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Center for Urban Waters on the Thea Foss Waterway
The University of Washington Puget Sound Institute is located at the Center for Urban Waters on Tacoma's Thea Foss Waterway.

About the Puget Sound Institute

Every day, Puget Sound policymakers are faced with tough choices. They must balance the needs of an ever-increasing number of people and a growing economy with a fragile and extraordinary ecosystem. Puget Sound, and by its larger reaches the Salish Sea, is a region of international significance that supports thousands of species and billions of dollars in natural resources. It is also home to world-leading environmental research that fuels innovative approaches to restoring and protecting this complex coastal sea. At the University of Washington Puget Sound Institute (PSI), our goal is to provide Puget Sound policymakers with relevant and timely analysis of the best and latest findings from the science community, allowing often-difficult choices to stand on solid, vetted science.

Since its founding in 2010, PSI has advanced our understanding of Puget Sound through synthesis, original research and communication in support of state and federal agencies, tribes and other organizations. PSI receives major funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Core ideas and activities

The independence of universities, combined with the unique academic culture of convening experts, puts us in a key position to provide elected leaders and policymakers with expert advice based on sound scientific information and principles.

We bring together leading authorities from a diversity of disciplines to conduct commissioned critical reviews and evaluations, providing credible, consensus-based information to the Legislature, government agencies and other interested groups. The institute also forms working groups to synthesize and communicate the available science to identify opportunities for progress on specific environmental issues.

Founding document

View the 14-page PDF under which PSI was established:

Puget Sound Ecosystem Research Initiative: Establishment of the Puget Sound Institute (pdf)