Welcome to our first GWI newsletter of the year!
The Welcome to Country at the 11th Symposium on Tastes, Odours and Algal Toxins in Water, hosted by UNSW
Welcome to our first GWI newsletter of the year!
2017 promises to be as exciting a year in water as any before – whether through ensuring best use of the massive financial investments aimed at achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, or adapting to the multifarious impacts of climate change following three years of global temperature records. At the UNSW Global Water Institute, we will be rising to meet these challenges through cutting edge research across all dimensions of water and by training the next generation of water professionals and leaders across the globe.
This newsletter brings you some of our latest stories – from hosting an international conference to working on humanitarian issues in Africa and on remote islands closer to home. In this issue, we profile our Centre of Ecosystem Science, an international leader in waterbirds, platypus ecology, and protection of relatively undisturbed wetlands and basins  – from the Okavango in Botswana to our own Lake Eyre Basin (winner of the 2015 International Riverprize).
Stories cover our cutting-edge technologies that track water distribution across the Murray-Darling Basin over 30 years to the latest nuclear technologies used in improving oyster nutrition. It is always a delight to profile one of our 160 PhD students; Karen File demonstrates the passion, thoughtfulness and social and cultural understanding of communities needed to find public health solutions for South Pacific Islanders. I hope you enjoy this edition and I look forward to joining you on a successful water journey for 2017.

Professor Nick Schofield
Director, UNSW-GWI
Mer Island
Building sustainable infrastructure on Mer Island
For the third year in a row, students in UNSW's 4th-year Planning Sustainable Infrastracture course will have the opportunity to engage in a  project with a real community on Murray (Mer) Island in the Torres Strait. The course (CVEN4701) enables civil and environmental engineers to analyse and design sustainable infrastructure to support the needs of regional economies and populations. In 2017, students will consider how climate will influence the planning and design of household water, waste and energy systems in the remote island community.
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Photo credit: Irene Dowdy, MDBA
Flood impact research catches NASA's attention
UNSW Postdoctoral Researcher, Mark Broich, has been featured by NASA following his presentation at the 24,000-strong American Geophysical Union (AGU) meeting in late 2016. Dr Broich is a researcher at the Geospatial Analysis for Environmental Change Lab, which is hosted at the UNSW Kensington campus. His presentation, demonstrating how seasonal flooding impacts riparian vegetation in the Murray Darling Basin, caught the attention of NASA Landsat Science, who then interviewed Dr Broich about his research and published the result online.
Read full interview
Mike Dove and Libby Fabian at the oyster hatchery where Libby is working on oyster spat nutrition
Improving oyster diets through nuclear technologies
UNSW is becoming a world-leader in the application of nuclear technologies to aquaculture, through a collaborative research program with the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI). The research, led by the UNSW Aquaculture Research Group, is testing several nuclear technologies to help identify which species of microalgae contribute to oyster growth. This may ultimately lead to improved diets and growth performance of oysters, and reduced operating costs for hatcheries worldwide.
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WaSH Tanzania
Building WaSH resilience in Tanzania
The UNSW Water Research Centre (WRC) is working together with Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) on a research project to improve understanding of the interactions of WaSH and climate in Tanzania. The UNSW team is working to identify potential relationships between water quality and climate variability, and how these relationships vary for different WaSH infrastructure and household behaviours. The research findings will be utilized by the Tanzania Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children to develop future WaSH policies in Tanzania.
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Landon Halloran
GWI talks groundwater and research at Thai water forum
UNSW-GWI member and postdoctoral researcher, Dr. Landon Halloran, was a keynote speaker at the Water Institute for Sustainability (WIS) Forum in Bangkok, Thailand, last month. The WIS Forum, held at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre on 24-26 January, was organised by the Federation of Thai Industries in honour of the late King Rama IX. The second day of the event was dedicated to international water management issues and also included talks by representatives from the Netherlands and Israel. Dr Halloran’s keynote was titled Groundwater management in Australia: a research perspective.
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C-SHOR MoU Signing
UNSW to participate in new Centre for Southern Hemisphere Ocean Research
In late 2016, representatives from UNSW and China’s Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (QNLM) signed an MoU for the creation of a new Centre for Southern Hemisphere Ocean Research (C-SHOR). As one of the partners of the Centre, UNSW will receive $1.25m of funding over 5 years to advance marine and coastal research in the Southern Hemisphere. The centre will become part of UNSW’s Torch Innovation Precinct—showcasing entrepreneurship and Chinese and Australian collaboration.
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In Profile: Centre for Ecosystem Science
The UNSW Centre for Ecosystem Science is a national and global leader in freshwater management and ecology and conservation science. Part of the Global Water Institute, the Centre for Ecosystem Science collaborates extensively with researchers, government, industry and the community to better understand ecosystem function for long-term environmental sustainability. One of the Centre’s key roles is to utilise its state-of-the-art resources to undertake remote sensing for freshwater, ecology and flood management strategies, providing real-time data on flood patterns and waterbird communities to governments for informed decision-making.
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Karen File and daughters, Marley and Matilda. Credit: Timothy Hewatt
Introducing PhD student, Karen File
Worldwide, diarrhea is responsible for 11% of all deaths of children under the age of five. In Vanuatu, this issue is deeper, with almost 14% of deaths of children under five attributed to diarrhea. Researchers agree that the best solution to diarrhea is simply hand-washing with soap, however, research evidence from across the globe shows hand-washing rates are poor and the practice is difficult to instill in most communities. Through her PhD at the UNSW’s School of Public Health and Community Medicine, Karen is examining the social and cultural aspects of health advice for small children in Vanuatu.
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A/Prof Anik Bhaduri - SWFP
GWI Seminar Series: Balancing water needs for People and Nature.
The challenge of how to fairly manage water needs for both people and nature has been top of mind for researchers, Governments, and other water practitioners for quite some time. Yet, today, there remain virtually no places in the world where a high degree of water security for humans has been achieved without threatening, or degrading the environment. Associate Professor Anik Bhaduri, Executive Director of the Sustainable Water Future Program (SWFP), paints a worrying picture for the future of global water sustainability. He predicts that unless vital knowledge gaps are filled now, and all sectors of society are engaged in a conversation on how to plan and prepare for the future, resource-efficiency, environmental sustainability and human wellbeing will be compromised.
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11th IWA Symposium
11th Symposium on Tastes, Odours and Algal Toxins in Water
Experts from all over the world last week converged in Sydney to discuss how to eradicate odours from water sources and improve the taste of drinking water. The experts took part in the 11th International Water Association (IWA) Symposium on Tastes, Odours and Algal Toxins in Water,  held at the University of New South Wales’ (UNSW) Kensington Campus on 14-16 February. Hosted by the UNSW’s Water Research Centre (WRC), the symposium presented the latest, cutting-edge research targeted at reducing odours from water sources and improving the taste of water for public consumption.
Learn more
Australasian Groundwater Conference: Abstracts closing soon
Abstract submission for the 2017 Australasian Groundwater Conference closes on Wednesday 1 March. Over 300 delegates from the groundwater community across Australasia will gather at the UNSW Kensington Campus on 11-13 July, to examine the multi-dimensional challenges affecting the sustainable development of the region's groundwater resources. With an overarching theme of Groundwater Futures: Science to Practice, presentations will explore climate change and groundwater resource challenges, energy futures, social license to operate and future directions and innovation in groundwater.
Learn more
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The Water Network
Online knowledge sharing platform for water professionals. 
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International Centre of Excellence in Water Resources Management
Professor Nick Schofield
Director, UNSW-GWI
E: n.schofield@unsw.edu.au
P: +61 (2) 9385 5097
M: +61 (2) 435 579 209
UNSW Global Water Institute
Kensington Campus, NSW, 2052
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