Through the Smart Management for Small Water Systems project, the SWEFC works to improve the financial and managerial capabilities of small public water systems (those serving fewer than 10,000 people). The goal of the project is to help small water systems provide safe drinking water to their customers now and in the future by offering training and technical assistance to operators, managers, and decision makers.

The Smart Management for Small Water Systems project is a collaborative effort between the Environmental Finance Center Network (EFCN) and its partner, the American Water Works Association (AWWA). The EFCN is a consortium of nine university-based organizations creating innovative solutions to the difficult how-to-pay issues of environmental protection and improvement. The EFCN and its member EFCs work with both public and private sectors to promote sustainable environmental solutions while bolstering efforts to manage costs. This project is led by the Environmental Finance Center at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is co-managed by the Southwest Environmental Finance Center. Expert instructors from each Environmental Finance Center provide training and assistance. Small water systems can take advantage of training and resources through a variety of services provided at no charge to the utilities:

Services Provided

  • Classroom Trainings/Workshops
  • One-on-One Assistance
  • Small Group Sessions
  • Funder Forums
  • Webinars
  • Online Tools
  • eLearning Modules
  • Water Rates Dashboards
  • Blog Posts

Training and Assistance

  • Asset Management
  • Fiscal Planning and Rate Setting
  • Understanding Water Loss and Non-Revenue Water
  • Energy Management
  • Water System Collaboration and Partnerships
  • Leadership and Decision Makers
  • Workforce Development
  • Funding Coordination


Visit the EFC Network's WebsiteSmart Management for Small Water Systems website for a list of upcoming workshops and webinars, and to access tools and resources, as well as recorded trainings and webinars.


The Smart Management for Small Water Systems is made possible through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and is currently in its third round of funding. In the first round of funding, the EFCN partners provided technical assistance to more than 2,200 individuals and taught more than 100 workshops. Technical assistance and training was provided in all 50 states and in 4 U.S. Territories. To learn more about the impact of this project, see our state by state summaries on our website.

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