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What we do

The FBA, founded in 1929 and a charity since 1966 (Charity number 214440), aims to promote freshwater biology and the sound and sustainable management of freshwater systems. Located at two centres in the UK, in Cumbria (Windermere) and Dorset (the River Laboratory), we serve a global community, promoting freshwater science through membership services, research and information dissemination. Historically closely associated with academics and professional water resource managers, our products and services are nowadays being designed also to appeal to those with a general interest in freshwater biology, including young people and amateur enthusiasts. We are regarded as one of the UK's foremost providers of information about fresh waters, including identification guides, training courses, scientific meetings and both physical and electronic information holdings. FBA training courses attract as tutors the most highly respected experts in the UK.

Our major achievements are as follows:

  1. Historically, as a research organisation, developing the understanding of ecological processes in rivers and lakes upon which research and management worldwide now depends.
  2. Publication of identification guides to freshwater organisms that are regarded as the definitive guides for Britain, Ireland and, in some cases, further afield.
  3. Publication of online-first journals, including Freshwater Reviews and, on behalf of the International Society of Limnology, Inland Waters, managed and disseminated in-house on our own journal management software.
  4. Initiation of training for those who require the skills for effective study and identification of freshwater organisms. Using high quality facilities and the acknowledged national experts as tutors, these provide high quality training for all levels and categories of students.
  5. Creation of high quality research and training facilities at our two sites.
  6. Maintenance of what has become probably the world's largest and most comprehensive library and information resource on freshwater biology.
  7. Innovative approaches to data sharing amongst researchers, including a repository of scientific data, images and bibliographic information along with associated tools.
  8. Initiation of the FBA Conferences in Aquatic Biology, a prestigious series of international conferences held approximately every two years.
  9. An informal Annual Scientific Meeting, and support of regional freshwater groups in the UK.
  10. Maintenance of a committed and enthusiastic global membership of individuals who are passionate about understanding our freshwater environments and using the best information available to improve their conservation and management.

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