February 1, 2018: IRES Faculty Seminar
Speaker: Steve Conrad

IRES Seminar Series

Time: 12:30pm to 1:30pm (every Thursday)

Location: AERL Theatre (room 120), 2202 Main Mall



 Why people matter: including water user preferences in water policymaking


Water management models frequently draw on physical constructs to represent and conceptualize water system processes to inform policymaking. Yet these models often lack sufficient detail or draw assumptions about complex socio-hydrological interactions. My research highlights new approaches for the coupling of socio-economic research with hydrological models in order to simulate human-water system interactions. I will provide examples of how choice models can represent proxies of human behaviour for developing a coupled socio-hydrological model in the Okanagan region of British Columbia. I will end by highlighting how water user preferences have enhanced local planning processes and why people matter to future water policies of the Okanagan.


Dr. Conrad is a scientist and manager with over 25 years research, industry, and consulting experience. Steve has developed this experience through roles with private consulting, municipal engineering, and as a researcher and Associate Director of the Pacific Water Research Centre, Simon Fraser University. Dr. Conrad is now an Adjunct Professor in the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, University of British Columbia and serves on the Board of Directors for the American Water Works Association representing the BC Section. Steve’s research focus includes the water-energy nexus, municipal energy management, water supply and demand management, climate change adaptation, and the integration of social science theories with technical models to improve decision making.



Photo Credit: Jo Nicdao from flickr/ Creative Commons