01 January 2016

William J. Cosgrove to return to IIASA as Interim Water Program Director

While IIASA is in the process of hiring a new permanent Director of the Water Program, Dr. William J. Cosgrove will return to IIASA as Interim Water Program Director.

Dr. William (Bill) Cosgrove was the originator of the Water Futures and Solutions Initiative which is the flagship project of the Water Program.

He has recently been selected to be named one of “50 Most Impactful Leaders in Water & Water Management” at the World CSR Congress at Taj Lands End, Mumbai in February. Below please find a detailed biography of Bill.

Bill has been one of the main authors of the recently published interim reports on the Water Futures and Solutions Initiative. Read the reports here.

We look forward to having him with us in the Water Program for the next few months!

Biography of William J. Cosgrove


William J. Cosgrove received his B. Eng. and M. Eng. and Honorary Doctorate of Science from McGill University. He has followed other graduate courses in economics, management and cross-cultural studies. Bill was a Senior Research Scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis and Project Director of the Water Futures and Solutions Initiative. He was a member of the Gulbenkian Foundation Think Tank on Water and Humanity. He is Chair of the Board of the Water Economics, Policy and Governance Research Network (Canada) and invited lecturer in Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) at McGill University.


Mr. Cosgrove is a former Vice President of the World Bank, Past-President of the World Water Council and served as Chairman of the International Steering Committee of the Dialogue on Water and Climate. He was Content Coordinator for the 3rd edition (2009) and Senior Advisor for the 4th edition (2012) of the United Nations World Water Development Report. From 2005-2008 he was President of the Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement in Québec. He is a member of the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec and of the Association of Professional Futurists.


His most recent publications include: Water management: Current and future challenges and research directions (with Daniel P. Loucks) AGU Water Resources Research; Foresight as a Tool in Water Resource Development in  “Development”, Society for International Development, SID Journal; Water Futures: The Evolution of Water Scenarios, COSUST and The Dynamics of Global Water Futures: Driving Forces 2011–2050 (UNESCO).

He also was co-author of World Water Vision: Making Water Everybody's Business; and Water Security and Peace: A Synthesis of Studies prepared for UNESCO under the Potential Conflict to Cooperation Potential (PCCP) - Water for Peace process and author of Public Participation to Promote Water Ethics and Transparency in Water and Ethics and ‘Water for Growth and Security’ in World Water Crisis: Myth or Reality?



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Last edited: 23 December 2015

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