Maintaining hydraulic and geopolitical balance on the Indian subcontinent

In 1960, Pakistan and India signed the Indus Waters Treaty of 1960, which had been brokered by the World Bank to equitably redistribute waters of the Indus River and its tributaries between the two countries. The water dispute had its roots in the Partition of 1947 which had  delimited India and Pakistan along religious lines, …

Not long ago, when it was still possible to visit an archive …

The young man in the airplane next to me, who I later learn is a student at a small Christian university outside of Denver, is clearly suffering from a serious upper respiratory infection, and just as clearly lacks even the most basic supplies for dealing with it. After he resorts to blowing his nose into …

Scribbling inclusion into the International Hydrological Decade

1964 was an exciting time for hydrology. Preparations for the International Hydrological Decade (1965-1974) were underway at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris and in countries worldwide, in the hope of creating a truly international scientific cooperation effort in the field of hydrology. Water, advocates of the IHD believed, was something all countries—developed and developing—could get behind. …

Recalling Grove Karl Gilbert at the 2019 AGU Fall Meeting

The Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Society is a gargantuan affair that brings upwards of 25,000 earth and environmental scientists together for a week of presentations and conversations. The only way to make a meeting on this massive scale manageable is to divide it into smaller slices. In fact, one of the first decisions …

Diving into the history of the water sciences

Over the next months and years, this website will be updated with the results of a National Science Foundation-funded research project at the University of Pennsylvania on the history of fluvial geomorphology—the scientific discipline that seeks to explain how running water shapes and reshapes the surface of the Earth. The project focuses on the ways that new …