HWISE Community

The Household Water Insecurity (HWISE) Research Coordination Network (RCN) operates at the strategic intersection of social science discovery, policy, and practice.  Our mission is to build a community of practice and collaboration that fosters key analytics and theoretical advances coupled with the development of research protocols and standardized assessments to document, benchmark, and understand the causes and outcomes of water insecurity at the household scale.

The strength of the HWISE RCN lies in its multidisciplinary approach and the partnerships developed around the world. Our objectives are to promote cutting edge research about the experiences and assessment of HWISE, and to create a network that supports scientific discovery and professional development.  We intend for the impact of this work to be increased awareness of the importance of household-level water security in programs, research, and policy. In all grants, publications, posters, presentations, and meetings we hope to nurture this spirit of collaboration.

The scope of the HWISE Network proposed activities is global and cross cultural, as we recognize the important advances in water sustainability and policy development that originate in diverse environmental contexts and regions. Consequently, the HWISE Network will draw from scholars, policy makers, and practitioners globally.  Our work advances the goal of sustainable and socially equitable water policy and interventions through the robust evaluation of key water security problems. We pay explicit attention to the elucidation of causes and outcomes of household water insecurity and translation research outcomes into meaningful and useful products for practitioners, communities, and decision-makers.

HWISE Workshop, September 2016, Texas A&M University

Our HWISE RCN, currently funded by the National Science Foundation, developed from an existing collaboration among the key personnel (Jepson, Young, and Wutich) and an inaugural workshop in 2016 at Texas A&M University (left, click here for more on funding). We have broadened our collaborative publication and research relationships to include Justin Stoler, among many others.  Moreover, under the direction of Sera Young, the collaboration has come together around the development of an cross culturally valid HWISE Scale.

HWISE collaborations, which have grown organically around ad-hoc workshops (funded by our respective institutions and institutes) and sponsored projects, now include over 40 scholars from 24 U.S. and international institutions across the career spectrum (post-doctoral researchers and early career scholars to middle and advanced researchers) and social science disciplines.  In short, our effort to date is only the beginning of a productive research collaborative network to advance conceptual and methodological frontiers in water security and environmental social science. Click here to learn more about the HWISE network guidelines and principles and how to join the network.

Recent collaboration on water sharing has resulted in two major publications:

  • Wutich, A., J. Budds, W. Jepson, L. Harris, E. Adams, A. Brewis, L. Cronk, C. DeMyers, K. Maes, T. Marley, J. Miller, A. Pearson, A. Rosinger, R. Schuster, J. Stoler, C. Staddon, P. Wiessner, C. Workman, S.L. Young. “Household Water Sharing: A Review of Water Gifts, Exchanges, and Transfers across Cultures.” Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews – Water doi:10.1002/wat2.1309.
  • Alexandra Brewis, Asher Rosinger, Amber Wutich, Ellis Adams, Lee Cronk, Amber Pearson, Cassandra Workman, Sera Young, and the HWISE Consortium*. 2019. “Water Sharing, reciprocity, and need: A comparative study of inter-household water transfers in Sub-Saharan Africa.” Economic Anthropology  DOI:10.1002/sea2.12143

See the video abstract of the WIRES Water paper below!