WEES Works to Spur Collaboration

WEES is Dedicated to Collaboration

Cross-campus collaboration is one of the pillars of the TRIF-WEES mission. Innovative ideas do not originate in isolation, they take a community of knowledge and skill sets to come to fruition. Our goal at WEES is to enhance the grant competitiveness and creativity of the research by promoting a diverse and strong community. WEES sees itself at the center of the large community of researchers here at the University of Arizona in the fields of water, energy and the environment and is working hard to bring these researchers together. 

Since 2015, WEES has been actively promoting collaboration through a variety of events that focus on networking, engagement, sharing early research ideas, and building collaboration across departments.  Some of these are large networking events used to introduce faculty to WEES and some of the research successes made possible by TRIF-WEES funding, while others are small luncheons or research critique opportunities.  Learn more below. 

Research concept meeting

WEES Research Concept Meetings

The WEES Research Concept Meetings bring together the expertise of the WEES Executive committee and Director for the benefit of early career faculty at the University of Arizona. We held these meetings in April 2017 and February 2018.  Each time, researchers are invited to provide a 2-slide, 5-minute presentation on their research topic, and are offered ideas for collaboration. At these meetings, the researchers can also locate potential research partners and discuss future grant opportunities. Feedback from participants has been excellent. It is a great opportunity to daylight new ideas and learn about the potential for funding through the RDI Research Advancement grants.

Past Events

Tuesday, April 25, 2017, 8:30am - 10:00am
Sol Resnick Conference Room
Water Resources Research Center



Laura A. Bakkensen, Asst. Professor, School of Government & Public Polic
Sharon B. Megdal, WEES Director and the Water Resources Research Center Director
Mark Verhougstraete, Asst. Professor, College of Public Health
Joseph Blankinship, Asst. Professor, Dept. of Soil, Water, & Environmental Science
Courtney Crosson, Asst. Professor, Architecture, CAPLA
Philip Stoker, Asst. Professor, Planning, CAPLA
Vicky Karanikola, Asst. R. Professor, Dept. of Chemical and Environmental Engineering
Krishna Muralidharan, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering
Srini Raghavan, Professor, Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering
Benjamin Lepley, Asst. Lecturer & Studio Coordinator, Architecture, CAPLA

Monday, February 19, 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Sol Resnick Conference Room
Water Resources Research Center



Luke McGuire, Assistant Professor Department of Geosciences
Paul Carini, Assistant Professor Soil Water and Environmental Science
Jaeheon Lee, Associate Professor Department of Mining and Geological Engineering
Jia Hu, Assistant Professor School of Nat. Res. and the Environ.
Ali Behrangi, Associate Professor Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences
Ben Lepley, Assistant Lecturer College of Architecture, planning and landscape architecture
Jacob Petersen-Perlman, Research Analyst Water Resources Research Center.
William (Bill) Smith, Assistant Professor School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Andrea Achilli, Assistant Professor Chemical & Environmental Engr

WEES/IE Connection Luncheons (2018-2019)

The WEES Connection luncheons emerged from a survey sent out to researchers in Fall 2018. This survey showed that researchers of very different background were grouping around very specific problems. WEES established these luncheons as a means of bringing these groups together with the hopes of spurring cross-campus collaborations. 3 luncheons are currently scheduled for the Spring 2019 semester with at least 2 more planned for the Fall 2019 semester. The Spring 2019 topics include:

WEES connection luncheon

WEES Connection Luncheon, April 2019

  • Built Environment & Environmental Quality and Human Health Consequences

    Tuesday, March 26, 2019, 11:00am - 12:30pm
    ENR2, Room N595



    Ryan Bartelme, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Soil, Water & Environ Sci.
    Matt Bigler, Graduate Assistant for the WEES Program; Degree Program - Soil, Water & Environ Sci
    Barbara Bryson, Associate Dean, Academic Affairs-Research; Professor of Practice, Architecture
    Jennifer Duan, Professor, Civil Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
    Chuck Gerba, Professor, Soil/Water and Environmental Science
    Jin Hongyue, Assistant Professor, Systems and Industrial Engineering
    Kevin Lansey, Professor, Civil Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
    Itzel Marquez Hernandez, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Chemical & Environmental Engr.
    Alison Meadow, Associate Research Scientist, Institute of the Environment, Adjunct, SWES
    Jacob Petersen-Perlman, Research Analyst, Water Resources Research Center
    Alix Rogstad, Project Director, Sustainable Bioeconomy Arid Regions Center, CHEE
    Phillip Stocker, Assistant Professor, Landscape Architecture / Planning
    Claire Zucker, Associate Director, Water Resources Research Center; Program Director, WEES
    Adriana Zuniga, Senior Lecturer for the Sustainable Built Environments, CAPLA

  • Informatics/Modeling/Remote Sensing & Water

    Wednesday, April 10, 2019, 12:00pm - 1:30pm
    Marshall Bldg., Room N531



    Rick Bennett, Professor, Geosciences
    Matt Bigler, Graduate Assistant for the WEES Program; Degree Program - Soil, Water & Environ Sci
    Dominic Bocelli, Department Head of Civil and Architectural Engineering and Mechanics
    Jianqiang Cheng, Assistant Professor, Systems and Industrial Engineering
    Courtney Crosson, Assistant Professor, Architecture
    Chuck Gerba, Professor, Soil/Water and Environmental Science
    Bo Guo, Assistant Professor, Hydrology / Atmospheric Sciences
    Kevin Lansey, Professor, Civil Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
    Euan McLeod, Assistant Professor, Optical Sciences
    Judith Su, Assistant Professor, Biomedical Engineering
    Wim Van Leeuwen, Professor, Natural Resources and the Environment
    Hao Helen Zhang, Professor, Mathematics
    Xubin Zeng, Professor, Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences
    Claire Zucker, Associate Director, Water Resources Research Center; Program Director, WEES

  • Food & Environmental Quality and Human Health Consequences

    Tuesday, April 16, 2019, 11:00am - 12:30pm
    ENR2, Room 604



    Matt Bigler, Graduate Assistant for the WEES Program; Degree Program - Soil, Water & Environ Sci.
    Kirk Dimond, Assistant Professor, Landscape Architecture
    Chuck Gerba, Professor, Soil, Water, and Environmental Science
    Zack Guido, Program Manager, IRAP
    Roberto Guzman, Professor, Chemical and Environmental Engineering
    Raina Maier, Interim Director, Institute of the Environment
    Jean McLain, Assistant Dean, Faculty Advancement
    Kelly Reynolds, Professor, Public Health
    Chris Scott, Director, Udall Center
    Marc Verhougstraete, Assistant Professor, Public Health
    Claire Zucker, Associate Director, Water Resources Research Center; Program Director, WEES

WEES Engagement and Networking Events

In 2017, WEES held two campus-wide engagement events, with the purpose of educating faculty about funding opportunities and showcasing how investments have accelerated and catalyzed research at UA. The Winter event, Funding for Research and Equipment, included presentations from the Senior Vice President for Research Dr. Kimberly Espy and the WEES Director Dr. Sharon Megdal followed by 10-minute and one-minute Flash presentations highlighting how TRIF-WEES funding impacted research direction and funding success over the past several years. The Fall engagement event included presentations about seven TRIF-WEES supported centers: ALEC - Arizona Laboratory for Emerging Contaminants, Biosphere 2, CESM - Center for Environmentally Sustainable Mining. IES - Institute for Energy Solutions, IE - Institute of the Environment, WEST - Water & Energy Sustainable Technology Center, and the WRRC – Water Resources Research Center. Both events included time for informal networking to encourage the development of new collaborations at UA 

WEES networking events

Past Events

Monday, October 9, 2017, 3:30pm - 5:00pm
University of Arizona Student Union
Santa Rita Room




Leif Abrell
Raina Maier
Sharon Megdal
Julie Neilson
Kim Ogden
Kim Patten
Robert Stea
Peter Troch
Claire Zucker



Mark Brusseau
Paul Carini
Xiquan Dong
Ty Ferre
Jim Field
Gregg Garfin
Chris Harig
Adam Henry
Kerri Hickenbottom
Gregory Hodgins
Kathy Jacobs
Janelle Lamoreaux
François-Michel Le Tourneau
Luke McGuire
Thomas Meixner
Laura Meredith
Guo-Yue Niu
Rob Root
Daniel Scheitrum
Chris Scott
Stephanie Sikora
Philip Stoker
Betsy Woodhouse
Victor Baker
Gregg Garfin
Lloyd LaComb
Marc Verhougstraete
Ann Youberg
Xubin Zeng
Krishna Muralidharan
Andrew Zaffos


Water network

The University of Arizona Water Network: creating a space for water research

The University of Arizona is a leading institution when it comes to water resource research and policy. WEES created the University Of Arizona Water Network to highlight the water research occurring here at the U of A and to provide a resource for researchers, students, and community members. The website is broken into five major themes: Drought and Climate, Environmental Systems, Management and Policy, Society and Culture, and Technology and Industry. Alongside the major themes, the UA Water Network provides a comprehensive directory of water experts with descriptions and research focus, information about upcoming water seminars, as well as an up-to-date survey of jobs and academic funding opportunities in the field of water.  

The Water Network also periodically provides a newsletter that highlights important water-related events and information. You can also find the Water Network on Twitter @UAWATERNETWORK.

Join the UAWN ListServ