Rivers, Flows and People Working Group


Qualify and quantify the importance of nature’s share of the water (“environmental flows”) that safeguarding river health, biodiversity and the human livelihoods that depend on them, under conditions of intensification of demand and increasing water insecurity.


  • Build institutional bridges across disciplines and water resource fields to foster a community to spearhead more effective, cross sciences integration in environmental flows, synthesise experience and knowledge, and promote novel, transdisciplinary approaches.
  • Influence international development policy and local management practice so as to address the pressing issue of sustainability in water management and decision making.
  • Strengthen the public commitment to a new approach to environmental flows and broaden the constituency for the sustainable management of rivers.




Rivers are both social and ecological systems important for the wellbeing of millions of people, cities and repositories of precious natural capital and biodiversity. Knowledge of human dependencies on environmental flows is poor. In response, the working group will bring together natural scientists with experience in environmental flow assessment and social scientists studying the relationships between basin ecosystems, human communities, and their values, cultures, livelihoods and institutions.

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