Massey University scientists will be pooling their knowledge to come up with new answers on river and fresh water issues.
A total of $80,000 has been invested in the innovative river solutions centre.
It will draw together researchers from a range of environmental and agricultural sciences at Massey, as well as tapping into local knowledge and international expertise.
Project leader Ian Fuller says it will concentrate initially on water management issues close to home.
Dr Fuller says one of the aims will be to produce a white paper on best practice for river management.