LOGAN – Utah State University has created a series of Research Summits as a way to promote interactions between researchers on topics of current interest, spanning multiple colleges.

Each summit includes a panel discussion with experts from USU, and from outside USU, sharing ideas drawn from current research. Spring semester’s first summit dealt with energy, followed by a second summit on artificial intelligence.

Most recently, USU’s Office of Research organized a water summit on April 23.

Research Summit Series: Water

Panelists (from left to right) Burdette Barker, Courtney Flint, Connely Baldwin, and Bethany Neilson, speak during the Utah State University’s Research Summit about the importance of collaboration as Utah looks to secure its water future. (Credit: Aaron Fortin/USU).

Beth Neilson, professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Utah Water Research Lab, told that gathering that possibilities emerge when researchers come together to help resolve difficult local and statewide water issues.

Another panelist, Water Resources Engineer with Pacificorp Conley Baldwin, said when new water legislation was passed in recent years, he was surprised at how quickly it became law. He learned later it was the work of the Great Salt Lake Strike Team, comprised of Water Lab Director David Tarboton and several other USU researchers.

Burdette Barker, a USU assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, explained important partnerships like the Irrigation Innovation Consortium, which distributes grants to researchers.

Panelist Courtney Flint, professor in the Department of Environment and Society, said when more people come to the table to discuss water management, better and longer-standing decisions are made.

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