There can be no doubt that water is essential for life and for the development of our society. Water plays a major role in society, politics and the economy, and its management is one of the challenges that must be tackled in the twenty-first century. The fight against contamination, the call for rational water use, efforts to overcome shortfalls in supply and the forecast and management of extreme situations (droughts and floods) are all priorities that need professionals with the capacity and the criteria for action. The required actions range from highly specific aspects of local supply to involvement in European or international strategies. For this reason, and to improve interdisciplinary research and foster the process of university education reform, the University of Barcelona founded the Water Research Institute. The Institute strengthens the University's potential through specific structures and instruments devised to channel research and teaching in the field of water.
As a research organization structure and by virtue of Article 104.1.a of the UB statutes, the Water Research Institute (IdRA) aims to foster and support activities carried out by research groups on topics related to water management, uses and quality. The Institute is conceived as an agent that maximizes the University of Barcelona's research potential through research groups that study the field of water. The work is interdisciplinary and involves various faculties and courses.