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Two water experts from UT will be panelists at this month’s Southeastern Conference Academic Conference.

The conference will take place March 27-28 at Mississippi State University and will feature researchers and academic leaders representing all 14 SEC institutions. The theme of this year’s conference is “The Future of Water: Regional Collaboration on Shared Climate, Coastlines and Watersheds,” which highlights collaboration in research across universities.

Chris Wilson, research assistant professor in UT’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, will represent UT on a panel about environmental hydrology. Dayton Lambert, associate professor in UT’s Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, will be a panelist for a session on food-energy-water nexus.

Increased climate variability and water demand are bringing water issues to the forefront of research discussion, conference organizers said. Drought, declines in aquifers used for irrigation, and sea-level rise are among core topics of interest.

The conference is designed to stimulate communication and collaboration toward sustainable and resilient water resource management in the Southeast, with overarching themes to include shared inland waters and aquifers, coastlines, climate, and regional policy.

In addition to faculty members representing the 14 SEC institutions, several governmental organizations, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the US Department of Agriculture, the US Geological Survey, and the Environmental Protection Agency, also will be represented at the conference.

The SEC Academic Conference represents an expanded slate of academic programming currently supported by the Southeastern Conference. The on-campus event is expected to showcase SEC university research in areas of critical importance within the region and around the nation. SECU is the academic initiative of the SEC, and it serves as the primary mechanism through which the collaborative academic endeavors and achievements of SEC universities are supported and advanced.

Visit the conference website for a complete conference agenda and registration information.