Research projects

WRF seeking proposals for 20 new research projects

The Water Research Foundation (WRF) has announced that it is accepting proposals for 20 research projects, funded through the WRF Research Priority Program, to advance water science for communities of the whole world.

Half of the research project proposals are due by November 22, 2022, while half of the supply is due by December 13. Requests for Proposals for projects, with information on how to apply for funding, can be found at WRF website. Proposals must follow the WRFs Guidelines for Priority Research Program Proposals.

The foundation’s priority research agenda focuses on five key themes: efficient resource use and recovery, healthy communities and environment, resilient infrastructure, treatment optimization and scaling up, and utility operation and management.

The 20 new research projects will address high priority topics for the water sector, including management of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), risk management, equity, greenhouse gas emissions , innovative technologies, etc. Projects were selected for funding by the WRF Research Advisory Board, which reviews stakeholder views on the challenges and opportunities facing the water sector and approves the annual research agenda as part of of the priority research program.

“I’m excited about the work the Water Research Foundation is doing to answer the questions that many utilities face today,” said Yvonne Forrest, director of Houston Water and outgoing chair of the Research Advisory Council. “This list of projects represents many hours of work to ensure that the needs of this sector are met.”

Groups eligible to apply for research project funding include educational institutions, research organizations, utilities, government agencies, consulting firms, etc.

The titles of each of the open projects are as follows:

Proposals due November 22:

  • State of the science and regulatory acceptability of PFAS residue management options
  • Applicability of remote sensing technology for water quality monitoring and ecological assessment
  • Integration of climate change impacts into wet weather management, capital improvements and river system improvements
  • Preparing the Water Sector to Adopt Technology: Skill Sets and Approaches to Business Management in the Digital Age
  • Feasibility and applicability of emerging utility-led affordability innovations
  • Integrating equity and social dimensions into community-based climate adaptation planning and watershed management
  • Fate of microplastics in drinking water treatment plants
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Best Practices for the Water Sector Workforce
  • Improved risk management from condition assessment data
  • Innovative technologies to improve asset tracking

Proposals due December 13:

  • Evaluation of innovative and sustainable treatment options for biosolids
  • Cost-Effective Approaches to Controlling Multiple Constituents of Concern (CECs)
  • Feasibility of large-scale implementation of LED UV disinfection
  • Navigating One Water Planning Across Municipal Water Programs: Achieving Multiple Goals and Addressing Regulatory Challenges
  • Improving equity and environmental justice in asset management
  • Integration of wastewater-based epidemiology and clinical surveillance for public health and utility operations
  • Back to the Future: Guidance for Adaptive and Scenario-Based Procurement Planning Approaches
  • Beyond Net Zero: Advancing the Interdependencies Between Utility Greenhouse Gas Emission Reductions and the Water-Energy-Food Nexus
  • Establish industry-wide guidelines for water utility lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions inventories
  • Quantifying the impact of artificial intelligence/machine learning based approaches on utility performance