Skip to main content

Journal Information


PLOS Water connects researchers across the hydrology, water resources, and water, sanitation and hygiene communities, amplifying a diverse set of voices to influence the global discourse around fresh water. Our journal drives Open Science water research forward to foster a deeper understanding of these interconnected issues, and to empower researchers, local and Indigenous communities, water professionals, and organizations from across the globe to take positive, evidence-based action in order to address some of the most pressing issues our planet faces.


PLOS Water is an open-access journal that brings together research relevant to the study of water for people and planet. Our broad scope brings together diverse water research communities to promote multidisciplinary research and facilitate collaboration between the interconnected fields of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and water resources. 

PLOS Water publishes primary research conducted in a transparent, ethically and methodologically rigorous manner that contributes to the base of academic knowledge on a diverse range of water-related topics. These areas include water treatment, contamination, purification, quality, consumption, recycling, scarcity and supply, conservation, infrastructure, technology and engineering, applied governance and policy, equity, access, and environmental impacts, as well as ecosystem approaches, socio-behavioral, and economic studies relevant to these areas. 

All researchers who play a role in this global issue — including academics, government agencies, professional and community organizations, engineers, and water professionals — are encouraged to submit their research to the journal. We consider articles reporting primary research performed in a variety of settings and welcome laboratory, field, and computational work as well as systematic reviews, replication studies, and negative or null results.


PLOS Water publishes primary Research Articles, as well as occasional Editorials, Opinions, and Reviews.

Criteria for Publication

  1. The study presents the results of original research.
  2. Results reported have not been published elsewhere.
  3. Experiments, statistics, and other analyses are performed to a high technical standard and are described in sufficient detail.
  4. Conclusions are presented in an appropriate fashion and are supported by the data.
  5. The article is presented in an intelligible fashion and is written in standard English.
  6. The research meets all applicable standards for the ethics of experimentation and research integrity.
  7. The article adheres to appropriate reporting guidelines and community standards for data availability.

Editorial Oversight

The Editors-in-Chief and Executive Editor partner with an international board of Academic Editors to thoroughly review each submission.


Jenna Davis

Pierre Horwitz


Debora Walker

Submit Your Manuscript

For more information about submitting to PLOS Water, read our guidelines for preparing a submission.

Publication Fees

PLOS employs several business models to support equitable Open Access. A full list of our publication fees, funding initiatives and fee assistance information is available here.

Open Access

PLOS applies the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license to works we publish. Under this license, authors agree to make articles legally available for reuse, without permission or fees, for virtually any purpose. Anyone may copy, distribute, or reuse these articles, as long as the author and original source are properly cited. Learn more.

Journal Impact and Article Metrics

PLOS does not consider Impact Factor to be a reliable or useful metric to assess the performance of individual articles. PLOS supports DORA – the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment – and does not promote our journal Impact Factors. We will provide the metric to individuals when specifically requested.

Read more about our pledge with DORA.

PLOS promotes the use of Article-Level Metrics (ALMs), which enable scientists and the general public to engage more dynamically with published research. ALMs reflect the changing impact of research over time, incorporate academic as well as social impacts of research, and assess the impact of research before the accrual of academic citations. Read more about ALMs.

Indexing and Archiving

To ensure research is widely accessible and discoverable, PLOS submits all of our titles to major indexing services for evaluation as soon as possible according to the schedule of the specific service. PLOS Water began publishing its first articles in February 2022 and is currently indexed by the services listed below:

CABI CAB Abstracts, Crossref, Dimensions, DOAJ, Google Scholar.

We are continuing to work with services such as PubMed Central, Web of Science, MEDLINE, and Scopus and will update the list above as soon as the journal is indexed.


PLOS is a nonprofit, Open Access publisher empowering researchers to accelerate progress in science and medicine by leading a transformation in research communication.


Visit the Contact page for details about whom to contact with different queries.