The advancement of the science and practice of integrated water resources management (IWRM) to address water security and other water-related challenges by regional and global action—through new knowledge, innovative technologies, collaborative interdisciplinary scientific research, networking, training and capacity development—focusing on readily transferable, practical science and technology.


ICIWaRM envisions a world where UNESCO member states collaboratively find solutions to their high-priority water challenges using best practices drawn from successful applications of integrated water resources management (IWRM).


The International Center for Integrated Water Resources Management (ICIWaRM) was established by the U.S. Army Institute for Water Resources (IWR) in 2007 in collaboration with U.S. institutions and organizations sharing an interest in the advancement of the science and practice of integrated water resources management (IWRM) around the globe. It was formalized as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) category 2 water center in October 2009 with the signing of an agreement between the U.S. Government and UNESCO. The designation greatly facilitates ICIWaRM’s ability to engage the UNESCO water family, serving as a focal point for increasing U.S. contributions to the International Hydrological Programme (IHP).


ICIWaRM does not have a large staff. Rather, it engages highly qualified professionals from within the Institute for Water Resources (including the Hydrologic Engineering Center, the Risk Management Center and the Collaboration and Public Participation Center of Expertise), elsewhere in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, other US Government agencies (USGS, NASA, NOAA and others), its network of universities (including Princeton University, University of California, Irvine, Oregon State University, Colorado State University, University of Arizona, and Florida International University), and its NGO and UNESCO partners.

Leadership and coordination is provided by its Acting Director, Wesley E. Coleman, Jr., and Deputy Director, William S. (Will) Logan. They can be reached through the “contact us” tab on the home page.


ICIWaRM is part of a global network of UNESCO IHP water-related UNESCO Category 2 Centers. As such, we emphasize collaboration with many of these other UNESCO centers. We also work with some of UNESCO’s water-related university chairs. We directly support UNESCO IHP’s Programme for Water and Development Information for Arid Lands — a Global Network, or G-WADI, as its Global Technical Secretariat. We also support UNESCO and our partner Category 2 Centers through our support of programs such as the International Flood Initiative, International Sediment Initiative, Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy (HELP) program, and others.

As a center working in partnership with UNESCO, ICIWaRM serves as a USG expertise center for technology transfer, integrating new ideas, science and technology developed both in the U.S. and through the various IHP programs and initiatives, with current “best management practices” for IWRM. This is to help achieve the objectives associated with the 8th phase of the IHP program (2014-2021), the UN Millennium Development Goals, and the USACE Campaign Plan Goals, particularly as related to water resources systems, collaborative approaches, and environmental sustainability–consistent with USG goals for international water resources, as expressed through the Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act, the USAID Water and Development Strategy (2013-2018) and other documents.


ICIWaRM’s activities are led and, in part, conducted by IWR’s main office in Alexandria, Virginia, along with IWR’s Hydrologic Engineering Center in Davis, California. However, much of the Center’s work is accomplished by its partners, which include U.S. academic institutions, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), other U.S. Government federal agencies, and international organizations. Its initial emphasis was on Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, but it is now engaged in activities around the world.


IWRM has been defined in many ways, with many different facets, by many different organizations. ICIWaRM’s framework is shown in the figure below, which reflects not just what we think but what we do.


ICIWaRM’s operational framework

Figure: ICIWaRM’s focus on integrated water resources management, with four primary focus areas and four cross-cutting tools and approaches.

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