There’s not much we can say to fully capture the whirlwind of the last few weeks and what’s to come as we prepare and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Iowa Water Center staff is fortunate in that we can work remotely, continuing to advance water science to meet Iowa’s water resource needs. We applaud those who are doing their part to practice social distancing and are eternally grateful to those providing essential services outside the comfort and safety of their homes.
We will greatly miss hosting the Iowa Water Conference this year. We know that the conference is more than just a professional development opportunity – seeing each other face-to-face, provoking critical thought, and engaging in productive dialogue with our colleagues is an invaluable activity that is difficult to replicate virtually. At the One Water Summit in Austin, TX this past September, Pisces Foundation President David Beckman said something that resonated with us: “Relationships ARE infrastructure!” This statement is the crux of the work that we do.
To that end, we encourage you to stay connected with each other, and with us, over the coming weeks and months. We planned to use the conference hashtag #IowaWater2020 on Twitter and Facebook for the rest of the year in an effort to keep the conversation going. Now, we’ll use it as we introduce you to water scientists and practitioners, produce and promote virtual learning opportunities, and engage you in the water conversation all year long. We hope you will use it, too.
Our focus will remain on building a robust and connected water science community. We look forward to adapting and innovating during these challenging times.