Thirsty for global
ccess to freshwater will soon be the major impetus for change in cities and for industry across the globe, says scientist David Garman. And he should know.
It offers an interdisciplinary approach, blending modern aquatic sciences with expertise from UWM’s College of Engineering & Applied Science, the Department of Economics and the School of Public Health.
Garman, the founding dean of UWM’s graduate-level School of Freshwater Sciences, came to Milwaukee from a parched Australia, where residential water restrictions are a part of people’s everyday lives.
Garman sees the school playing a role in economic development, from providing a specialized workforce to helping businesses tap into an exploding market for water solutions.
“The school should help position Milwaukee as a city of the future— one that is largely sustainable with its industries, water management, environmental footprint and energy,” he says. “It means a better lifestyle for all its inhabitants.”
RESEARCH REPORT 2012
Garman says his role is to usher Milwaukee toward that future and to amplify the city’s voice in the global discussion on freshwater. Through the school’s new Center for Water Policy, he will foster ties with Stockholm and Singapore, two recognized leaders in water policy.
Built on a half-century of Great Lakes research, the School of Freshwater Sciences is the only graduate school in the nation dedicated solely to the study of freshwater issues.
He spent the last nine years directing the Environmental Biotechnology Cooperative Research Centre in New South Wales, a public-private incubator connecting researchers, engineers and industry officials to stimulate new sustainable technologies. Trained as a chemist, his experience includes projects as diverse as improving safe water services in Bangladesh and remediating eutrophic lakes in China. He also was chairman of a publicly listed water company and owned a water-tech business. He is busy assembling an international review board for the school and has identified multiple research projects to expand, including those related to Great Lakes genomics, urban aquaculture and new sensors that work in water. And in five years’ time, Garman projects the school will turn out between 50 and 100 master’s and Ph.D. graduates —including some from water hubs Stockholm and Singapore.