Professor and Specialist
Office: 845 N. Park Ave, 5th Floor, Suite 535
As of January 4, 2010, Katharine Jacobs is working in Washington DC at the Office of Science and Technology Policy on an Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) mobility assignment and is the Assistant Director of OSTP for Climate Assessment and Adaptation. She is a professor in the University of Arizona Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science at the University of Arizona and is also affiliated with the recently established Institute of the Environment, working on climate adaptation and water management issues. From 2006-2009 Jacobs was the Executive Director of the Arizona Water Institute, a consortium of the three state universities focused on water-related research, education and technology transfer in support of water supply sustainability. She has more than twenty years of experience as a water manager for the state of Arizona Department of Water Resources, including 14 years as director of the Tucson Active Management Area. Her research interests include water policy, connecting science and decision-making, stakeholder engagement, use of climate information for water management applications, climate change adaptation and drought planning. Her largest current project is a collaborative research partnership with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation enhancing use of climate information for managing the Colorado River.
Ms. Jacobs earned her M.L.A. in environmental planning from the University of California, Berkeley. She was the author of the water sector chapter for the National Assessment of the Impacts of Climate Change, and a convening lead author of the Climate Change Science Program’s report on Decision-Support Experiments for Water Resources. She has served on eight National Research Council panels and was Chair of the NRC Panel on Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change and a member of the panel on America’s Climate Choices.
University of California, Berkeley. MLA in Environmental
Professional Project: Coastal Management Plan for Anchorage, Alaska.
Middlebury College, Middlebury, Vermont. B.A. in Biology, 1977.
Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. Junior year exchange student in Biology.
Professor and Specialist, Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science and Water Resources Research Center, University of Arizona, October 2003 – present.
Research is focused on water policy, drought planning, stakeholder engagement, Colorado River management, climate change adaptation, and analysis of knowledge systems for sustainable development. Also serve as a water management extension specialist (multiple outreach and education activities), as an Associate Director of the SAHRA NSF Center, and as an Affiliate of the Institute of Environment at the UA.
Executive Director of the Arizona Water Institute, January, 2006 – present. Responsible for program development, building collaborative partnerships with communities, agencies and tribes, project management, inter-university and inter-agency coordination, grant writing and fundraising, outreach, education, and technology transfer for an innovative institute linking Arizona’s three universities; also facilitate workshops, supervise employees and students, manage research projects and give public lectures and presentations (45 in 2008).
Deputy Director, Center for Sustainability of semi-Arid Hydrology and Riparian Areas, University of Arizona, September 2004 – February 2008. Assisted in management and strategic planning for an NSF Science and Technology Center involving 14 universities and laboratories and over 250 researchers. The federal budget was just under $3 million annually; developed and managed SAHRA’s water management-focused stakeholder engagement program. Associate Director for Science Implementation, March 2008 to 2010. Managed stakeholder engagement activities and facilitate use of science outputs in management applications.
Special Assistant for Policy and Planning, Arizona Department of Water Resources, August, 2002 to October, 2003. In this position, I was the lead staff person for the development of the Arizona Drought Plan and worked on statewide and rural water resource issues.
Visiting Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA-UCAR), September, 2001 to July 2002. I worked closely with scientists and researchers to improve the effectiveness of water and climate related research and applications within NOAA, including developing climate science decision support tools.
Special Assistant, Governor Hull’s Water Management Commission, Arizona Department of Water Resources. March, 2001 to July, 2001. I was the lead staff person supporting a 49-person Commission and multiple working groups established by the Governor.
Director, Tucson Active Management Area, Arizona Department of Water Resources, February, 1988, to March, 2001. My responsibilities included managing the groundwater rights in the greater Tucson area, overseeing and managing all aspects of the Tucson office of the Arizona Department of Water Resources, and developing water management policy and regulations, including mandatory conservation requirements, the Assured Water Supply Rules, recharge and recovery activities, and consensus building relative to major water conflicts.
Unit Supervisor, Water Resource Specialist II and III, Tucson Active Management Area, September, 1981 to February, 1988. I served as lead planner for municipal, turf and industrial water conservation programs for the second management plan, as well as supervising Operations and Compliance for the Tucson office. I developed and implemented mandatory conservation requirements for municipal and industrial water use, verified water rights applications, and prepared reports for hearings.
Coastal Management Planner, Municipality of Anchorage Planning Department. Anchorage, Alaska. 1980. As part of a three-member team, I prepared the Coastal Management Plan for a 25 mile segment of the Anchorage shoreline, including public access, resource protection, and scenic area elements.
Teaching Assistant, University of California, Berkeley. 1979 and 1980. I taught three field courses in site planning and field ecological analysis.
Administrative Assistant, Shoals Marine Laboratory, Cornell University. Organized classes in marine biology at a field station off the coast of Maine.
Award for Excellence as a Teaching Assistant, Berkeley, 1981
American Society of Landscape Architects Honor Award for the
Outstanding Graduate Student in Landscape Architecture, Berkeley, 1981
Newhouse Grant and Heller Fellowship, Berkeley, 1980
Cum laude, Departmental Honors in Biology, Middlebury College, 1977
Elected to Mortar Board, Senior Honor Society, Middlebury College, 1977
Dean's List and College Scholar, Middlebury College, 1973‑1977
Boggess Award, Best Paper, Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 2009
Partners in Conservation Award, Secretary of the Interior, 2009
Appointed to National Academy of Sciences Panels, 1994, 2002, 2003, 2005, and 2008 (2 panels)
Outstanding Diversity by a Graduate Program Award, Univ. of Arizona, 2008
Special Achievement Award, Dept. of Water Resources, 2002
Employee of the Year, Dept. of Water Resources, 2000
Tucson Regional Water Council Community Leadership Award, 1999
Special Achievement Award, Dept. of Water Resources, 1996
Special Achievement Award, Dept. of Water Resources, 1993
Special Achievement Award, Dept. of Water Resources, 1991
Division of the Year, Dept. of Water Resources, 1989
Supervisor of the Year, Dept. of Water Resources, 1988
National Research Council - America’s Climate Choices Panel and Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change Panel (Chair, current)
University Corporation for Atmospheric Research – Trustee (current)
Colorado River Hydrology Advisory Board – US Bureau of Reclamation (current)
Science Steering Group – Water Cycle Inter-Agency Working Group, US Climate Change
Science Program Office (current)
NOAA Climate Services Development Review Panel
Board of Directors, Water Education Foundation (current)
Trustee, Board of the Arizona Chapter of The Nature Conservancy; Chair, Conservation and Public Policy Committee (current)
California Water Plan Climate Change Technical Advisory Group (current)
University of Arizona Campus Sustainability Steering Committee (current)
University of Arizona Unité Mixte Internationale Scientific Committee (current)
Arizona Town Hall (current)
Arizona Hydrologic Society (current)
American Water Works Association (current)
American Water Resources Association (current)
Arizona Water & Pollution Control Association (renamed AZWATER - current)
National Research Council Panel, Analysis of Global Change Assessments (Co-chair, 2006-2007)
Steering Committee, Understanding the Consequences of Thresholds in Global Change: Documentation and Implications for Decision-Making, Heinz Center (2006- 2007)
Chair, University of Arizona, Water Sustainability Education and Outreach Committee, (2003- 2006)
Chair, National Research Council Panel Reviewing the GAPP Water Cycle Research Program (2005)
National Research Council - Committee to Review the US Climate Change Strategic Plan(2002 and 2004)
National Research Council - Committee on Endangered Species in the Platte River (2003-2004)
U.S. National Assessment: The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change, National Assessment Synthesis Team (1998-2001)
Southern AZ Water Resources Association and Tucson Regional Water Council Board of Directors (1988-2001)
National Research Council – Committee on Valuing Ground Water (1995-1997)
Citizens CAP Oversight Committee – City of Tucson (1994-1995)
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, in press, “Linking Knowledge with Action in the Pursuit of Sustainable Water Resources Management” with Louis Lebel (Chang Mai University); James Buizer (Arizona State University); Lee Addams (Columbia University); Pam Matson (Stanford University); Ellen McCullough (FAO); Po Garden (Chang Mai University); George Saliba (University of Arizona); Timothy Finan (University of Arizona).
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, in press, “Making short-term climate forecasts useful: Linking science and action” with James Buizer (Arizona State University) and David Cash (State of Massachusetts).
J. Banner, C. Jackson, L. Yang, K. Hayhoe, C. Woodhouse, L. Gulden, K. Jacobs, G. North, R. Leung and W. Washington, (submitted), “Climate Change Impacts on Texas Water: A White Paper Assessment of the Past, Present and Future and Recommendations for Action.” Texas Water Journal.
K. Jacobs, (in press), “Sustainability and River Restoration in the Colorado River Basin: A Climate Perspective,” in Melis, T.S., Hamill, J.F., Coggins, L.C., Jr., Grams, P.E., Kennedy, T.A., Kubly, D.M., and Ralston, B.E., eds., Proceedings of the Colorado River Basin Science and resource Management Symposium, November 18-20, 2009, USGS, Reston, VA
G. Garfin, K. Jacobs and J. Buizer, (in press). “Climate Change Adaptation Lessons from the Land of Dry Heat.” Webb, R.M.T., and Semmens, D.J., eds., 2009, Planning for an uncertain future—Monitoring, integration, and adaptation. Proceedings of the Third Interagency Conference on Research in the Watersheds: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2009-5049, 292 p.
Jacobs, K., 2009, “Water Rights for the Environment?” Vermillion Flycatcher, Vol. 54, No. 3.
Bark, R and K. Jacobs, 2009. "Indian Water Rights Settlements and Water Management Innovations: The Role of the Arizona Water Settlements Act,” Water Resources Research.
Jacobs, K., 2009, “Groundwater Management Issues and Innovations in Arizona” in Policy and Strategic Behaviour in Water Resource Management, A. Dinar and J. Albiac, eds., Earthscan, London.
U.S. Climate Change Science Program, 2008. Decision-Support Experiments and Evaluations using Seasonal-to-Interannual Forecasts and Observational Data: A Focus on Water Resources. A Report by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee onGlobal Change Research (Nancy Beller-Simms, Helen Ingram, David Feldman, Nathan Mantua, Katharine L. Jacobs, and Anne Waple (eds.)). NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center, Asheville, NC, 192 pp.
Saliba, G. and Jacobs, K., 2008. Saving the San Pedro River: Science, Collaboration and Water Sustainability in Arizona. Environment.
Jacobs, K., 2008. “Preparing for Climate Change: Options for Water Managers.” Arizona Water & Pollution Control Association Newsletter. Vol. 25, No. 3.
Garfin, G., K. Jacobs, J. Buizer, 2008. “Beyond Brainstorming: Exploring Climate Change Adaptation Strategies.” EOS, (June 18).
Goddard, L., A. Wood, N. Mantua, K. Jacobs, 2008. “Decadal Climate Prediction: Learning from the Oceans.” California Drought: An Update. California Department of Water Resources.
Gries, C., K. Jacobs, W.D. Otte, R. Vasquez, J. Abraham, R. Aguilar, J. McGill, S. Bhargav, H. Nguyen, 2008. “The Arizona Hydrologic Information System.” AWRA Spring Specialty Conference, March, 2008, San Mateo, CA.
Garrick, D., K. L. Jacobs and G.M. Garfin (2008), Decision Making under Uncertainty: Shortage, Stakeholders and Modeling in the Colorado River Basin, Journal of the American Water Resources Association.
National Research Council, (2007), Analysis of Global Change Assessments: Lessons Learned, Committee Report (Co-chair), National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.
Colby, B., and K.L. Jacobs, eds, (2006), Arizona Water Policy: Management Innovations in an Urbanizing, Arid Region, Resources for the Future Press, Washington, DC.
Holway, J.M., and K.L. Jacobs (2006), Managing for Sustainability in Arizona, USA: Linking Climate, Water Management and Growth, in Water Resources Sustainability, L. Mays, ed., McGraw-Hill.
Garrick, D. and K. L. Jacobs, (2006), Water Management on the Colorado River: From Surplus to Shortage in Five Years, Southwest Hydrology, Vol. 5, No. 3, p 8-9.
Wilhite, D.A., D.M. Diodaso, K. Jacobs, R. Palmer, K. Redmond, D. Sada, K. Helm Smith, J. Warwick, O. Wilhelmi, (2006), Managing Drought: A Roadmap for Change in the United States. Conference Report, The Geological Society of America.
National Research Council, (2005), Review of the GEWEX Americas Prediction Project Science Implementation Plan, Committee Report (Chair). National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.
Jacobs, K., B.Colby, D. Meko, and B. Nijjsen, 2005, Enhanced Water Supply Reliability Through Improved Predictive Capacity and Response, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, December 7, 2005. San Francisco.
Jacobs, K.L., G.M. Garfin and M. Lenart, (2005) More than Just Talk: Connecting Science and Decisionmaking, Environment, Volume. 47, No. 9, p 6-22.
Jacobs, K.L., G. M. Garfin and B. J. Morehouse, (2005), Climate Science and Drought Planning: The Arizona Experience, Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Volume 41, No.2, p 437-445.
Pulwarty, R.S, K.L. Jacobs and R.M. Dole, (2005), The Hardest Working River: Drought and Critical Water Problems in the Colorado River Basin in Don Wilhite, ed., Drought and Water Crises: Science, Technology, and Management Issues, Marcel Dekker.
Jacobs, K.L. and B. Morehouse, (2005), Why Sustainability is Not a Four-Letter Word, Southwest Hydrology, Volume 4, No. 1, p 14-15, 26.
Leake, S.A., C. Filippone, K.L. Jacobs and B.J. Morehouse, (2004), Sustainability and the Time Scale of Human Alterations to Water Resources, Proceedings of the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, November, 2004, Denver, Colorado.
Jacobs, K.L. and G.M. Garfin, (2004), Arizona’s Drought Planning: Focusing on Adaptation Water Resources Impact, AWRA, Vol 6, No. 4, p 14-17.
Jacobs, K.L. and J.M. Holway, (2004), Managing for Sustainability in an Arid Climate: Lessons Learned From 20 Years of Groundwater Management in Arizona, Hydrogeology Journal, Vol 12, No. 1, pp.52-65.
Jacobs, K.L., B.G. Colby, D.A. de Kok, G. Woodard, R.P. Maguire, S.B. Megdal and M.A. Worden, (2004), Arizona’s Water Future: Challenges and Opportunities, Background Report for the 85th Arizona Town Hall, 234 pp. (Authored or co-authored eight chapters).
Stitzer, L.S., K.L. Jacobs and ADWR Staff, (2004), Rural Water Resources Study, Arizona Department of Water Resources, 28 pp.
National Research Council, (2004), Endangered and Threatened Species of the Platte River (Committee Report), National Academy Press, Washington, DC.
National Research Council, (2004), Implementing Climate and Global C
hange Research: A Review of the Final U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan (Committee Report), National Academy Press, Washington, DC.
Jacobs, K. and R. Pulwarty, (2003), Water Resource Management: Science, Planning and Decision-Making In: Water: Science, Policy, and Management, Lawford, R., D. Fort, H. Hartmann, and S. Eden (Eds.), American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC.
Jacobs, K. L., S. Luoma and K. Taylor, (2003), CALFED: An Experiment in Science and Decision-making, Environment, Jan/Feb, pp 30-41.
Jacobs, K. L. and B. J. Morehouse, (2003), Improved Drought Planning for Arizona. Proceedings of the University of Colorado Natural Resources Law Center conference on Water, Climate and Uncertainty: Implications for Western Water Law, Policy and Management. June 11-13.
National Research Council, (2003), Planning Climate and Global Change Research: A Review of the Draft U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan (Committee Report), National Academy Press, Washington, DC.
Jacobs, K.L., (2002), Connecting Science, Policy and Decision-Making: A Handbook for Researchers and Science Agencies, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of Global Programs, Silver Spring, Maryland.
Jacobs, K.L. and Staff (2002), Arizona Department of Water Resources, Transition Report for Governor Napolitano: November 1, 2002.
U.S. Global Change Research Program, (2000), U.S. National Assessment of the Impact of Climate Variability and Change, Water Sector Chapter, National Synthesis Team Report to Congress, Cambridge University Press.
Jacobs, K.L., (1999), Post Decision Assessment – Decision-Maker Response in Tools to Aid Environmental Decision Making, V. Dale and M. English, eds. University of Tennessee, National Center for Decision Making Research.
Jacobs, K.L., L.G. Wilson and G. Matlock, (1998), Hydrologic Uncertainties and Policy Implications: The Water Consumer Protection Act of Tucson, Arizona, USA, Hydrogeology Journal, Volume 6, Number 1, June.
National Research Council, (1997), Valuing Ground Water: Economic Concepts and Approaches, Water, Science and Technology Board, National Academy Press, Washington, DC.
Jacobs, K.L. and S. Eden, (1997), Regional Recharge Planning in the Tucson Active Management Area, Proceedings of the 8th Biennial Symposium on the Artificial Recharge of Groundwater.
Jacobs, K.L., (1996), Regional Recharge Committee Technical Report, Arizona Department of Water Resources, Tucson Active Management Area.
Jacobs, K.L., H. Kopp, and Staff (1994), Final Draft – Assured and Adequate Water Supply Rules. Arizona Department of Water Resources, January.
Jacobs, K.L., (1992), Assured Water Supply Program: Consistency with the Management Goal. Arizona Department of Water Resources, February.
Jacobs, K.L., and T.C. Richmond, (1991), Evaluation of Potential Agricultural Requirements for Future Management Periods, Arizona Department of Water Resources, October.
Jacobs, K.L., (1991), How to Handle Your Friendly Local Regulator, Proceedings of the International Golf Course Superintendents Conference, February.
Woodard, G. and K.L. Jacobs, K.L. (1990), Salvaging Arizona's Groundwater Code, Arizona Review, Spring.
Jacobs, K.L., (1990), Water Conservation Planning in Arizona: A Guide to the Second Management Plan. Proceedings of Conserv 90, August.
Jacobs, K.L., and P. Dos Santos, (1990), Santa Cruz County Water Issues Report, Arizona Department of Water Resources, April.
Jacobs, K.L., (1988), Arizona's Second Management Plan: A Strategy for the 1990's, Proceedings of the Arizona‑Nevada Academy of Science.
Jacobs, K.L., and T. Carr, (1988), Groundwater Management in Arizona: An Evolving Perspective, Proceedings of the Western States Water Council Symposium.
Jacobs, K.L., (1987), Water Management: One State's Answer, Golf Course Management, February.
Jacobs, K.L., (1986), Review of The Florida Water Atlas, Economic Geography.
Jacobs, K.L., (1985), Turf and Landscape Regulations for the Tucson and Phoenix
Active Management Areas, Proceedings of the Arizona Turf, Landscape and Irrigation Conference, May.z
Jacobs, K.L., (1980), Celia Thaxter and Her Island Garden. Landscape, Volume 24, Number 3, September.
Jacobs, K.L., E. A. Hill, and L. L. Snyder, (1980), Coastal Scenic Resources and Public Access Plan, Municipality of Anchorage Planning Department, Alaska.