Special Sessions

The Call for Sessions for CWRA2023 is now closed.

Thank you for all your submissions!


The Canadian Water Resources Association is holding its next National Conference in Kjipuktuk / Halifax (Nova Scotia, Canada) June 18th – 21st, 2023. The conference theme is “Rising with the tide: working together to address water resource challenges”. To learn more, please visit our conference website at https://conference.cwra.org. We would like to invite regional and national experts to propose Special Sessions to support our conference theme related to the importance of collaborating on water related issues, and the increasing challenges and pressures we are facing across this sector. Potential topic areas for special sessions include but are not limited to:

  • Indigenous perspectives in water resources – incorporating indigenous knowledge and perspectives in water resources management, understanding challenges and opportunities
  • Nature-based solutions – approaches, barriers to implementation, potential paths forward
  • Flood mapping and flood forecasting – from development to implementation and how we work together to achieve overall flood management objectives in the face of increasing climate change risks
  • Challenges and responses to climate change impacts on water availability – multi-stakeholder approaches, incentivization of water sharing and collaboration in times of drought, innovative approaches and communications
  • Aquatic species at risk, including Atlantic Salmon, species-specific conservation approaches and their successes and challenges, value in collaboration across NGOs, Indigenous groups, and other stakeholders
  • Where the river meets the sea – management of water resources at the freshwater/marine interface, roles and responsibilities, and challenges that exist from a changing climate
  • Transboundary water management – governance, conflict resolution, and moving forward effectively in face of increasing pressures

Proposals for sessions or technical workshops can be sent to cwra2023@cwra.org by DECEMBER 2nd, 2022.

The proposal should include a brief description of the session or workshop and a list of potential speakers. Technical workshop proposals should include estimated costs (registration fees and cost to run). The organizers of special sessions will be responsible for encouraging colleagues to submit abstracts to the session, deciding which speakers are assigned an oral presentation or a poster, and chairing the special session at the conference. We look forward to hearing from you! If you’d like to discuss this call for sessions further or have any questions related to the above, please do not hesitate to reach out to the email address listed above.

Please click the buttons below to download the Call for Sessions details

* Please note: The pdf states the OLD call for sessions deadline

Special Session on Adaptive Management of Water Resources

Organized by Kim Hyatt, Wendy Leger and Clint Alexander

Adaptive Management (AM) is a rigorous approach to environmental management that allows learning through deliberately designing and carrying out management actions as experiments to learn how the system responds to management and to increase the level of certainty regarding how best to achieve desired results (Walters 1986). AM incorporates:

  1. Explicit articulation of hypotheses
  2. Design of management experiments to test these hypotheses,
  3. Monitoring of outcomes to refine hypotheses,
  4. Creation of new knowledge and,
  5. An accelerated rate of learning to advance management of complex systems.

AM is commonly recommended when dealing with highly imperfect knowledge of how to manage multiple classes of competing objectives (e.g. conservation, exploitation, restoration of aquatic resources) despite uncertainty about the best course of action to achieve balanced outcomes under the influence of highly complex process interactions.

Given the attributes noted above, AM is increasingly more difficult to design, implement, assess and refine along the spatial continuum from local to global scale (e.g. local streams, regional watersheds, global hydrosphere).

A special session is being planned during the 2020 CWRA Conference where 4-5 AM case studies will be used to take stock of the state of development, application and observed utility of AM among aquatic resource managers working at a variety of spatial and temporal scales from local streams to major watersheds and river basins in Canada.

In addition, the intent is to also assemble these case studies into a special issue of the Canadian Water Resources Journal. We look forward to your participation in this special session.

Special Session on Lake Winnipeg

By surface area, Lake Winnipeg is the 6th largest lake in Canada and the 11th largest in the world. The lake is a valuable freshwater resource that supports subsistence, commercial and angling fisheries, and is one of the largest hydroelectric reservoirs in the world. Excessive nutrient loading from multiple transboundary sources, including agriculture, municipal wastewater, and urban surface runoff, continues to exceed Lake Winnipeg’s natural processing capacity, resulting in more frequent and severe algal blooms. Over 50% of the nutrient loading comes from upstream jurisdictions, with the largest contribution via the Red River from Minnesota and North Dakota.

Over the past twenty years significant efforts have focused on better understanding the state of the lake and the drivers that influence the aquatic ecosystem. Changes in the hydrological regime, nutrient loading, and the presence of invasive species have all influenced the state of the lake. This special session will focus on research efforts aimed at better understanding the impacts to the lake and various initiatives that are underway to improve the ecological health of the lake and its basin.

Submit a Proposal for a Session or Workshop

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  • The dates of the conference are May 26-29, 2019.
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