The Water Institute of the Gulf is celebrating a decade of connecting public, private, and academic knowledge to address some of the most pressing challenges facing Louisiana and coastal communities everywhere.





The Water Institute was founded in the wake of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Following those destructive storms, Louisiana leaders, led by former Senator Mary Landrieu and Garret Graves, then Chairman of Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA), decided it was time for a new approach in addressing water management and applied river-coastal research.

In a collaborative effort involving the State of Louisiana and the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, The Water Institute formed as a hub to connect academic, public, and private research partnerships and conduct applied research to support decision-making.

In the last 10 years, The Water Institute’s work has focused on projects such as Louisiana’s Coastal Master Plan, coordinating expert panels on the state’s diversion program, developing resiliency strategies for Houston, Charleston, and communities around Louisiana.

More recently, The Water Institute’s work includes a close partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on a variety of topics, developing a SmartPort for the lower Mississippi River, facilitating the state’s Climate Initiative Task Force, Blue Carbon quantification, and facilitating the Partnership for Our Working Coast in Port Fourchon.

In all, The Water Institute’s work focuses on bringing applied research and science-based decision support to decision makers and communities.

The team here at The Water Institute would like to thank all of our partners who have made the last 10 years so rewarding and look forward to the coming decades of collaboration in making a difference to the communities we serve

- Justin Ehrenwerth, President & CEO