Wendy Jepson

Wendy Jepson


University Professor


  (979) 458-2224

  CSA 201B


Dr. Wendy Jepson, recently named a University Professor, leads several international water security research projects, funded by an array of agencies that include the US National Science Foundation and the Texas A&M Presidential Excellence Fund, to examine water governance, water security, and environmental justice for the benefit of advancing community and human wellbeing. Her individual research focuses on Latin America, principally Brazil and Mexico, with emerging research interests in Africa, including Ethiopia and West Africa.

As part of her research agenda, Dr. Jepson leads several large international projects that collaborations with institutions and organizations that include the Federal University of Ceará (Brazil), where she was a Fulbright Scholar and current Visiting Professor.

Students interested in pursuing graduate work on water governance and water security under my supervision can send me a CV, brief statement on research interests, and GRE scores (if available).

Selected Publications


* graduate student, c corresponding author, + post-doctoral scholar

Stoler, J., Wendy Jepson, Amber Wutich. (2020) “Beyond Handwashing: Water Insecurity Undermines COVID-19 Response in Developing Areas” Journal of Global Health [Viewpoint] http://www.jogh.org/documents/issue202001/jogh-10-010355.htm

Tomaz, P*, W. Jepsonc, J. Santos (2020) “Urban household water insecurities from the margins: Perspectives from Northeast Brazil” The Professional Geographer doi: https://doi.org/10.1080/00330124.2020.1750439

Wutich, A. Rosinger, A. Brewis, W. Jepson. J. Stoler (2019) Measuring Water for Human Biology. American Journal of Human Biology doi: https://doi.org/10.1002/ajhb.23350

Young, Sera, Godfred Boeteng, Torsten Neilands, Josh Miller, Shalean Collins, Alexandra Brewis, Ed Frongillo, Hugo Melgar-Quinoes, Roseanne Schuster, Amber Wutich, Wendy Jepson, and Justin Stoler, and HWISE Consortium (2019) “Development and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Household Water Insecurity Across Cultures: The Household Water Insecurity Experiences (HWISE) Scale”. BMJ Global Health 2019;4:e001750. doi: https://gh.bmj.com/content/4/5/e001750

Brewis, Alexandra, Cassandra Workman, Amber Wutich, Wendy Jepson, Sera Young, and the HWISE-RCN (2019) “Household Water Insecurity Is a Plausible Driver of Food Insecurity: Evidence from 27 Sites in Low- and Middle-Income Countries” American Journal of Human Biology doi:https://doi.org/10.1002/ajhb.23309

Beckner, Sydney*, Wendy Jepson, Christian Brannstrom, and John Tracy (2019) “‘What You Have Is a Very Poor Region and a Very Rich Buyer’: Social Perspectives on Urban Water Security and Groundwater Transfers in Central Texas” Society & Natural Resources, 32:11, 1222-1238, https://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2019.1648709

Jepson, W., Amber Wutich, and Leila Harris. (2019) “Water-Security Capabilities and the Human Right to Water.” In Farhana Sultana and Alex Loftus (Eds.), Water Politics: Governance, Justice and the Right to Water. Routledge Earthscan, New York and London, pages 84-98.

Young, Sera, Godfred Boeteng, Torsten Neilands, Josh Miller, Shalean Collins, Alexandra Brewis, Ed Frongillo, Wendy Jepson, Hugo Melgar-Quinoes, Roseanne Schuster, Justin Stoler, Amber Wutich (2019). “A Protocol for the Development and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Household Water Insecurity Across Cultures: The Household Water InSecurity Experiences (HWISE) scale” British Medical Journal Open 9 (1) bmjopen-2018-023558; https://10.1136/bmjopen-2018-023558

Wutich, A., J. Budds, W. Jepson, L. Harris, E. Adams, A. Brewis, L. Cronk, C. DeMyers, K. Maes, T. Marley, J. Miller, A. Pearson, A. Rosinger, R. Schuster, J. Stoler, C. Staddon, P. Wiessner, C. Workman, S.L. Young. (2018) “Household Water Sharing: A Review of Water Gifts, Exchanges, and Transfers across Cultures.” Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews – Water  https://10.1002/wat2.1309

Audrey Joslin* and Wendy Jepson (2018) “Constructing Territory and Authority through Market-based Conservation in Ecuador’s Andes” Geoforum 91:10-20 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2018.02.016

Bruno, Tianna* and Wendy Jepson. (2018) “Marketization of Environmental Justice: US EPA Environmental Justice Showcase Community Project in Port Arthur, Texas” Local Environment 23 (3) 276-292 https://doi.org/10.1080/13549839.2017.1415873

Wutich, A. Jessica Budds, Emma Norman, Wendy Jepson, Kathleen O’Reilly, Sameer H. Shah, Leila Harris, Jamie Shinn, and Sera Young (2017) “Advancing Methods for Research on Household Water Insecurity: Studying Entitlements and Capabilities, Socio-cultural dynamics, and Political Processes, Institutions and Governance” Water Security 1(2) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasec.2017.09.001

Jepson, Wendy, Jessica Budds, Emma Norman, Amber Wutich, Kathleen O’Reilly, Sameer H. Shah, Leila Harris, Jamie Shinn, and Sera Young (2017) “Advancing Water Security for Human Development: A Relational Perspective” Water Security 1(1) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasec.2017.07.001

Jepson, Wendy, Amber Wutich, Godfred Boeteng, Shalean Collins, and Sera Young. (2017) “Progress in Household Water Insecurity Metrics: A Cross-Disciplinary Perspective in the Social Sciences” WIREs Water 4(3) https://doi.org/10.1002/wat2.1214

Jepson, Wendy and Emily Vandewalle* (2016) "Household Water Insecurity in the Global North: A Study of Rural and Peri-urban Settlements on the Texas-Mexico Border" The Professional Geographer 68 (1) 66-81 https://doi.org/10.1080/00330124.2015.1028324

Christian Brannstrom, Mary Tilton*, Andrew Klein, Wendy Jepson (2015) “Spatial Distribution of Estimated Wind-Power Royalties in West Texas,” LAND 4(4), 1182-1199 https://doi.org/10.3390/land4041182

Vandewalle, Emily* and Wendy Jepson (2015) “Mediating Water Governance: Point-of-use Water Filtration Devices for Low-income Communities on the US-Mexico border" GEO: Geography and Environment 2(9) 107-121 https://doi.org/10.1002/geo2.9

Jepson, Wendy and Christian Brannstrom. (2015) “Techno-nature the Scalar Politics of Water Governance in South Texas” in E. Norman, C. Cook, and A. Cohen (eds) Negotiating Scale in Water Governance (London: Ashgate Publications), 152-177.

Jepson, Wendy and Heather Lee Brown* (2014) “‘If No Gasoline, No Water’: Privatizing Drinking Water Quality in South Texas Colonias.” Environment and Planning A 46 (5): 1032-1048. https://doi.org/10.1068%2Fa46170

Jepson, Wendy. (2014) “Measuring ‘No-Win’ Waterscapes: Experience-based Scales and Classification Approaches to Assess Household Water Security in Colonias on the US-Mexico Border” Geoforum 51: 107-120 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2013.10.002

Jepson, Wendy, Christian Brannstrom, and Nicole Persons* (2012) “ ‘We Don’t Take the Pledge’: Environmentality and Environmental Skepticism in the Epicenter of US Wind Energy Development” Geoforum (43): 851-863 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2012.02.002

Jepson, Wendy. (2012) “Claiming Space, Claiming Water: Contested Legal Geographies of Water Conflict in South Texas” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 102(3): 614-631 https://doi.org/10.1080/00045608.2011.641897

Brannstrom, Christian, Wendy Jepson, and Nicole Persons*. (2011) “Social Perspectives of Wind-Energy Development in West Texas” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 101(4): 839-85 https://doi.org/10.1080/00045608.2011.568871

Jepson, Wendy, Christian Brannstrom, and Anthony Filippi. (2010) “Access Regimes and Regional Land Change in the Brazilian Cerrado, 1972-2002” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 100 (1): 87-111 https://doi.org/10.1080/00045600903378960


HWISE Consortium Authorship

Consortium authorship represents the role of co-authors in the research design of original study, data collection as site PI, and contributor to the overall manuscript.  Consortium authorship conveys same responsibility for content as named authorship.

Stoler, J., A. Pearson, C. Staddon, A. Wutich, E. Mack, A. Brewis, A. Rosinger and HWISE Consortium. (2020) Cash water expenditures are associated with household water insecurity, food insecurity, and perceived stress in study sites across 20 low-and middle-income countries Science of the Total Environment (Jepson HWISE Consortium Author) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.135881

Schuster R., Butler M., Wutich A., Miller J., Young S., and HWISE Consortium. (2020). “If there is no water, we cannot feed our children”: The far-reaching consequences of water insecurity on infant feeding practices and infant health across 16 low- and middle-income countries. American Journal of Human Biology doi: https://doi.org/10.1002/ajhb.23357  (Jepson HWISE Consortium Author)

Alexandra Brewis, Asher Rosinger, Amber Wutich, Ellis Adams, Lee Cronk, Amber Pearson, Cassandra Workman, Sera Young, and the HWISE Consortium* (2019) Water Sharing, reciprocity, and need: A comparative study of inter-household water transfers in Sub-Saharan Africa. Accepted for publication in Economic Anthropology doi: https://10.1002/sea2.12143 (Jepson HWISE Consortium Author)


Ph.D., Geography, University of California, Los Angeles, 2003

M.A., Geography, Syracuse University, 1997

B.A., History and Geography (Honors), University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1994


Student Government Open Access Award, Texas A&M University (2019)

Dean’s Distinguished Achievement in Research, College of Geosciences, Texas A&M University (2018)

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Leshner Fellow for Public Engagement, 2018-2019

Marisco Visiting Scholar, University of Denver, Denver, CO (2017)

Faculty Recognition, U.S. Veteran Resource and Support Network (2016)

Enhancing Diversity Award, Association of American Geographers (2015)

Richard Stadelmen Faculty Senate Service Award, Texas A&M University Faculty Senate, 2013

Montague Center for Teaching Excellence Scholar, College of Geosciences, Texas A&M University, 2006-2007, including a $5,000 grant for undergraduate education, 2006

Additional Information


  • “Pathways to Sustainable Urban Water Security Transitions,” TAMU Presidential Excellence Fund, X-Grant Program (Principal Investigator Jepson with Co-PIs, Christian Brannstrom, Gabriel Eckstein, Mark Holtzapple, Robert Greer, Kent Portney, John Tracy, Sierra Woodruff) (2018-2021, $1,500,000). https://urbanwaterpathways.org/
  • "Research Collaboration Network: Building a Community of Practice for Household Water Insecurity (HWISE) Research,” National Science Foundation, Geography and Spatial Sciences, PI Jepson with Co-PIs Justin Stoler (University of Miami), Amber Wutich (Arizona State University), and Sera Young (Northwestern University) (2018-2023, $499,036) https://hwise-rcn.org/
  • “Non-material Dimensions of Water Insecurity” Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC, Canada), (PI, Leila Harris, University of British Columbia; Senior Collaborator, Jepson) ($299,000) (2018)
  • Texas A&M University-CONACyT Collaborative Grant, “Health Outcomes of Water Insecurity in Urban Mexico,” $25,000 (as Co-PI, with PI Dr. Genny Carrillo, School of Public Health, and Dr. Felipe Uribe, COLEF), (9/2/2017-9/1/2018)
  • U.S. Fulbright Scholar, 2016-2017, Brazil
  • National Science Foundation, “Urban Water Provisioning Systems and Household Water Security” (Geography and Spatial Science 2016-2019, $254,000)
  • National Science Foundation, "Household water security in low income, rural and peri-urban communities in south Texas" (#0924232, Geography and Spatial Science, 9/2009-2/2013, $124,500)
  • Wind Energy Initiative, "Socio-economic impacts of wind energy," subcontract with NextEra Energy Resources/TCU, with Christian Brannstrom (TAMU), 1/09-12/11


  • Editor, Johns Hopkins University Press Book Series, Water and Society
  • Associate Editor (Human Water) -- Wiley WIRES Water
  • Editorial Board – Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Water Security
  • Editorial Board - Journal of Land Use Science

Post-Doctoral Scholars

  • Dr. Kyungsun Lee, Ph.D, Environmental Science and Policy, SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry
  • Dr. Gretchen Sneegas, Ph.D., Geography, University of Georgia
  • Dr. Amanda Fencl, Ph.D, Geography Program, UC Davis (starting 1 August)

Current and Former Students (Chair)

  • Victoria Harrington, M.S., Geography
  • Matt Stellbauer, Ph.D., Water Management and Hydrological Sciences Program
  • Flavia Bonolo Dantas, Ph.D., Geography
  • Anna Van der Grift, Ph.D., Geography
  • Amy Truong M.S., Water Management and Hydrological Sciences Program, Chair (HWISE Program Coordinator)
  • Kelli Condina, M.S., Geography
  • Sydney Beckner, M.S. Geography, 2018 (TWRI Research Associate)
  • Swetha, Peteru, Ph.D., Geography, 2016 (CIFOR Indonesia)
  • Tianna Bruno, M.S. Geography, 2016, Chair (PhD Program, Geography, University of Oregon)
  • Heather Lee Brown, Ph.D., Geography, 2016
  • Audrey Joslin, Ph.D., Geography, 2015 (Assistant Professor, Geography Kansas State University)
  • Emily Vandewalle, M.S. Geography, 2014 (Good Samaritan Community Services, San Antonio)
  • Abhineety Goel, Ph.D., Geography, 2013 (Assistant Professor, Environmental Studies, FLAME University, India)

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