About Us

advancing the science of water ®

Who We Are

The Water Research Foundation (WRF) is the leading research organization advancing the science of all water to meet the evolving needs of its subscribers and the water sector. WRF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, educational organization that funds, manages, and publishes research on the technology, operation, and management of drinking water, wastewater, reuse, and stormwater systems—all in pursuit of ensuring water quality and improving water services to the public.

WRF was formed in 2018 through the integration of three highly respected research collaboratives: WateReuse Research Foundation, Water Environment Research Foundation, and Water Research Foundation. Separately, these organizations focused on research to support varied segments of the water sector—water reuse, wastewater and stormwater, and drinking water, respectively. Now a One Water organization, WRF delivers the research programming the sector needs to address the most pressing water issues holistically.

Artificial dam with flowing water

Our Purpose

To advance the science of water to improve the quality of life for all communities.

Our Vision

The science and knowledge we generate allow the water sector to provide high-quality, safe, accessible, and affordable water services that contribute to healthy, resilient communities and a sustainable global environment.

Our Mission

To help our subscribers discover opportunities and solve problems by delivering actionable water research to meet the needs of the communities they serve.

  • We partner with our subscribers and the water community to develop and advance our research agenda.
  • We produce the highest quality research and provide resources for our subscribers to put that research into action.
  • We maintain our position as a trusted, independent source of water science.

Our Outcomes

  • There’s continuous improvement in utility operations (what they do and how they do it).
  • The knowledge we develop is applied across the water sector.
  • We’re prepared for the next opportunities and challenges.
  • There’s strong trust and confidence in us, our outputs, and our community.

Our Values

We explore in all directions.

We create space to explore up and down the organization, across and outside our sector, through new ideas and by building on past achievements, and from failure to success so we can improve and grow. We explore approaches before settling on a solution. We bring our findings back to further our work.

We design for timeliness.

We proactively address research needs and future challenges. We streamline processes and access to information. We’re flexible and agile while maintaining essential guardrails that ensure our work meets our requirements and remains of the highest quality

When we speak, we strive to put ourselves in the other person’s shoes.

We provide a safe space for people to contribute, and we listen actively and think carefully about how the other person will hear what we say. We’re considerate of other people’s perspectives and experiences so we can both include and support them. We appreciate they may have context we do not. We empower each other to self-advocate while respecting each other’s roles.

We complete quality work.

We hold our work to high standards while acknowledging the human element. Doing so enables us to keep lives in balance and still deliver the outstanding work that moves the water sector forward.

We’re in this together.

We seek new and diverse perspectives, and both remove barriers and provide support to
facilitate participation. We believe everyone brings something valuable to the table. We
achieve workable solutions for all through understanding, creativity, and practicality.

Annual Report

Each year, WRF delivers the research that matters most to the water sector. Learn about WRF’s 2022 successes in our Year in Review issue of Advances in Water Research and our financial and volunteer summary.

> 2022 Year in Review

Strategic Plan

View WRF's 2023–2025 strategic plan to learn about our priorities in advancing the science of water.