National Centers for Innovation in Small Drinking Water Systems

From 2014-2018, research groups at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the University of Colorado Boulder led a national effort to develop cutting-edge water treatment technologies and facilitate widespread acceptance by small drinking water systems. These National Centers for Innovation in Small Drinking Water Systems and their network of more than 30 partners in the United States and Canada helped to strengthen the technical, managerial, and financial capabilities of small community drinking water providers throughout the country.

Massachusetts’ Water Innovation Network for Sustainable Small Systems (WINSSS) and Colorado’s Design of Risk-reducing, Innovative-implementable, Small-system Knowledge (DeRISK) centers were supported by more than $8 million in grant money from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Though this specific effort has ended, we continued to share research conducted by these teams, at universities, and by private companies throughout the country in a monthly newsletter: Innovations for Small Systems.

About the Centers

The WINSSS Center brings together a national team of experts to transform drinking water treatment for small water systems to meet the urgent need for state-of-the-art innovation, development, demonstration, and implementation of treatment, information, and process technologies.

The team is one of many WINSSS Center partners and the lead developers of a state survey designed to improve understanding of treatment technology adoption. The results will serve as the foundation for WINSSS and DeRISK center efforts to document additional data needs, help interested states overcome barriers to adoption, and develop approaches to facilitate further acceptance.

DeRISK Center
DeRISK Center researchers and programmatic staff are working to create decision analysis tools for assessing and implementing innovative technologies that could be used for a range of treatment goals and, with stakeholder buy-in, are acceptable in multiple states. These tools will help reduce risks associated with key contaminant groups and increase the change of adoption and sustainable use in small systems.