Murray–Darling Water and Environment Research Program

View of the river with Red gums on the bank

The Murray–Darling Water and Environment Research Program is a 4-year, $20 million Australian Government initiative to strengthen scientific knowledge of the Murray–Darling Basin through generating new knowledge, innovation and tools across the themes of:

  • climate adaptation
  • hydrology
  • environmental outcomes
  • social, economic and cultural outcomes

Commonwealth partners (Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder, and Murray–Darling Basin Authority) will collaborate with a research consortium to deliver research that will benefit the Basin and its communities for years to come.

The overarching MD–WERP Research Consortium comprises two consortia:

  • CSIRO have established a consortium with Deakin University, Ewater and Alluvium to deliver research on the 2 themes of climate change and hydrology.
  • La Trobe University established a consortium with Griffith University, Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations, Murray Lower Darling Indigenous Nations and IDEEA Group. They are delivering research on environmental outcomes, and social, economic and cultural outcomes.

In 2021 researchers, water policy and water managers, along with First Nations, co-designed the research program to help ensure the research meets the needs of the end users.

More information and opportunities for engagement will be shared as the program continues.

Any enquiries can be sent to MDWERP@mdba.gov.au


Find out more

Find out more information in the Document Library.

The Research Prospectus provides the program overview, context for the four themes and the research questions, which have been further refined during the co-design process.

Follow the project page up in the righthand corner, and we'll provide you with updates.


Program partners' knowledge portal

For Commonwealth and Research Consortium collaborators, enter the program administration portal here.

(Please note if you're experiencing any issue signing in or you can't access the private portal, please email MDWERP@mdba.gov.au)


The Murray–Darling Water and Environment Research Program is a 4-year, $20 million Australian Government initiative to strengthen scientific knowledge of the Murray–Darling Basin through generating new knowledge, innovation and tools across the themes of:

  • climate adaptation
  • hydrology
  • environmental outcomes
  • social, economic and cultural outcomes

Commonwealth partners (Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder, and Murray–Darling Basin Authority) will collaborate with a research consortium to deliver research that will benefit the Basin and its communities for years to come.

The overarching MD–WERP Research Consortium comprises two consortia:

  • CSIRO have established a consortium with Deakin University, Ewater and Alluvium to deliver research on the 2 themes of climate change and hydrology.
  • La Trobe University established a consortium with Griffith University, Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations, Murray Lower Darling Indigenous Nations and IDEEA Group. They are delivering research on environmental outcomes, and social, economic and cultural outcomes.

In 2021 researchers, water policy and water managers, along with First Nations, co-designed the research program to help ensure the research meets the needs of the end users.

More information and opportunities for engagement will be shared as the program continues.

Any enquiries can be sent to MDWERP@mdba.gov.au


Find out more

Find out more information in the Document Library.

The Research Prospectus provides the program overview, context for the four themes and the research questions, which have been further refined during the co-design process.

Follow the project page up in the righthand corner, and we'll provide you with updates.


Program partners' knowledge portal

For Commonwealth and Research Consortium collaborators, enter the program administration portal here.

(Please note if you're experiencing any issue signing in or you can't access the private portal, please email MDWERP@mdba.gov.au)


  • MD-WERP Newsletter #1

    supporting image

    At the end of last year we released our first MD-WERP newsletter. It gives a great overview of the huge amount of achievements made in the program during 2021.

    To read the newsletter visit the Document Library.

  • Research plans update

    After months of co-design, the draft research plans for the four themes were submitted to the Governing Panel in early June. Most of the plans are now being finalised by the Commonwealth to confirm the priorities for 2021-22. This means research can begin for some projects this month.

    Some of the research projects are still under development, including research focused on improving the cultural, economic and social outcomes for First Nations people.

    The research plans have been shared and discussed with a broad range of users during development. The plans will also be reviewed annually, and ongoing co-design will ensure the research will deliver the expected outcomes and benefits for the Murray–Darling Basin.

  • Co-design update

    Commonwealth partners and the Murray-Darling Water and Environment Research Consortium are working collaboratively through a co-design process to identify the research focus for the four themes. End-User Advisory Groups have been established to provide advice from an end-user perspective on the research focus and its application within water management and policy.

    The program is engaging with the Advisory Committee on Social, Economic and Environmental Sciences (ACSEES), representatives from our Commonwealth partners and state jurisdictions and other stakeholders to help to ensure that we deliver research that will result in impact.


  • Inception workshop held

    The first inception workshop was held on 24-26th February.

    Over 50 participants from Commonwealth partners and Murray-Darling Water and Environment Research Consortium attended virtual workshops to develop a shared understanding of the vision, purpose and the expected outcomes of the strategic research program, including the research priorities.

    Both the Commonwealth and the Consortium presented their views on the research priorities and possible approaches for the four Theme areas.

    The workshop was a great start to commencing our 4-year collaboration.


Page last updated: 12 January 2022, 16:37