Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

John Briscoe

Visiting Fellow (in memoriam)


water; natural resources; infrastructure; economic development


John Briscoe (1948-2014) was a Professor of Environment Engineering Harvard University where he directed the Harvard Water Security Initiative. He lived in his native South Africa, the United States, Bangladesh, Mozambique, India and Brazil. In his 20-year career at the World Bank, he held high-level technical positions (as the Bank’s Senior Water Advisor) and managerial positions (Country Director for Brazil). He also worked as an engineer in the government water agencies of South Africa and Mozambique, as an epidemiologist at the Cholera Research Center in Bangladesh. Briscoe served on the CGD Advisory Group. Books include the World Bank’s Water Sector StrategyIndia's Water Economy: Bracing for a Turbulent  FuturePakistan’s Water Economy: Running Dry ,The Australian Water Project: Crisis and Opportunity, and A Productive and Water-Secure Pakistan.



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