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Social Cost of Water Pollution Workshop

2024 Call for Abstracts

7th Annual Workshop on Integrated Assessment Models and the Social Costs of Water Pollution

October 2-4, 2024
Washington, D.C.

Abstracts Due June 15, 2024

EPA and other federal agencies require more complete, high-quality estimates of the benefits of improving water quality to support regulatory decision-making and policy planning. In addition to the needs driven by Presidential Executive Orders requiring economic analysis, the emerging effort to construct natural capital accounts for the U.S. will benefit from methodological and empirical improvements in measuring ecosystem services and connecting those services with economic values.

The goals of this workshop are to:

  • Continue to build a community of interdisciplinary scholars developing integrated biophysical and economic models that can support the quantification and economic evaluation of water quality improvements, and
  • Provide two-way communication between academic researchers and policy analysts, supporting a process of co-evolution of research projects and outcomes.

The workshop will be organized around a set of talks that are consistent with these goals. This year’s workshop will include a plenary session focused on recent and continuing developments in hydrology, ecology, and engineering modeling that can be valuable for nonmarket valuation efforts. A second plenary will focus on the recently introduced federal government “Frontiers of Benefit Cost Analysis” initiative and the activities of its working groups. The remainder of the workshop will be comprised of parallel sessions. All topics are welcome, but this year’s workshop will target papers addressing:

  • Expanding the set of water quality and associated ecosystem impacts that can be measured with biophysical models and monetized with economic methods (e.g., health, wildlife, and biodiversity effects).
  • Addressing the unique challenges of modeling water quality and ecosystem services in urban settings and the associated social welfare impacts.
  • New and continuing improvements in the availability of water quality data and other data that can be used to perform nonmarket valuation.
  • Metrics to address environmental justice and equity considerations.
  • Examples of fully integrated biophysical and economic valuation studies, particularly at regional or larger scales.

The workshop will be organized and supported by the U.S. EPA, the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability, the University of Wisconsin, and the University of Massachusetts. It will be held on October 2-4, 2024, in Washington, D.C.


Abstracts (1 page) should be sent to by June 15, 2024. Please note that in-person presentations will be required. Speakers and presenters will be reimbursed for their domestic travel expenses and accommodation. Attendees are encouraged to participate in a welcome reception on the evening of Oct 2nd. Additional questions regarding the workshop should be sent to the organizers at

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