Sustainable Water Management Certificate Program
The School of Continuing Education, in partnership with the Earth Institute and the Columbia Water Center, is offering a Sustainable Water Management Certificate. This new certificate equips professionals with the skills to conduct integrated water management and water systems analysis.
According to the United Nations Development Programme, nearly 900 million people lack access to safe water and over 2.7 billion lack access to basic sanitation. As the world’s population continues to grow in excess of 7 billion people, the demand for access to water has risen. At the same time, the impacts of climate change are making it more difficult to ensure the supply of safe water to the populations that need it most. Severe weather events ravage some parts of the world with floods, while devastating others with droughts. Skilled sustainability professionals are needed in order to create effective solutions to the world’s water problems. Students of this program leave equipped with skills to guide communities and companies in issues of water management.
The Sustainable Water Management Certificate program will cover concepts of hydrology, water policy and regulation, economics, finance and conflict resolution. It is designed to provide sophisticated and multidisciplinary training in water issues—the nexus of natural science, social science and public policy. The program teaches skills applicable to a wide-range of professions including urban planning, manufacturing, sanitation, and NGO professionals domestic and abroad.
Students will gain a fundamental understanding of the science of the hydrological cycle. They will learn best practices in water systems management, identifying who uses water, quantifying how much water is used, and optimizing how that water is used. Students will learn how to develop reliable water supplies given diverse sources and variability in climate and water quality. Water issues are not only a matter of managing systems. They are also economic and political in nature. Students of this program will learn the intricacies of water financing, how it is priced and how large-scale water projects are funded. Other topics that will be covered include policy mechanisms to determine water allocation and water rights, as well as access and privatization.
- Upmanu Lall
- Wade McGillis
Students complete three required courses focused on the science, policy, and management of water systems: The Science of Sustainable Water, Water Governance, and Water Systems Analysis. Students will complete one elective course, with elective offerings including water in agriculture, water quality and health, water and energy security, and urban infrastructure.
The curriculum of the Sustainable Water Management Certificate program has been designed by experts from the Columbia Water Center.
Courses are offered in the evening to accommodate the schedules of students working full-time. The certificate can be completed through part-time enrollment. Students enrolled on a part-time basis can complete the certificate requirements in as few as four semesters.
The Sustainable Water Management Certificate program can be taken as a compliment to the Masters of Science in Sustainability Management, or it can be taken separately as a stand-alone certificate.
Prospective students interested in learning about the program are encouraged to contact Allison Ladue, assistant director. To apply to Sustainable Water Management program, follow the Postbaccalaureate Studies program application instructions.
Office of Admissions
203 Lewisohn Hall
2970 Broadway, Mail Code 4119,
New York, NY 10027-6902.
Master of Science in Sustainability Management
For more information about this program and how to apply, please visit the program site.