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 Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) 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 close relationship greatly facilitates ICIWaRM’s ability to engage the UNESCO water family, serving as a focal point for increasing U.S. contributions to the Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP).


ICIWaRM is part of a global network of UNESCO IHP water-related UNESCO Category 2 Centers. (Technically, its agreement with UNESCO expired in February 2021, but in most ways we still function as a center.) As such, we emphasize collaboration with many of the other UNESCO centers. We also work with some of UNESCO’s water-related university chairs. We directly support UNESCO IHP’s Global Network on  Water and Development Information for Arid Lands, 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, and Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy (HELP) program, among 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 9th phase of the IHP program (IHP-IX), the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and USACE Goals, particularly as related to water resources systems, collaborative approaches, and environmental sustainability. These goals and objectives are consistent with US Government goals for international water resources, as expressed through the Senator Paul Simon Water for the World Act, the US Global Water Strategy (2022-2027) and other documents.


Leadership and coordination is provided by its Director, William S. (Will) Logan. He can be reached at ICIWaRM [at] gmail [dot] com. The Director of the host institution, the Institute for Water Resources, is Joe Manous.


ICIWaRM’s activities are led from IWR’s Water Resources Center in Alexandria, Virginia. However, much of the Center’s work is accomplished by its partners, which include the Hydrologic Engineering Center, the Risk Management Center and the Collaboration and Public Participation Center of Expertise) within IWR, other offices of USACE, other US Government agencies (USGS, NASA, NOAA and others), U.S. academic institutions (including University of California, Irvine, Oregon State University, Colorado State University, University of Arizona, Florida International University and the University of Cincinnati), and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) including the Alliance for Global Water Adaptation.


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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