Alberta lakes and mountains


Water access and quality is a fundamental human right. It is a responsibility that is shared globally. 

Accepting that responsibility means ensuring that people around the world, regardless of where they live, have access to clean and safe drinking water, while at the same time ensuring ecosystem health, and food and energy production.

Through its Water Initiative, the University of Alberta concentrates its scientific and engineering capacities to influence water research, water technology and water policy, striving to develop and contribute to solutions that address challenges in water quality, supply and usage.

Video: Dr. Greg Goss introduces the Water Initiative during a panel discussion on Collaborative Canadian Water Leadership at the Canadian Water Summit, Calgary, June 27, 2013. [running time 12:06]


Develop scientific, technological and political approaches to water needs for human health, ecosystem health, and food and energy production through insightful governance and an understanding of social, cultural and historic frameworks.

Support a new generation of thinkers, decision makers, scientists and policy makers who are educated with a more holistic understanding of water supply, demand and quality requirements for people, their environment and their industries.

Facilitate innovation and multidisciplinary education in water by:

  • filling in critical gaps
  • promoting top quality interdisciplinary research
  • establishing an innovative education program in water

The Water Initiative provides industry, government and NGOs with innovative solutions to today's and tomorrow's water problems. It engages the public sector, the private sector and international partners to advance knowledge and innovation for global water challenges at the intersection of social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences and engineering.