National Water Knowledge and Research Platform
In November 2008, COAG agreed to the development of a National Water Knowledge and Research Strategy to establish priority research areas, ensure coordinated research effort, and ensure the best returns from investment. The outcome of that process is the 'National Water Knowledge and Research Platform ('The Platform'), which has now been adopted by the Commonwealth and all State and Territory governments through the COAG Standing Council on Environment and Water (SCEW). SCEW has directed that implementation of the Platform, within the resources available, be progressed under the guidance of the National Water Reform Thematic Oversight Group with the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities as lead agency.
What is the purpose of the Platform?
The objective of the Platform is for key decisions on water policy, management and use in Australia to be based on best available and continuously improving knowledge and information. The Platform identifies national priority water knowledge and research needs for the next five years. The Platform does not seek to describe governance models, funding options or budget for the supply of research services, rather it focuses on identifying priorities and establishing consistent approaches for obtaining and using research in priority areas.
The Platform identifies eight priority research themes:
- environmental water
- water quality
- social, economic and institutional reforms
- future water availability
- irrigation water use efficiency
- hydrology and hydrological modelling
- urban water systems
Focal groups, comprised of representatives from each jurisdiction, will develop specific implementation plans for each research theme, consulting with relevant research and industry communities.