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Water for Food Institute meets with International Visitor Leadership Program participants
On June 19, the Water for Food Institute had the opportunity to meet a diverse group of agriculture and food industry professionals from the U.S. Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program. Water for Food Institute Founding Executive Director Roberto Lenton introduced the group to the institute's research and programs to help ensure a more water and food secure world. Research and Outreach Coordinator Rachael Herpel gave them an overview of Nebraska water resources, referencing maps in the newly released policy report on Nebraska's Natural Resources Districts. Special thanks to IANR Global Engagement for organizing this wonderful event.

International Visitor Leadership Program

NOAA center to expand UNL's drought expertise
Brian Fuchs at Husker Harvest Days
A new Drought Risk Management Research Center will soon be established at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. "This will solidify a long-standing relationship between National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Integrated Drought Information System and the National Drought Mitigation Center," said Michael J. Hayes, Water for Food Institute Faculty Fellow. "The emphasis on research will help us address critical needs related to drought monitoring, impact assessment and planning strategies. One of our goals will be to help states and other entities learn from each other based upon what they have experienced, such as what is happening across the West right now, and become more resilient to droughts in the future." Learn more.

UNMC public health researchers study child obesity in Turkey
Ozgur Araz
Water for Food Institute Faculty Fellow Ozgur Araz (pictured) from the University of Nebraska Medical Center's College of Public Health will co-lead a one-year study with partners at Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey. The aim of the study is to better understand the factors associated with child obesity, along with parental perceptions and stigma ingrained in the Turkish culture. Learn more.

'Thirsty Land' film crew visits Nebraska
Mark Svoboda Thirsty Land interview
On June 22, the "Thirsty Land" documentary film crew visited Lincoln to interview experts at the University of Nebraska on issues related to the water crisis in the U.S., including Water for Food Institute Founding Executive Director Roberto Lenton and Faculty Fellows Mark Svoboda (pictured) and Don Wilhite. The following day they headed to western Nebraska, joining parts of the Nebraska Water Center's Water and Natural Resources Tour and visiting sites such as Valley Irrigation and the Monsanto Water Utilization Learning Center.

The public has an opportunity to support the film production on its IndieGoGo crowdfunding page now through June 30. Show your support.

Check for filming updates on Facebook and Twitter.

Wilhite delivers keynote presentation at drought workshop in Ghana
Don Wilhite Ghana visit May 2015
Climatologist and Water for Food Institute Faculty Fellow Don Wilhite participated in and delivered the keynote presentation at the 6th Regional Capacity Building Workshop on National Drought Management Policies throughout the week of May 4 in Accra, Ghana. The workshop was focused on Central and West African countries. Previous workshops have been held in Eastern/Central Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, South and Southeast Asia, Eastern and Southern Africa, and the Near East and North Africa. Learn more.

FAO report available on water, food security and nutrition
A new U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization report by the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition of the Committee on World Food Security explores relationships between water, food security and nutrition -- from household to global scales. The publication investigates these multiple linkages, in a context of competing demands, rising scarcities and climate change. It outlines ways to improve water management in agriculture and food systems, along with ways to improve water governance. Water for Food Institute Founding Executive Director Roberto Lenton served as a peer reviewer for the report, which was launched May 15 in Rome. Download the report.

On the blog

Sandra Zellmore Scotland
FAO, Water for Food Institute publish global yield gap analysis report
A new report reviews current methods for yield gap analysis, clarifying definitions and techniques to measure and model actual, attainable and potential yield at different scales in space and time and using case studies to illustrate different approaches. Co-authors include Water for Food Institute Faculty Fellows Ken Cassman and Patricio Grassini, as well as the institute's International Advisory Panel member Pasquale Steduto, among others. Read blog.
15th World Water Congress highlights water as a resource for global development
Water for Food Institute Faculty Fellow Sandra Zellmer reflects on the opportunities, challenges and constraints facing global water resources following her participation in the 15th World Water Congress in Edinburgh, Scotland last month. Read blog.

Upcoming events

Stockholm World Water Week
World Water Week 2015
World Water Week will take place Aug. 23-28 in Stockholm, Sweden. Organized annually by the Stockholm International Water Institute, the event brings together experts, practitioners, decision-makers, business innovators and young professionals from a range of sectors and countries to network, exchange ideas, foster new thinking and develop solutions to today's most pressing water-related challenges. Student interns from the Water for Food Institute will have a digital poster on display at this year's event showcasing videos about Nebraska's water resources. Learn more.

EPA-USDA National Workshop on Water Quality Markets
U.S. Department of Agriculture and Environment Protection Agency will co-sponsor a national workshop on water quality markets at Nebraska Innovation Campus Sept. 15-17. The event will be hosted by the Water for Food Institute at the University of Nebraska and coordinated by The Conservation Fund. The workshop will highlight recent progress in water quality trading across the country with an emphasis on policy, resources and tool development. The EPA and USDA will present their vision for the role of water quality markets in advancing conservation and water quality goals, and provide participants with the tools necessary to engage in water quality markets. The registration deadline is Aug. 14. Learn more.


Narendra Patel, doctoral student
Narendra Patel Narendra Patel is a doctoral student from India working with Nebraska Water Center Director Chittaranjan Ray through June 30. He is pursuing a PhD in civil engineering from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He completed his master's in civil engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, India.

Narendra's research is focused on studying flow and sediment transport in open channels. At the Water for Food Institute, he prepared a project report for the Department of Transportation in Hawaii and is working on several articles dealing with food security and bottlenecks in food production around the world.

Water funding opportunities

Fulbright Scholar Program - Core Program for U.S. Faculty and Professionals 2016-2017
Principal office: USA
The Fulbright Scholar Program invites applications from U.S. scholars for research, teaching and creative arts in an international context. Eligibility criteria include U.S. citizenship and a PhD or equivalent professional degree. The available openings include several in the developing world in subjects related to agriculture, environmental and biological sciences, geography and others.
Application deadline: Aug. 3

U.S. Agency for International Development - Conservation Partnerships in Brazil
Principal office: USA
USAID aims to create new partnerships in Brazil's Amazon region to support biodiversity conservation; protection of indigenous lands and natural resources; and applied biodiversity science, technology, and innovation. Potential partners in Brazil and the U.S. include foundations, NGOs, faith-based organizations, private businesses, business and trade associations, international organizations, colleges and universities, and government agencies.
Funding opportunity: APS-512-15-000001
Application deadline for concept papers (Portuguese, English):  Aug. 19
Award amount: USAID anticipates making two or three awards with total funding of US $2.5 million over five years

U.S. National Science Foundation - Geography and Spatial Sciences Program 2015
Principal office: USA
NSF funds an annual competition for research on the geographic distributions and interactions of human, physical and biotic systems on the Earth's surface. Projects on a variety of topics (U.S. and international) qualify for support if they offer promise of enhancing geographical knowledge, concepts, theories, methods and their application to societal problems and concerns. Past projects include several in the world's developing countries related to environmental disasters, waste management, marine spatial planning, wildlife conservation and others.
Funding opportunity: RFA 14-537
Application deadline for research proposals: Sept. 3
Award amount: $400,000 for a period of one to five years

Nebraska Environmental Trust
The Nebraska Environmental Trust was established in 1992 to conserve, enhance and restore the natural environments of Nebraska. The Trust especially seeks projects that bring public and private partners together collaboratively to implement high-quality, cost-effective projects. There are no restrictions on applicants or project sponsors as long as the project falls within the eligibility criteria.
Application deadline: Sept. 8
Award amount: no maximum established, for a period of three years

Additional funding opportunities may be found at grants.gov, a single access point for individuals to search competitive funding opportunities from more than 900 grant programs offered by the 26 federal grant-making agencies.

The Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Institute at the University of Nebraska was founded in 2010 to address the global challenge of achieving food security with less stress on water resources through improved water management in agricultural and food systems. We are committed to ensuring a water and food secure world while sustaining the use of water for other human and environmental needs.