Water @UW

Do you have a project at UW addressing Water and cities, urbanism or the Seattle metropolitan region? If so we want to feature your work. Email us at urbanuw@uw.edu with the following information:   project title, brief description, link, image and relevant tags

Center for Urban Waters's website

Center for Urban Waters

Research conducted by University of Washington Tacoma scientists at the Center for Urban Waters seeks to understand and quantify the sources, pathways and impacts of chemical pollutants in urban waterways.Highly sensitive analytical tools to measure contaminant levels are combined with sophisticated computer models to track pollutant sources and transport in the Puget Sound region. UW students work side-by-side with...

Learn more on theCenter for Urban Waters website

Landscape Architecture (BLA, MLA)'s website

Landscape Architecture (BLA, MLA)

At the University of Washington, we strive to create a program that meets the complex social, environmental, political, and aesthetic challenges of our time. Our program emphasis on urban ecological design addresses the multiple dimensions of today’s environmental challenges – infrastructure, culture, ecological literacy, and human and environmental health. With our focus on the intersection of urbanism, ecology, and...

Learn more on theLandscape Architecture (BLA, MLA) website

Wetland Ecosystem Team's website

Wetland Ecosystem Team

The Wetland Ecosystem Team (WET) conducts basic and applied research on coastal wetland ecology. Our mission is to advance scientific knowledge of shallow-water and estuarine coastal wetland ecosystems to better understand natural and anthropogenic sources of their variability and change. We provide the research infrastructure to support graduate students in order for them to contribute to this mission and to...

Learn more on theWetland Ecosystem Team website

Lake Union Lab's website

Lake Union Lab

Lake Union Laboratory (LULab) is a collaboratory research project created to explore the overlapping and interdependent social, environmental, economic and technological dynamics of the city, specifically the Lake Union area of Seattle, Washington. This project serves as a means to investigate how multi-disciplinary and transdisciplinary models of research can build on the foundations of explorations in the historical, the spatial,...

Learn more on theLake Union Lab website

The Cities Collaboratory's website

The Cities Collaboratory

The Cities Collaboratory is a transdisciplinary research and teaching laboratory for the study of multiple dimensions of cities and urban processes. Based at the University of Washington, the Cities Collab seeks to challenge the way that cities are understood and reimagined as they meet twenty-first century challenges. Cities have long served as sites and agents of economic expansion, social innovation,...

Learn more on theThe Cities Collaboratory website

SeaGrant Washington's website

SeaGrant Washington

Washington Sea Grant (WSG) is a catalyst for innovative marine research and education opportunities. Research is the cornerstone of WSG’s mission to help people to better understand and address the challenges facing our oceans and coasts.As part of a national partnership funded and coordinated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) through a federal–state partnership, WSG-sponsors...

Learn more on theSeaGrant Washington website

Infrastructure Planning & Management - Floodplain Management (MIPM)'s website

Infrastructure Planning & Management - Floodplain Management (MIPM)

The Master of Infrastructure Planning & Management now offers a degree option in Floodplain Management, allowing students to earn their master’s with a focus on the study of coastal and riverine floodplain management. This 45-credit degree program lasts 24 months and launches with its first student cohort in summer 2016.Flooding is an extremely daunting and costly challenge facing society, with...

Learn more on theInfrastructure Planning & Management - Floodplain Management (MIPM) website

Green Futures Lab's website

Green Futures Lab

The Green Futures Lab mission is to support interdisciplinary research and design that advances our understanding of, visions for, and design of a vital and ecologically sustainable public realm. Apply Green Futures research and designs to policy develop potential urban green infrastructure solutions within Seattle and the Pacific Northwest region and work with the University of Washington, local communities and...

Learn more on theGreen Futures Lab website

Green Stormwater Infrastructure Design and Management (Cert)'s website

Green Stormwater Infrastructure Design and Management (Cert)

Expand your technical skills with training in green infrastructure practices that improve water quality by using the natural environment, soil and vegetation to reduce pollution caused by untreated stormwater entering our waterways. Study sustainable strategies, such as low impact development and urban retrofits, that reduce stormwater runoff, combined sewer overflow and water demand. Explore the design process, implementation and management...

Learn more on theGreen Stormwater Infrastructure Design and Management (Cert) website

Infrastructure Planning and Management (MIPM)'s website

Infrastructure Planning and Management (MIPM)

The online UW Master of Infrastructure Planning & Management prepares students to lead efforts to protect vital infrastructure systems from natural and manmade threats. Students in this program gain a broad understanding of the complex and interconnected nature of our infrastructure systems – communications, public health, water, energy, food and transportation – while also delving more deeply into a system...

Learn more on theInfrastructure Planning and Management (MIPM) website

Center for Health and the Global Environment (CHANGE)'s website

Center for Health and the Global Environment (CHANGE)

CHANGE collaboratively develops and promotes innovative approaches to understanding and managing the risks of global environmental change. CHANGE conducts research and policy analysis, education and training, and technical assistance and capacity building, integrating health, environmental, and social sciences. CHANGE focuses on health outcomes associated with the consequences of global environmental changes, such as extreme weather and climate events, water and...

Learn more on theCenter for Health and the Global Environment (CHANGE) website

Landscape Ecology and Conservation Lab's website

Landscape Ecology and Conservation Lab

​The Landscape Ecology and Conservation Lab does research in the areas of: Climate Change, Land-Use Change, and Ecosystem Services

Learn more on theLandscape Ecology and Conservation Lab website

The Informal Urban Communities Initiative's website

The Informal Urban Communities Initiative

The Informal Urban Communities Initiative | IUCI: The IUCI is a design activism, research and education program based in Lomas de Zapallal (LdZ), an informal urban settlement (slum) in northern Lima, Peru. It focuses on the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of community-driven interventions in the built environment and, in response to priorities articulated by community members, places particular emphasis on...

Learn more on theThe Informal Urban Communities Initiative website

NameAffiliationsAreas of Interest
Christine Bae
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Susan M. Bolton
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Michael T. Brett
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Stephen J. Burges
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Patrick Christie
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Jen Davison
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Kristie L. Ebi
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Gregory Hicks
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Faisal Hossain
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Julie M. Johnson
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Ed Lazowska
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Guillaume Mauger
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Scott Meschke
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Julian Olden
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Andrew Prindle
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Gundula Proksch
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Nancy Rottle
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Richard Watts
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Jan Whittington
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Joseph R Zunt
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Research CenterFocusMission
Urban Theory Lab
Harvard University
In the early 1970s, Henri Lefebvre put forward the radical hypothesis of the complete urbanization of society. This required, in his view, a radical shift from the analysis of urban form to the investigation of urbanization processes. The Urban Theory Lab builds upon Lefebvre’s approach to investigate emergent sociospatial formations under early twenty-first century capitalism.Our research starts from the proposition that inherited frameworks of urban knowledge must be radically reinvented to illuminate emergent forms of twenty-first century urbanization. In contrast to the urban/suburban/rural distinction that has long underpinned the major traditions of urban research, data collection and cartographic practice, we argue that the urban today represents a worldwide condition in which all political-economic and socio-environmental relations are enmeshed, regardless of terrestrial location or morphological configuration. This emergent condition of planetary urbanization means, paradoxically, that even spaces that lie well beyond the traditional centers of agglomeration—from worldwide shipping lanes, transportation networks and communications infrastructures to resource extraction sites, alpine and coastal tourist enclaves, offshore financial centers, agro-industrial catchment zones, and erstwhile “natural” spaces such as the world’s oceans, deserts, jungles, mountain ranges, tundra and atmosphere—are becoming integral to a worldwide operational landscape for (capitalist) urbanization processes.
Decision Center for a Desert City
Arizona State University
Decision Center for a Desert City (DCDC) at Arizona State University (ASU) was established in 2004 with an investment from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through the Decision Making Under Uncertainty (DMUU) program. DCDC’s mission has been to advance knowledge about decision making under uncertainty in the context of water sustainability and urban climate-change adaptation.DCDC, a research unit of the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability at ASU, conducts climate, water and decision research, and develops innovative tools to bridge the boundary between scientists and decision makers. With renewed NSF funding in 2010, DCDC II expanded its research agenda, trained a diverse new group of students, and engaged a wide range of stakeholders in the cooperative production of knowledge and action.
Arctic Design Group
University of Virginia
“The Arctic extends over an area of about 5.5 million square miles and includes 8 nations. For centuries it has been understood as vast, and almost mythical frozen realm. But increasingly, the dual forces of climate change and globalization are combining to rapidly transform the region. With increasing temperature, retreating sea ice, the opening up of new shipping routes, and demand for natural resources, the arctic is poised to become a network of development; fragile natural ecosystems, centuries of indigenous culture, and towns and cities that have existed at the outer edges of viability will be challenged to adapt.”The Arctic Design Group (ADG) was launched in 2013 at the University of Virginia School of Architecture as a multi-disciplinary platform for Arctic-focused research, encompassing the UVA School of Architecture, Department of Environmental Sciences, and the Law School. It is the first of its kind in the U.S. and one of only a handful of efforts worldwide to bring to the foreground design as a method to proactively develop strategies and proposals for the future northern territories.
Coastal Sustainability Studio
Lousiana State University
The LSU Coastal Sustainability Studio brings together academic disciplines that typically conduct research separately—such as designers, scientists, planners, and engineers—to intensively study and respond to critical issues of coastal settlement, restoration, flood protection, and economic development. Through its integrated design and systems thinking approach, programs, and projects, the CSS builds university capacity and transdisciplinary teams that work to develop strategies that address coastal problems.
Center for Advanced Urbanism
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Center for Advanced Urbanism is committed to fostering a rigorous design culture for the large scale; by focusing our disciplinary conversations about architecture, urban planning, landscape architecture, and systems thinking, not about the problems of yesterday, but of tomorrow. We are motivated by the radical changes in our environment, and the role that design and research can play in addressing these. We embrace conversations with the world's top experts at MIT, to feed and foster our innovations. We take pride in the fact that participants in the center do not just talk about things; they create projects, build things, and actively change our society out in the real world; and then come together to learn from each other's experiences, publish, and debate about future directions. The Center for Advanced Urbanism has been established at the initiative of the Dean and department Chairs of the School of Architecture and Planning and reflects a renewed drive to excellence in urbanism.
P-REX
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
P-REX a research lab focused on environmental problems caused by urbanization, including the design, remediation, and reuse of waste landscapes worldwide. P-REX works to develop non-traditional design solutions to push the boundaries of conventional practice and incorporate resilient thinking into large-scale strategic planning & design.
The Urban Risk Lab
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Urban Risk Lab at MIT develops methods and technologies to embed risk reduction and preparedness into the design of cities and regions to increase the resilience of local communities. Operating at the intersection of ecology and infrastructure, rural and urban, research and action; the Urban Risk Lab is an interdisciplinary organization of researchers and designers. With a global network of partners, the Lab is a place to innovate on techniques, processes, and systems to address the complexities of seismic, climatic, and hydrologic risks. We engage in action research through extensive field work and community workshops to focus on the needs of diverse cultures and contexts. We aspire to change the course of current global development trends through a radical shift in education and action to proactively embed preparedness and risk reduction in this rapidly urbanizing world.
West Philadelphia Landscape Project
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The West Philadelphia Landscape Project has worked in the Mill Creek Watershed since 1987, with a focus on the Mill Creek neighborhood. Throughout our more than 25-year history, we have worked with the people of Mill Creek to address the opportunities and challenges posed by the urban landscape.For more than twenty-five years, the West Philadelphia Landscape Project (WPLP) has worked in the Mill Creek watershed and neighborhood. Our mission is to restore nature and rebuild community through strategic design, planning, and education projects. Through our experience in Mill Creek, we seek to demonstrate how to create human settlements that are healthier, economical to build and maintain, more resilient, more beautiful, and more just.A key proposal of the West Philadelphia Landscape Project is to manage the Mill Creek watershed as part of a broad approach to improving regional water quality and as a strategy to secure funds to rebuild the neighborhood. We employ landscape literacy as a cornerstone of community development.During the past quarter century, hundreds of students, teachers, residents, and public officials have been part of WPLP. WPLP has worked with numerous partners, including the Philadelphia Water Department, Penn’s Center for Community Partnerships, Aspen Farms Community Garden, Sulzberger Middle School, the Mill Creek Coalition, the Philadelphia Urban Resources Partnership, and Philadelphia Green. WPLP is led by Anne Whiston Spirn, a professor of landscape architecture and planning at MIT, founded WPLP in 1987 when she was at the University of Pennsylvania.
Penn Institute for Urban Research
University of Pennsylvania
The Penn Institute for Urban Research (Penn IUR) is a university-wide, interdisciplinary institute at the University of Pennsylvania dedicated to urban research, education, and civic engagement. Affiliated with all 12 schools of the University of Pennsylvania and with the world of practice, Penn IUR fosters collaboration among scholars and policymakers across disciplines to address the needs of an increasingly urbanized society. The Penn Institute for Urban Research (Penn IUR) is dedicated to advancing cross-disciplinary urban-focused research, instruction, and civic engagement on issues relevant to cities around the world. As the global population becomes increasingly urban, understanding cities is vital to informed decision-making and public policy at the local, national, and international levels. Penn IUR focuses on research that informs the sustainable and inclusive twenty-first-century city. By providing a forum for collaborative scholarship and instruction at Penn and beyond, Penn IUR stimulates research and engages with urban practitioners and policymakers to inform urban policy.
African Centre for Cities
University of Cape Town
The African Centre for Cities (ACC) is an interdisciplinary research and teaching programme focused on quality scholarship regarding the dynamics of unsustainable urbanisation processes in Africa, with an eye on identifying systemic responses.Rapid and poorly governed urbanization in Africa points to a profound developmental and philosophical crisis. Most scholarship focuses on the development challenges but continue to fail to provide adequate answers or proposal to reverse growing urban inequality, environmental degradation and social conflicts.In this context it is unsurprising that there are very few qualified and appropriately trained urban professionals and activists who can manage Africa’s cities and towns. The ACC seeks to intervene into this situation by remaining rooted in context and building knowledge networks between durable research institutions across the Continent.The ACC conducts a series of applied research programmes in Cape Town, South Africa and significant parts of Africa.