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Ellen Hanak
Ellen Hanak
Vice President and Director of the Water Policy Center and Senior Fellow

Ellen Hanak Chair in Water Policy


Water policy, climate change policy, infrastructure finance

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Ellen Hanak is vice president and director of the PPIC Water Policy Center and a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, where she holds the Ellen Hanak Chair in Water Policy. Under her leadership, the center has become a critical source of information and guidance for natural resource management in California. She has authored dozens of reports, articles, and books on water policy, including Managing California’s Water. Her research is frequently profiled in the national media, and she participates in briefings, conferences, and interviews throughout the nation and around the world. Her other areas of expertise include climate change and infrastructure finance. Previously, she served as research director at PPIC. Before joining PPIC, she held positions with the French agricultural research system, the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, and the World Bank. She holds a PhD in economics from the University of Maryland.

curriculum vitae

Paying for California’s Water System
Water Affordability
Access to Safe Drinking Water
California’s Future
California’s Future: Water and a Changing Climate
Priorities for California’s Water
Water Partnerships between Cities and Farms in Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley
California’s Water Grid
Groundwater Recharge
California’s Water Market
Water Use in California
Water and the Future of the San Joaquin Valley
California’s Water
California’s Water: Climate Change and Water
California’s Water: The Colorado River
California’s Water: Energy and Water
California’s Water: Managing Droughts
California’s Water: Paying for Water
California’s Water: Preparing for Floods
California’s Water: Protecting Headwaters
California’s Water: Providing Safe Drinking Water
California’s Water: The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
California’s Water: Storing Water
California’s Water: Water for Cities
California’s Water: Water for the Environment
California’s Water: Water for Farms
Managing Drought in a Changing Climate: Four Essential Reforms
Replenishing Groundwater in the San Joaquin Valley
A New Approach to Accounting for Environmental Water: Insights from the Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta
Building Drought Resilience in California’s Cities and Suburbs
Groundwater in California
Water Stress and a Changing San Joaquin Valley
Accounting for California’s Water
Improving the Federal Response to Western Drought: Five Areas for Reform
Allocating California’s Water: Directions for Reform
California’s Water Quality Challenges
What If California’s Drought Continues?
Policy Priorities for Managing Drought
Paying for Water in California
Stress Relief: Prescriptions for a Healthier Delta Ecosystem
Costs of Ecosystem Management Actions for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
Scientist and Stakeholder Views on the Delta Ecosystem
Integrated Management of Delta Stressors: Institutional and Legal Options
California’s Water Market, By the Numbers, Update 2012
Aquatic Ecosystem Stressors in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
Where the Wild Things Aren’t: Making the Delta a Better Place for Native Species
Water and the California Economy
Transitions for the Delta Economy
Managing California’s Water: From Conflict to Reconciliation
Driving Change: Reducing Vehicle Miles Traveled in California
Views from the Street: Linking Transportation and Land Use
California Water Myths
Paying for Infrastructure: California’s Choices
California Coastal Management with a Changing Climate
Preparing California for a Changing Climate
Climate Policy at the Local Level: A Survey of California’s Cities and Counties
Adapting California’s Water Management to Climate Change
Financing Infrastructure
Transportation Systems
Comparing Futures for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
Envisioning Futures for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
Is Water Policy Limiting Residential Growth? Evidence from California
Lawns and Water Demand in California
Water for Growth: California’s New Frontier
California 2025: Taking on the Future
California 2025: It’s Your Choice
Sizing Up the Challenge: California’s Infrastructure Needs and Tradeoffs
Linking Housing Growth to Water Supply: The American West’s New Frontier
Water Supply and Growth in California: A Survey of City and County Land-Use Planners
Who Should Be Allowed to Sell Water in California? Third-Party Issues and the Water Market
California’s Water Market, By the Numbers
Anticipating and Addressing the Impacts of the Drought
Commentary: Water Markets Can Reduce the Costs of Drought
Turning the Page on a Disruptive Year in the Water World
Setting Aside Environmental Water for the San Joaquin River
Commentary: 3 Lessons for California’s Water Funding Challenges in Today’s Recession
Commentary: How to Address Groundwater Planning Gaps
Will Groundwater Sustainability Plans End the Problem of Dry Drinking Water Wells?
Sinking Lands, Damaged Infrastructure: Will Better Groundwater Management End Subsidence?
Water Availability for San Joaquin Valley Farms: A Balancing Act
What’s the Plan to End Groundwater Overdraft in the San Joaquin Valley?
A Reality Check on Groundwater Overdraft in the San Joaquin Valley
Commentary: Newsom’s Water Framework Is Imperfect but Necessary. The Alternative Is Further Deterioration of the Delta
Governor’s Budget Seeks to Build Water Resilience
A Changing Water Landscape
Managing Urban Water During Dry Times: The California Example
Water Policy Priorities for a Changing California
Got Surface Water? Groundwater-Only Lands in the San Joaquin Valley
Testimony: Water Supply and Quality Challenges in the San Joaquin Valley
Testimony: Upgrading California’s Water Grid to Meet 21st Century Needs
A Winning Approach for Managing Groundwater in the San Joaquin Valley
Commentary: A Balancing Act for the Water-Stressed San Joaquin Valley
Commentary: Delta Interests Should Seize the Opportunity to Cease Water Fights
A Momentous Water Year
Commentary: Peace in California’s Water Wars is Within Grasp
Adapting to an Uncertain Water Future
Commentary: A Chance to Solve the Delta Quandary
Groundwater Management is Key to Adapting to Climate Change
Make California’s Water Grid Climate-Ready
Voters Favor New Water Bond. What Are They Missing?
Four Ways to Foster Cooperation over Groundwater
Three Water Challenges for Almonds
The Yuba Accord: A Model for Water Management
Are California’s Cities Ready for the Next Drought?
Commentary: Replenishing Groundwater in the San Joaquin Valley
Jay Lund Elected to National Academy of Engineering
Information Gaps Hinder Progress on Safe Drinking Water
A Look Back at the Year in Water Policy
Commentary: California Should Plan as if Drought Has Returned
How California’s Water Bond Is Being Spent
The State of Groundwater Recharge in the San Joaquin Valley
Fellow to Explore Central Valley Groundwater Problems
In Memoriam: Dave Cogdill
Commentary: Strategy for California’s Next Drought
Commentary: What Did We Learn from the Drought?
Commentary: Cooperation Needed on San Joaquin Valley Water
Commentary: A Grand Compromise for the Delta
New Laws Strengthen State’s Water Safety Net
Water Marketing That Helps Nature
Commentary: California Needs Better Account of Groundwater
Brian Gray Joins PPIC Water Team
How Is California Spending the Water Bond?
A California Drought Report Card
Making Federal Farm Support Drought-Smart
Safeguarding Groundwater for a Drier Future
Video: Water and Growth in the West
Video: Reforming Federal Drought Management
State Water Market Needs Reform
Flint, a Water Quality Reminder for California
A Strong Start for PPIC’s Water Policy Center
A Pragmatic Reason to Protect Freshwater Fish
Testimony: Planning for Future Droughts
Testimony: Paying for California’s Water Needs
Proposed Reservoirs Are No Panacea for Drought
The High Cost of Drought for Low-Income Californians
Why Farming Needs the New Groundwater Law
Drought: 10 Ways the Federal Government Can Help
“The Central Valley Needs a New Narrative”
Testimony: Improvements Needed in Water Information
New Strategy, New Challenges for the Delta
Experts Weigh In on Drought Solutions
Managing Tough Trade-offs in the Delta
Californians Can Save Water—and Preserve Quality of Life
Nine Policy Challenges for California Water
Five Things You Need to Know About Water
Welcome to the PPIC Water Policy Center
Drought Watch: The End of the Rainy Season
Drought Watch: Priorities for Cities and Farms
Drought Watch: Treating Stormwater as a Resource
Commentary: Set Water Priorities to Prepare for Drought
Testimony: Addressing California’s Growing Flood Risk
Drought Watch: Managing—and Learning from—Scarcity
Drought Watch: What If 2015 Is Dry?
Drought Watch: What’s in Proposition 1?
Drought Watch: California as a Testing Ground
Drought Watch: Video Seminars
Drought Watch: Crises as Catalyst for Policy Change
Drought Watch: Rethinking Urban Water Pricing
Drought Watch: Our Thirsty Lawns
Drought Watch: Putting Some Myths to Rest
Allow Water Rights Trading
Drought Watch: Regional Solutions
Local Water Funding in the June Primaries
Drought Watch: Lessons from Kansas
Drought Watch: Groundwater, Our Hidden Asset
Drought Watch: Improving Environmental Management
Drought Watch: Keeping Better Track of Water
Drought Watch: Essential Elements for a Water Bond
Drought Watch: Funding Sustainable Groundwater Management
Testimony: Funding to Promote Drought Resilience
Drought Watch: Roadblocks to Efficient Funding
Drought Watch: Harnessing the Storms
Drought Watch: A Conversation with Business Leaders
Testimony: Using Cap & Trade Revenues to Bolster Climate Policy
Drought Watch: A Better Way to Manage Water for Fish
Drought Watch: Lessons from the Past
Beyond the Drought: 10 Big Changes Ahead for California Water
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