Leading Cardiff University Professor discusses water security at international conference

17 January 2018

Title slide from water security conference presentation
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Roger Falconer, Professor of Water Management and Founding Director of the Hydro-environment Research Centre, recently participated in an international conference on River Rejuvenation.

The conference, organised by The Art of Living and the International Association of Human Values (IAHV) and hosted by globally revered humanitarian Ravi Shankar, brought together water resource engineers, social scientists, policy makers and farmer groups involved in river rejuvenation projects, to discuss India’s growing water security issues.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
The conference was hosted by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

Speaking about the discussions that took place at the event Professor Falconer said: “Participating in this international conference on River Rejuvenation was one of the most rewarding and enlightening experiences of my academic careers, spanning over 40 years.

“I had the honour to speak alongside Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (founder of The Art of Living and IAHV) and after our speeches I met with him to discuss the challenges of global water security and learn about the water improvement activities that his organisations are leading through a Youth Leadership Training Programme (YTLP).”

India’s water crisis has escalated substantially over recent years, with climate change and the drastic use of land, deforestation and increased soil erosion particularly affecting the agricultural industry.

At the conference Professor Falconer spoke about his research into water security, noting its standing as a global issue that can only be truly resolved by collaboration across borders.

“The Art of Living have already led a wide range of initiatives to reduce water stress,” added Professor Falconer: “including: constructing 104 toilets and planting 25,000 trees in Telangana, reviving the water quality of river basins in Chennai, educating slum children in Mohali about water hygiene, rejuvenating the rivers in Karnataka, helping flood victims overcome trauma in Bihar, etc. These are just some of the remarkable community based efforts initiated by The Art of Living to reduce water stress across India, with the challenge now to develop many of these initiatives globally, as the world faces growing challenges of water security.”

Cardiff University is working to address the grand challenge of water for people and ecosystems in a changing world. Our Water Research Institute brings together academic expertise from across disciplines to facilitate research and the next generation of water researchers.