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AWRA 2018 Summer Specialty Conference

The Science, Management and Governance of Transboundary Groundwater
Worthington Renaissance Fort Worth Hotel, Fort Worth, Texas
July 9 – 11, 2018

Have you ever attended a conference that dealt with a timely water resources issue, but still left you with an empty feeling? The topic was thoroughly explained and dissected by a plethora of renowned presenters and panelists. Still, you sensed that something was missing. Yes, you heard about how some festering problem, heretofore underneath everyone's radar, that would doom society if we continued to neglect it. Fingers were wagged, voices were raised, coffee consumed, arguments fomented. Terms like 'path forward', 'roadmap' and 'charting a course of action' were used liberally.

You enjoyed the conference, yet you still feel as though you just spent several days with little to show, save for a few more frequent-flyer miles and hotel rewards points. You don't really feel cheated, but something's missing. You neither recall being asked your opinion, nor nominated to help develop and promote a path forward. 

All that will change in Fort Worth, Texas, 9 - 11 July 2018 at AWRA's Summer Specialty Conference, The Science, Management and Governance of Transboundary Groundwater. Simply stated, transboundary groundwater is groundwater that crosses jurisdictional/political boundaries, be they boundaries between nations, states, provinces, counties, management districts, reservations, etc

The conference will begin as most conferences do. Expert plenary speakers - Ms. Astrid Hillers of the Global Environment Facility and Dr. Neno Kukuric of the International Groundwater Resources Assessment Centre - will hold forth. Ms. Hillers will discuss approaches that can be used to develop and implement frameworks for governing transboundary groundwater systems, and Dr. Kukuric will address the scientific resources that are being developed to aid in the management of transboundary groundwater resources.

After the opening plenary, over the next two days the best minds available will populate panels and platform presentations (over 50!) to address:

• New scientific methods for defining the extent and behavior of transboundary groundwater resources;

• Case studies on the governance and management of transboundary aquifers at all scales;

• Quality, quantity and ecosystem issues; 

• Emerging transboundary governance and management issues; and 

• Updates on and implications of legal arguments regarding access to and protection of transboundary groundwater resources. 

On the final day, Wednesday, 11 July, the conference will depart from its normal course. After providing instructions to the attendees on Monday, Lisa Beutler, Principal Executive Facilitator at Stantec and AWRA President-Elect, will conduct a facilitated plenary session. This session will:

• Solicit input on the pressing scientific issues of transboundary groundwater resources; 

• Identify current management and governance successes, failures, and needs.

• Identify a path forward

• Outline a white paper and select a writing team

You will greatly expand your understanding and knowledge of transboundary groundwater resources. More importantly you will have the opportunity to become active in the development and promulgation of a coherent strategy for addressing transboundary groundwater issues. 

Who Should Attend:

• Groundwater professionals • Water lawyers • Local/state/provincial/federal water officials • Water district managers and staff • Students • Environmental organizations • NGO and INGO members • Basin commissioners and staff • Journalists

We also hope you take advantage of the redeveloped downtown corridor in Ft. Worth, and the wealth of entertainment and cultural opportunities that the Ft. Worth/Dallas Metroplex has to offer. Join us in Ft. Worth, Texas on 9-11 July 2018 to discuss the newest developments in transboundary groundwater research and practice and innovative approaches for developing sustainable governance and management systems, from the local to regional to international scales.‚Äč

We look forward to seeing you in Texas in July 2018!

Dr. John C. Tracy
Conference Chair
Director, Texas Water Resources Institute
Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 

Dr. Michael E. Campana
Technical Program Chair
Technical Director, AWRA
Professor, College of Earth, Ocean and Atmosphere Sciences
Oregon State University, Corvallis OR