APAH: Applied Policy Advisory in Hydrosciences

Water use and food production are strongly linked because irrigated agriculture is the primary consumer of global fresh water resources accounting for ~90% of fresh groundwater consumption over the last century. Similarly, a large amount of energy is linked for production of both safe water and food. We are a multi-disciplinary team, with core group at IIT Kharapgur.            

We use a combination of state-of-art earth-observation and geoscientific techniques, in combination of statistical, econometric, big data analytics and AI studies for up-to-date assessment of impact of policy research for last two decades on sustainable development of water resource, the critical component of the sustainable development goals.

State-of-art data science and techniques as well socio-culturally sensitive tools and strategies are used in estimating future water resource and evolving policy vis-à-vis management strategies under changing land use, agricultural, urban, climatic scenarios. Long-term communication strategies are being developed for knowledge and information flow from government agencies to stakeholders across national, state and local scales. Exploration of trans-boundary groundwater security issues also forms important aspects of our work. Some of the highlighted work done through this consortium includes:

•  Impact of policy interventions (e.g. MNREGA, Jyotigram Project etc.) on groundwater rejuvenation in parts of India { }

•  Importance of integrating science in groundwater management policies { }

• Ganga river drying due to pervasive groundwater abstraction {}

• Sanitation and economic development impact on groundwater pollution and human health {}

• Groundwater pollution due to pumping across transboundary river basins {}


Thrust areas include includes:

 (a) Developing up-to-date spatio-temporal groundwater level changes

(b) Quantification of governance strategies and their influence on groundwater on national and state-scales,

(c) Suggesting priorities on water resource management

(d) Highlighting the impact of groundwater usage across the country,

(e) Carry out science based research in critical evaluation and developing policies

(f) Understanding extent and causal relationships of water pollution to natural processes, economics, social architecture and human health

Beside the HydroIIT group, members includes

Prof. Sudeshna Sarkar (AI and Big Data Analytics), Computer Science and Engineering and AI Center

Prof. Probal Sengupta (Near-Surface Geophysics), Geology and Geophysics

Prof. Sidhartha Chattopadhyay (Macro Economics), Humanities and Social Sciences

Prof. Jenia Mukherjee (Hydrosociology), Humanities and Social Sciences

Dr. Soumendra Bhanja (Regional Hydrology), IISC Bangalore

Dr. Srimanti Duttagupta (Environmental Science and Engineering), San Diego State University