Tufts University Water: Systems, Science, and Society Program
with support from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst Massachusetts Water Resources Research Center, presents
the 3rd Annual WSSS Interdisciplinary Water Symposium

Friday, April 27, 2012
51 Winthrop Street, Tufts University, Medford, MA

Symposium Program

The 2012 WSSS Symposium comprises a full day of events, on Friday, April 27 from 9:15 am to 5 pm, including

See the full Symposium agenda.


2012 Symposium Theme:
The Glass Half Full: Valuing Water in the 21st Century

Water is a necessity for life. This may suggest that there should not be a price for water, because it is theoretically invaluable. Without a measurement for the value of water, however, companies could not conduct benefit-cost analyses for water infrastructure projects, and government institutions and policymakers would not be able to map optimal water allocation schemes within river basins. Water pricing and valuation is an essential measurement standard for engineers, economists, and international policymakers alike to identify the most effective or profitable projects that aim to connect homes to clean drinking water, farmers to reliable irrigation, and industries to cost effective water solutions.

Our conference theme, The Glass Half Full: Valuing Water in the 21st Century, is motivated by the increasing necessity to unify the concept and methodologies of valuing water. The theories and practices of valuing water vary across disciplines, and may depend on different geographic, socioeconomic, and cultural factors. This requires an equal discussion platform that reaches across a variety of academic disciplines.

Throughout the day of our conference, we will be exploring a variety of water issues that require water valuation, including environmental flows, extreme water events including scarcity and floods, and water quality. How do we reach across disciplines to create a standard for valuing water? Does water valuation help us identify the most cost effective solutions to manage extreme water events in the future? Will water valuation help policymakers identify the optimal solutions to maintaining clean water supply for developed and developing nations? Join us in the discussion!



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The Water: Systems, Science and Society (WSSS) program is a graduate research and education program that provides Tufts students with interdisciplinary perspectives and tools to manage water-related problems around the world.

617.627.3645 | wsss@tufts.edu | WSSS, c/o Tufts Institute of the Environment | 210 Packard Ave | Medford, MA