Water defines our blue planet. Life in all forms depends on and has been shaped around water in the hydrologic cycle and the peculiarities of its local manifestations: Ecosystems are shaped by climate (rain, snow, fog, humidity), streams and lakes, floods and droughts, availability of soil moisture, springs, and oceans. Healthy drinking water is essential to modern life. Nearly half of agricultural production depends on irrigation water, on its availability and good quality. In addition to producing energy, energy production uses water for cooling and other purposes. Water is essential in many industrial processes.

Water has been harnessed and managed to make economic gains, improve health, and support ecosystems. With a burgeoning population, increased water demands, and often unconstrained use and misuse of water resources, the challenges to improve our understanding of water in and across its physical, chemical, climatological, geographic, geologic, pedologic, ecologic, management, and policy dimensions are more urgent than ever before. These challenges offer many opportunities in cross-disciplinary studies and learning - we invite you to join us in this adventure!

UC Davis has a tremendous wealth of existing and developing knowledge related to water in California, the United States, and around our planet. We offer our students, researchers, and teaching and extension faculty rich and diverse academic, research and social opportunities. Moreover, our campus is known for its exceptionally comprehensive graduate curriculum, world-class faculty and an atmosphere of collegiality and support in which ideas thrive and successful professional careers begin.

The academic year 2020-2021 will be a very special year for the entire Hydrologic Sciences community as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to move most of our instruction, group work, research collaborations, and many of our social interactions online. Laboratory work has continued under special precautions. We are lucky to have a creative family of teachers, researchers, students, and supporting staff that has found and continues to find ways to work around the inevitable constraints of the pandemic. It has brought us closer together in many  unexpected ways as we we support each other in meeting the many challenges of this time.


Best regards,

Thomas Harter

Dr. Thomas Harter, Chair Hydrologic Sciences,

Robert M. Hagan Endowed Chair in Water Management and Policy