Murray–Darling Basin Environmental Water Knowledge and Research (MDB EWKR)

The Murray–Darling Basin Environmental Water Knowledge and Research project are collaborating with water managers to investigate the uncertainties around how best to use environmental water and apply this knowledge to real-life decision making.


Our research aims to improve the understanding of how environmental flow management influences ecosystem function and thereby sustains biodiversity. This understanding will enable complementary water and natural resource management actions to enhance the outcomes of environmental water management for ecological and human communities throughout the Murray–Darling Basin.


Our research is improving the ability of water agencies to assess and understand changes in ecological health over the medium to long-term. We are strengthening their operations and planning by improving capacity to:

  • predict environmental flow outcomes
  • set realistic objectives and targets for water management and complementary natural resource management as the climate changes
  • monitor, evaluate and report progress on Basin Plan environmental objectives and targets.

Our research is contributing to the Murray–Darling Basin Plan’s environmental, adaptive management, and reporting objectives.


Together with water managers, scientists and government, we are improving our understanding of critical ecological processes — like vegetation, fish and waterbird recruitment — which relate to changes in flow. This can be used to inform environmental water management decisions, within the policy framework of the Murray–Darling Basin Plan.

The project is managed by the Centre for Freshwater Ecosystems (formerly Murray–Darling Freshwater Research Centre) and funded by the Australian Government’s Commonwealth Environmental Water Office.

Our collaborators