groundbreaking conference, Integrated Water Resources Management: The Emperor’s New Clothes or Indispensable Process? The conference title frivolously asks the question we seek to answer: is IWRM a truly indispensable, useful process for water resources management, or do people employ it because they think it is de rigueur and do not want to appear stupid or incompetent?
So just what is IWRM, and what does it entail?
In 2002 the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg called for all countries to establish national Integrated Water Resources Management plans.
According to the Global Water Partnership (GWP), IWRM is a “process which promotes the coordinated development and management of water, land, and related resources in order to maximize the resultant economic and social welfare in an equitable manner without compromising the sustainability of vital ecosystems.” Is such a definition workable?
So how do we plan to address the efficacy of IWRM? With the following:
- Keynote presentation featuring Steven L. Stockton, P.E., Director of Civil Works, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Karen Krchnak, Director of International Water Policy, The Nature Conservancy
- Plenary session featuring experts such as Dr. Jerry Delli Priscoli, Institute for Water Resources, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, discussing various aspects of IWRM.
- 24 technical sessions featuring the following aspects of IWRM: water quality, flood management; geomorphology; regional planning, economics, groundwater, utilities management, agriculture, case studies, ecosystems, collaborative modeling, and more!
- A full-day Symposium on Collaborative Modeling as a Tool to Implement IWRM organized by the USACE’s Institute for Water Resources and Sandia National Laboratories. This unique symposium will be embedded within the conference and feature presentations on collaborative modeling – also known as shared vision planning or mediated modeling – from around the world.
- Special session featuring UNESCO HELP (Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy) case studies.
- Pre-conference Sunday afternoon workshop, Introduction to System Dynamics Modeling.
- Ample time and space for attendees to network and discuss IWRM and related concepts.
- Planned ‘walking field trip’ to see how the Snowbird Resort manages water at its site
- Closing Plenary Session: IWRM: Quo Vadis? A discussion of what we’ve learned about IWRM and where we need to take IWRM.
- Special guest appearance by The Emperor of IWRM!
AWRA conferences always provide ample opportunities for networking and interaction in a congenial atmosphere and the 2011 Summer Specialty Conference is no exception. We are employing our highly successful “Ask Me About” program which invites attendees to discuss topics of mutual interest with other attendees.
I look forward to meeting each of you in Utah this June as we continue AWRA’s august tradition of fostering “Community, Conversation and Connections” between and among professionals working in the nascent field of Integrated Water Resources Management.
If you attend only one IWRM conference, this is THE one to attend!
Be forewarned: if you do not attend, The Emperor will find you. And he will be unhappy.
Michael E. Campana
Conference General Chair