The Water Programme aims to understand and address water-related risks and trade-offs to economic growth, human development, and water security. A problem-based and interdisciplinary research approach focuses on designing, testing, and implementing new tools, technologies, and models for enterprise and government.

Current projects are making science, policy and practice advances in the areas of urban utility finance, rural water institutions, groundwater risk management, smart river management, and mobile-enabled water technologies.

Two themes guide the programme: (1) Water Security, Growth and Development and (2) Smart Water Systems.

Awarded over £17 million of competitive grants from UK research councils (NERC, ESRC), UK DFID, UNICEF, and the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, the Water Programme has made major advances in:

  • water security and poverty
  • rural water sustainability
  • monitoring technologies
  • groundwater risk management
  • innovative financial instruments

Enterprise partners in the programme include leaders in the extractives industry, beverages/food sector, mobile network operators, and wireless technology industries.