Fall 2006 Course Description
Policy Research Project
||Groundwater Mangement in Texas
||P A 682A - Policy Research Project
|Day & Time:
||Tuesdays, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
|Waitlist Information:||For LBJ Students: UT Waitlist Information|
||Cross-list with GEO 391
This course fulfills requirements for the following specialization(s):
- Natural Resources and the Environment
- Public Management and Leadership
- Technology, Innovation, and Information Policy
- Urban and State Affairs
Description: Clients Texas Water Development Board, Sandia National Laboratory, and a number of Texas Groundwater District and Groundwater Management Areas.
This course is concerned with groundwater management in Texas. In 2005 the Texas Legislature passed and the governor signed laws that requires groups of Groundwater Districts (GDs), called ?Groundwater Management Areas? (GMAs) to plan for future water use. This is a new process in Texas and in the US, as it asks groundwater users to plan future withdrawals. To accomplish these tasks, a GMA may need to develop:
- a stakeholder process to involve water users in district or GMA decisions;
- approaches for converting stakeholder preference into inputs that can be used in groundwater management models;
- methods to integrate three-dimensional data collection and representation within a geographical region;
- models of groundwater behavior in the aquifer, so as to determine how demands will affect the aquifer;
- models of how surface precipitation interacts with surface structures to affect groundwater recharge and surface water quality;
- processes to allow coordination within GMA?s and between GMA?s to achieve public goals;
- approaches to making public decisions on groundwater management measures of performance of interest to stakeholders including: issue transparency, efficiency, effectiveness or equity; and
- cooperation among staff of the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB), GMA?s, GD?s, regional water planning groups, consultants, and citizens to provide information on implications of how potential groundwater management decisions could affect water users and their aquifers.
- flexibility to alter or modify the management plan as new information or technologies become available.
This course will teach students these and related topics over two semesters. Students will work closely with the TWDB as well as GD and GMA clients.
Class Activities:Student activities are likely to include: review of records of organizations; field investigations; interviews; mail surveys; and focus groups. Students may: (a) prepare training materials and use them; (b) write policy analyses that can be used by the clients; and (c) develop proposals for projects or investments. Students will be expected to prepare reports that are equivalent to those of professional consultants or research staff.
A student?s performance in the course will be evaluated based on her/his writing (90 percent) and participation in the class activities (10 percent).
Student groups will begin the class by developing proposals for the school year. The proposals will include background, issues, methods, outcomes, schedule, budget and management. For the remainder of the year the class activity will track the proposals.
UT/Austin Policy on Scholastic Dishonesty
?Students who violate University rules on scholastic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure in the course and/or dismissal from the University. Since such dishonesty harms the individual, all students, and the integrity of the University, policies on scholastic dishonesty will be strictly enforced. For further information, please visit the Student Judicial Services web site at: deanofstudents.utexas.edu/sjs/.
Grade Policy: Students who register for this course will receive grades on a scale with + and ? options: A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, etc. Grades will follow Graduate School rules.
Return to Fall 2006 Course Schedule