Global Water Institute

World leaders in water research, education, innovation and sustainability.

View of ocean above and below with and island in the background

The Global Water Institute (GWI) is a world leader in water research, innovation and problem solving. We have created the nation’s most advanced water knowledge hub driven by the urgent need to protect this essential resource. The Institute draws on the expertise of 13 research centres and facilities to bring a truly multi-disciplinary approach to the complex challenges and opportunities facing water and related sectors worldwide.

We strive to be a world leading centre for research, capacity building and sharing of water knowledge, technologies and expertise, informing and connecting research to smart water policy and management, and facilitating sustainable outcomes from water use.


Solving global water issues

Leading with an inter-disciplinary approach to the complex challenges and opportunities facing water and related sectors worldwide.

Excellence in water education

UNSW-GWI is a large community of passionate academics and researchers with strong links and partnerships with government and industry.

Over 400 researchers, professional staff & PhD candidates

Providing opportunities for members of the UNSW water community to participate in, and contribute to, high-impact projects and programs.

Our impact

Water governance and security

This area drives equitable water management to ensure just and sustainable outcomes for towns, agriculture and the environment. The work focuses on and building resilient and sustainable communities, improving water quality, alleviating poverty and reducing conflict.

Healthy Oceans and Resilient Coastlines

We focus on activities to protect ecosystems and infrastructure at the intersection of marine and freshwater environments. A key priority is identifying and adapting to anthropogenic threats including storm surge, sea level rise and pollution. 

Safe Water: Access and Equity for All

Our activities are linked to Sustainable Development Goal 6, which aims to achieve water and sanitation for all by 2030. Projects are focused on the intersection of engineering, environmental humanities and public health disciplines where culturally appropriate approaches are co-designed to reduce disease and improve quality of life. 

Engage our expertise

Here at GWI, our scope is incredibly broad — from cutting-edge innovations to best practice engineering design and everything in between.

Our expertise is grouped into seven categories containing 40 key capabilities. You can learn more about these by downloading our Capability Statement.

If you would like to chat about a water related issue or discuss a service, project or collaboration, please contact us and one of our experts will get back to you.

Study with us

UNSW Sydney ranks among the top 50 universities globally, with more than 65,000 students and a research community of over 6,000.

Water at UNSW is taught as a cross-cutting discipline, through a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses embedded in science, engineering, law and arts. 

Our people

UNSW-GWI was initiated in January 2016. The Institute has a membership of over 400 researchers, professional staff and PhD candidates spanning seven faculties and a dozen research centres. Explore our team to find out more.

Ways to connect