Water resource policy issues are receiving increasing attention. <ref> name= Halcrow http://www.futurewecreate.com/includes/0614Global%20Water%20Security%20PSC%2019%20Oct%20rev1.pdf</ref>It is widely believed that water policy is entering a period of more or less permanent crisis,<ref>http://www.gwp.org/Global/The%20Challenge/Resource%20material/IWRM%20at%20a%20glance.pdf</ref> at least in some regions, and the chilling spectre of worldwide crisis at some point in the future.<ref>http://www.voanews.com/english/news/usa/arts/Fight-for-Water-Hits-Crisis-Levels-Worldwide-118423974.html</ref>Given the complexity of international law, national sovereignty and forecasted water shortages, attention is increasingly focused on various approaches to this complex subject matter.<ref>http://www.cabdirect.org/abstracts/20023193561.html</ref> Organizations such as the Global Water Policy Project have sprung up to promote awareness and prod government and NGO's into heightened awareness of the problems.<ref>http://www.globalwaterpolicy.org</ref>
Various jurisdictions at all levels from international down to small water districts regulate water resources to protect drinkability and agricultural uses from water pollution. Advanced industrial countries typically develope stringent rules which are disseminated worldwide through aid agencies and international agencies such as various departments of the United Nations. Within the developed nations, some localities have more highly developed water regulatory policy analysis, making and implementation bodies in place, due either to general social and ideological concerns or familiarity with specific, often problematic water quality problems.
===Water resource management in higher education==
Oregon State University offers a degree program in Water Resources Policy and Management (WRPM) <ref>http://oregonstate.edu/gradwater/degreeprograms/wrpm.php</ref>