The Institute's primary objective is to maintain a balanced program of research that addresses water problems critical to New Mexico, the Southwest, and the nation. The Institute's major program guidance comes from its Program Development and Review Board, composed of representatives of the USGS, state government, each of the major doctoral granting state universities, and the Institute.
The program uses two approaches:
Support of small "seed money" projects that allow State University faculties to explore and develop research ideas that can attract more substantial outside funding. This is done with the Federal base grant (Section 104B of the Water Resources Research Act - [Public Law 98-242 as amended]) and part of the funds provided by the State of New Mexico.
Providing non-federal matching funds required for other programs: i.e., Section 104G. Depending upon the availability of funding, annual request for proposals for "seed money" projects are usually announced in the spring. The Section 104G program is usually announced in January - February of each year (NEW FY2011_104G_RFP_Abstract.pdf). These grants are available to any tenure track faculty member in any Department at any of the state's 6 universities (UNM, NMTech, NMSU, NMHU, NMWU, & NMEU). Interested PIs should discuss their ideas with NMWRRI.
NM WRRI initiated a student research grant program in FY 2003. This initial grant program was made possible by an increase in state appropriations and resulted in the award of 12 grants to students in the state's universities. These grants were limited to $5,000 and 1 year. These student research grants are available to any full-time graduate or undergraduate student in any degree program at any of the state's 6 universities.