'Water for Food' to Lay Groundwork for Nebraska Institute

Leading water experts from around the world will discuss the global challenge of growing more food with less water at The Future of Water for Food conference May 4, hosted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the University of Nebraska.

Jeffrey S. Raikes, chief executive officer of the Gates Foundation, will kick off the conference with a keynote address. Speakers and panelists throughout the day will discuss key issues in science, technology, policy, and the human dimensions of the use of water for agriculture.

Other speakers and their topics, include:

  • Simi Kamal, chair and chief executive of the Hisaar Foundation, the "Use of Water for Agriculture in Pakistan: Experiences and Challenges."
  • Peter Rogers, Harvard University, professor of environmental engineering, "The Role of Irrigation in Meeting the Global Water Challenge."
  • Robert Glennon, University of Arizona, Morris K. Udall professor of law and public policy, "America's Water Crisis and What to Do about It."
  • James Goeke, professor in UNL's School of Natural Resources, "Water -- Nebraska's Lifeblood."

The conference is expected to help lay the groundwork for a global water institute that university officials envision as an international center for research, education, and policy on the use of water for agriculture. The university-wide institute will be located at University of Nebraska-Lincoln and will involve faculty and students from across the university's four campuses.

"Bringing together experts from across the globe will help identify critical needs of both Nebraska and the world and provide an international perspective in fashioning a response," said UNL chancellor Harvey Perlman. "This is important to our role as a land-grant university and to our stature as an internationally engaged comprehensive research university."

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