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The National Science Foundation has awarded more than $250,000 to Kelly Alley, the Alma Holladay Professor of Anthropology in the College of Liberal Arts. The funded project, "Investigating the Potential for Decentralized Institutions, Technologies, and Governance to Meet the Wastewater Challenge," is under the direction of Alley and her team. They will study the interactions between institutional structures, governance mechanisms, geophysical landscapes of wastewater flows and cultural practices in the context of decentralized responses to water contamination and shortage. They will focus on projects connected to a sample of 144 drains that pour wastewater into the Ganges river system in India. Their project will also produce case studies in treatment, recycling, water monitoring and environmental regulation that can be shared across communities and countries. Findings from the research will inform policy makers anywhere who plan to undertake decentralized wastewater treatment systems. Findings will also contribute to improved social science theory of the role of infrastructure in social and cultural systems. Funding the research supports two graduate students and enhances international research collaboration. More information about Alley is available online. More information about the project is also available online