Australian Water Research Facility (AWRF)
The Australian Water Research Facility (AWRF) was a research partnership between AusAID and IWC for water and development issues in the Asia Pacific region.
Project Category: Applied Research
Key Areas of Work: Catchment management,Integrated Water Resource Management
November 2005 - November 2009
In recognising that research can improve the impact and effectiveness of Australia’s aid program, AWRF was established to contribute to AusAID’s development cooperation program in the water sector.
AWRF focused its research on the fragile nation states of the Pacific, with case studies in East Timor and the Solomon Islands. AWRF worked closely with in-country counterparts and AusAID to ensure that research activities address pressing development issues, were in-line with government and AusAID priorities and built linkages between local and Australian researchers.
In implementing research activities for AWRF, the IWC adopted a whole-of-water-cycle approach. This acknowledged the integrated nature of social, environmental and economic interactions within a catchment. A whole of water cycle approach encouraged the integration of water related issues, drawing links between water and poverty and health, the adoption of long-term planning and encouraging community participation.
AWRF was a collaborative research effort by all four IWC member universities with a team of expert natural resource managers, aquatic ecologists, community development specialists, anthropologists, environmental modellers and more.
Applied research conducted through the AWRF included:
- examples of creating global indicators from understanding the links between water and poverty
- catchment risk management in the South Pacific islands
- NGO partnerships and capacity development in the water sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector.