Priorities and Practices

Water Table

The Water Table’s priorities were first outlined in the 2016 Toward Water Sustainability: A Blueprint for Philanthropy. Since then, the goals, strategies, and initiatives that are the focus of the Water Table’s work have evolved thanks to ongoing input from members and partners.

The Table’s systemic priorities are critical for durable and scalable change. They simultaneously represent stand-alone field-level objectives and considerations for how we advance the situational priorities:

  • Elevate a shared vision, guided by the field, for which we and our partners strive together.
  • Build power among those most directly affected by water challenges and most committed to a sustainable and equitable water future.
  • Invest in field partner, coalition, and community capacity so that our partners can sustainably and effectively drive change.

The Table’s situational priorities are the issue areas where the collaborative focuses its efforts. The following are the broad categories the Water Table foresees as priorities for the next few years. Specific, more granular sub-areas for immediate action will be identified on an annual and/or rolling basis:

  • Ensure clean, safe, affordable water and wastewater infrastructure for underserved communities.
  • Advance nature-based solutions for climate resilience, and ecosystem and public health.
  • Promote municipal “one water” policies for integrated water management.
  • Support rural communities for social, environmental, and economic sustainability in a changing climate.

The collaborative’s priorities are never set in stone; they evolve along with the funders themselves, changing real world conditions and opportunities for impact, and the insights and expertise of our field partners. That said, while the Table’s areas of focus change, Table’s fundamental goals and approach remain true to the model that has driven the collaborative’s success for the past six-plus years. The Water Table’s 2023-2024 priority areas are as follows:

  • Integrated urban water management,
  • Safe clean affordable drinking water,
  • Western water and tribal partnerships,
  • Water Solutions Fund, and
  • Texas Wellspring.