The Water Desk’s mission is to increase the volume, depth and power of water journalism. We’re focusing on Western water issues and the Colorado River Basin—the lifeblood for some 40 million people and a $1.4 trillion economy.
The Water Desk is starting up at a pivotal moment for both journalism and water, not only in our home region but also around the world. Digital disruption and other forces are posing existential threats to media outlets just as climate change, population growth and other stressors are creating unprecedented challenges for managing our most precious natural resource.
The Water Desk will strengthen water journalism in a variety of ways:
- Support for journalists: We’ll provide funding, training and other resources to journalists and media outlets.
- Original content: Our own coverage will emphasize data, multimedia, explanatory, investigative and solutions-oriented journalism.
- Education and community engagement: We’ll work with students and others beyond the campus to advance learning, train the next generation of water journalists and engage the community.
The Water Desk launched this spring with support from the Walton Family Foundation. As a journalistic effort, The Water Desk maintains a strict editorial firewall between its content and funders. Likewise, The Water Desk has editorial independence from the University of Colorado Boulder, where we’re based at the Center for Environmental Journalism.
The Water Desk will work across platforms and will be looking for ways to support journalism through newspapers, magazines, websites, radio, podcasts, television, video and other media.
Because water is intertwined with so many issues, we’re interested in a broad spectrum of topics: climate change, biodiversity, public health, environmental justice, food, agriculture, drinking water, economics, business, recreation and more.
In short, The Water Desk will operate as a small news organization that also provides resources, training and other support to journalists, media outlets and students so that the public and policymakers are better informed about water.
Check out our about page and FAQs for more information about The Water Desk.