The Karst Waters Institute is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit institution whose mission is to improve the fundamental understanding of karst water systems through sound scientific research and the education of professionals and the public. The result will be increased knowledge of the need for as well as the more effective management of this vital water resource.
The institute is governed by a Board of Directors and does not have or issue memberships. Institute activities include the initiation, coordination, and conduct of research, the sponsorship of conferences and workshops, and occasional publication of scientific works. KWI supports these activities by acting as a coordinating agency for funding and personnel, but does not supply direct funding or grants to individual researchers.
Advance scientific knowledge by fostering interdisciplinary state-of-the-art karst research to ensure a valid and reliable basis for information provided to both the public and private sectors and the scientific community, objectives under this goal:
- Develop a national karst library and data base that will provide accessibility to karst information.
- Establish a program of resident and visiting scientists to stimulate collaborative research.
- Develop or identify appropriate techniques and methods for karst research, based on studies of sufficient scale and duration, to advance our understanding of this vital resource.
Increase awareness and appreciation of karst water resources and their vulnerability through the education of both scientific professionals and the public. Objective under this goal:
- Publish the research of karst scientists in respected journals.
- Present research findings and the need for protection of karst resources through appropriate media channels for the public.
- Sponsor national and international conferences and symposia.
Identify and solve environmental and land-use risks to karst regions, including pollution of karst aquifers, flooding problems, and land-collapse and subsidence. Objectives under this goal:
- Cooperate with the public and private sectors on the prevention and solution of karst problems.
- Stimulate cooperative graduate education with degree-granting institutions to ensure an adequate supply of karst scientists for the future.