New ThinkND series to tackle global water crisis

Author: Colleen Wilcox

Ndi Thinknd Water Series Graphic

Notre Dame International (NDI), with support from its global network, is launching an interactive series on ThinkND that highlights the water crisis around the world. “Global Dialogues: Worsening Water Crisis” is a nine-part series; sessions will be held on select Wednesdays of the spring semester beginning February 9, 2022.

From Mumbai to Santiago, participants will travel virtually each week to a different location around the world to learn more about local research that's occurring through programs, partnerships, and engagement with local people, organizations, and governments.

“NDI is proud to facilitate this in depth examination of sustainability and in particular the urgency of the water crisis that we now face,” says Michael Pippenger, vice president and associate provost of internationalization.

“The University of Notre Dame, with faculty doing research across our Global Gateway and Center network that spans five continents and ten countries, is uniquely positioned to be a leader as we seek to embrace and live up to the call Pope Francis has sounded: to care for our common home.”

Faculty from Notre Dame, as well as University partner institutions, will be featured each week. The series will also showcase local case studies, which will be examined and discussed to help connect, educate, inspire, and motivate people to come together to solve this global issue.

“A series like this can draw important attention to the population explosion in Asia, as one of the most critical concerns impacting water and the vulnerabilities associated with the lack of adequate sources of freshwater for the foreseeable future for our planet,” says Krupali Krusche, associate dean for research, scholarship, and creative work and director of DHARMA (Digital Historic Architectural Research and Material Analysis) research team.

“Beyond the population explosion, issues like rising sea level around the globe are creating a major and urgent need to prepare design and engineering solutions that can help these cities survive this change in predicted water levels.”

Krusche will lead the “Impact of Rise in Sea Level in Mumbai” session on Wednesday, February 23, 2022 at 1:00 pm EST. Other sessions include:

  • Environmental Policy and governance in Nairobi, Kenya
  • Coastal Boulder Displacement on the West Coast of Ireland
  • The Water Crisis in Mexico City
  • Rivers and Tides: A Biography of the River Thames and The Sustainability of Rivers in London
  • Water Sustainability in Santiago, Chile
  • A New Parable for the Planet in Dublin
  • Offshore Energy and Climate Change, Jerusalem
  • Water, Soil, and Air, Rome

The goal of the series is to demonstrate the global impact of local interventions and projects, ultimately bringing people together to build a more sustainable and healthy future.

"It is of utmost importance that we work together across academic disciplines, national borders, and boundaries of every kind to address the water crisis in our world,” says Robert Dowd, C.S.C., vice president and associate provost for interdisciplinary initiatives.

“Our hope is that these conversations deepen our understanding of the water crisis in different parts of the world and also point to how we can work together more effectively in order to promote more sustainable practices and policies with regard to the use of water."

The program is free and open to all and is hosted exclusively on ThinkND, Notre Dame’s open, online learning community. Click here for more information and to register.

Originally published by Colleen Wilcox at on January 27, 2022.