December 28, 2023
With the reentry of the United States into UNESCO and its election to the Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme’s 35-member Council, it is critical to engage the US scientific community in IHP’s current ninth phase of its program (IHP-IX). As a mechanism to introduce IHP to many who were not familiar with it, ICIWaRM and IHP co-organized a Town Hall at the American Geophysical Union Fall meeting in San Francisco, USA on December 12, 2023. The event was titled Science to Action for a Water Secure World: Opportunities for Engagement of the AGU Hydrology and Water Community in UNESCO Water Programs.
The purposes of the town hall were (a) To introduce AGU members to UNESCO IHP’s goals and purposes, and current, ninth phase of IHP, “Science for a water secure world in a changing environment”; and (b) help and encourage AGU members to find ways to participate in and contribute to IHP and its “water family” of centers and chairs—thus strengthening the science inputs to the program.
There were approximately 40 participants in the meeting. Abou Amani, Director of the Water Sciences Division and IHP secretary, along with Anil Mishra, Chief of Section, Hydrological Systems, Climate Change and Adaptation represented UNESCO at the meeting. Will Logan, Director of ICIWaRM spoke on the IHP “Water Family” and ways that those interested could engage. Bill Cunningham, Director, Office of International Programs, US Geological Survey opened and moderated discussion at the meeting. Jordan Read, Executive Director of CUAHSI and Phu Nguyen, Assistant Adjunct Professor at the University of California, Irvine joined the panel discussion.
The town hall provided much feedback and many new ideas for bringing additional human resources into IHP’s work to help address the world’s many water challenges.