Due to the diversity and complexity of water problems, it is often challenging to identify the role of groundwater and adequately incorporate it in the decision-making process. Groundwater plays a major rule in water supply, food production, climate change, health, pollution and protection, settlements, the environment and disaster, conflict and human rights issues.

Topics are societal and environmental issues where groundwater plays a certain role. Each topic presented in the Groundwater Catalogue is supported by a systematic description that details the role of groundwater within that theme. Each topic is also linked to relevant measures and services hosted elsewhere in the catalogue.