Professor Robin Craig joined the U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Water, University of Utah as part of the Environmental Engineering Working Group. Her expertise and background in water law and the impact of climate change on freshwater resources will be a fantastic resource as the project moves forward.
Craig took a few moments to share some of what she is working on and her thoughts on the USPCASW.
Q: What other projects are you currently involved with?
A: I have a grant with the Socio-Ecological Synthesis Center (SESYNC) looking at adaptive water governance across the United States. We are starting by trying to assess the resilience in 7 or 8 basins. I am also finishing up a grant through the U comparing Marine protected areas in New Zealand and the U.S. and how they incorporate native people. I am also working on a water law book, a book on resilience, and rewriting several text books.
Q: What excites you about PCASW?
Trying to work with a completely different country and a completely different legal regime. A large part of my role is trying to figure out the law and policy part of it. To see if we can keep them from making some of the same mistakes we made, and hopefully get some more women involved in engineering over there. That’s a pretty big task when you think about it. I’m not a water engineer, so I’m hoping to learn a lot about it myself. In the next couple of weeks I’ll be taking a crack at a course on basically water policy and trying to figure out what they need to know.
Q: What challenges are you looking at and excited about working through on this project?
Well, just trying to figure out Pakistan’s water law system is going to be a challenge. Particularly because I don’t read any of the relevant languages and law doesn’t always translate well. It will be fun too, because that will feed into a comparative water law course I’m going to get to teach. And then figuring out how to approach policy in a country I don’t know at all.
Q: What’s your favorite water place?
In terms of the richness of the history and the law, the Colorado River. In terms of actually just going to enjoy the water aspect, I would have to say the numerous rivers in Oregon and Washington. It’s pretty and the water is always running and it’s just so soothing and green.
Q: Anything else?
I think this project is a wonderful idea. I think it’s going to take a long time, so it’s good it’s a longer term grant. And I think it will be interesting in both the good and the bad senses of the word to see what kind of hiccups we run into as we’re going along, because there will be some. I’m just king of jumping into it and seeing what happens.