The beginnings of the IAH Urban Groundwater Network date back to 1993 when the Commission on Groundwater in Urban Areas (CGUA) was formed in Oslo by David Lerner (most recently Prof. of Civil Engineering at Sheffield University, UK). Early activities included:
- A series of workshops presented at IAH Congress meetings in Adelaide,
1994, Edmonton, 1995 and Nottingham, 1999.
- Two-day workshops held in Aachen 1995 and Goteborg
- A Special Issue of Hydrogeology Journal.
- Publication of a Bibliography
of Urban Hydrogeology (organised by Chester Svensson of Chalmers University in Sweden)
- Development of an Urban Groundwater Database
(through Claus Otto of CSIRO, Australia).
In September, 1997, Prof. Lerner, the Chair of CGUA stepped down after four very successful years and Ken Howard took over the role of Chair with Matthias Eiswirth of the University of Karlsruhe as Co-Chair. This led the Commission in a new direction with regular Congress sessions and a series of highly productive urban groundwater workshops held in Baku during the early 200's
Proceedings of a session on urban groundwater held at the IGC meeting in Florence, 2004 were published in the IAH green book series and dedicated in the memory of Matthias.
After many years of productive work (see Publications and Annual Reports ), the Commission on Groundwater in Urban Areas was dissolved on June 30th, 2011 and re-emerged the next day as the Urban Groundwater Network with Ken Howard as Director.
Helen Bonsor of the British Geological Survey took over as Director of the UGN in the spring of 2015.