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Sustainable Consumption Institute

Dr Alison Browne presents to Defra’s Joint Water Evidence Programme 'Grand Challenges' policy workshop

5 June 2019

Dr Alison Browne (Senior Lecturer, Geography & SCI, University of Manchester), was one of only nine academics invited to present research evidence at a workshop run by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Environment Agency (EA) in London on 6th June 2019. The aim of the workshop was to gather together senior policy makers and thought leaders from academia to discuss evidence regarding the water environment and the challenges that it faces over the next 50 years.

Hosted by Defra and the EA, this forms part of the government consultations for the Joint Water Evidence Programme, to gather evidence to inform the policy landscape of Water Quality and Water Services which will be shaped by delivering the aims of the 25 Year Environment Plan. This workshop brings together academics, government researchers and senior policy makers to: identify future grand challenges for water; consider how to deliver research to best inform the longer term plans; and consider the evidence required to pursue policy changes in order to bring about environmental improvements. The workshop will define and address the long-term knowledge gaps relating to water quality and water services. Dr Alison Browne was invited to present evidence from their research on the topic of Water Efficiency.

This invitation follows a near decade long engagement with Defra, the EA, and the wider UK water sector by Dr Alison Browne and colleagues such as Dr Claire Hoolohan (Research Fellow, Tyndall Centre for Climate Change, University of Manchester). This work has been instrumental in demonstrating to the UK government how social science research can be used to critically reflect on, and provide alternatives to, ways of understanding and intervening in everyday water demand, water efficiency and water futures.

Download the transcript of the 20 minute talk at the workshop, prepared by Dr Alison Browne and Dr Claire Hoolohan.

There is an associated talk on water efficiency presented at the same event by Dr Liz Sharp and Dr Emma Westling from the University of Sheffield who are research partners of Dr Ali Browne on the EPSRC funded Twenty65 project.

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