Here are four more worthwhile papers examining IWRM - Integrated Water Resources Management. They appeared in a recent special issue of the International Journal of Water Resources Development (Volume 30, Issue 3). These four papers focus on IWRM in four countries.
1) Too much of a good thing? Building social capital through knowledge transfer and collaborative networks in the southern Philippines, by Declan Hearne & Bronwyn Powell, International WaterCentre, Brisbane, Australia
Meaningful engagement of diverse stakeholders is essential for ensuring support for science-based responses to complex watershed challenges. A collaborative network in the Davao river basins, in the Philippines, provides evidence of an approach that enabled integration of science into local decision making and increased bonding social capital between shared-interest groups. Insufficient attention towards bridging and linking social capital allowed bottlenecks between policy and implementation to persist. This ‘dark side’ of social capital was evidenced by entrenched sector positions and lower levels of trust between different interest groups. A social-learning approach is recommended to create new spaces for productive ‘bridging’ relationships.
2) IWRM in England: bridging the gap between top-down and bottom-up implementation, by Nigel Watson, Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, UK
Implementation of IWRM has generally been approached mechanistically, with attention focused on identifying necessary conditions and developing useful tools and techniques. In contrast, this article examines alternative approaches to implementation in their totality, using IWRM in England as a case analysis. In England, the EU Water Framework Directive has been implemented through a ‘top-down’ approach but a ‘bottom-up’ approach has been adopted for catchment management. Both the Water Framework Directive and the catchment-based approach are consistent with the goals of IWRM, but their implementation arrangements are disconnected and operate at different scales. This example suggests that cross-scale interplay and bridging institutions are critical to the successful implementation of IWRM in complex governance settings.
3) Legislative and institutional reforms for water resources management in Ghana, by Clement Dorm-Adzobu, Institut fur Socialwissenschaften, Bienroder Weg 97, D-38092 Braunschweig, Germany & Ben Yaw Ampomah, Water Resources Commission, Accra, Ghana
The management of water resources among traditional societies in Ghana has been based on indigenous knowledge systems and practices. Colonial administrations subsequently vested water administration at the central level, without proper coordination, resulting in disjointed management systems. When a new constitution was adopted in 1992, constitutional requirements resulted in an overhaul of the legislative and institutional framework for water resources management. The old sector-based legislative instruments have been reviewed; a Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing has been created for policy direction; and an act of Parliament has established a Water Resources Commission to regulate and manage the utilization of Ghana’s fresh-water resources.
*Department of Geography and Environmental Management, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada; **Conservation Halton, Burlington, Canada; ***Department of Geography, Centre for Environment and Sustainability, University of Western Ontario, London, Canada; ****Department of Geography, Nipissing University, North Bay, Canada
The lessons and opportunities of integrated water resource management in Ontario are described by focusing attention on conservation authorities: watershed-based agencies formed between 1946 and 1979. Six foundational principles of the programme are explained: the watershed as the management unit; local initiative; provincial– municipal partnership; a healthy environment for a healthy economy; a comprehensive approach; and cooperation and coordination. Illustrative examples from the Grand River and Halton Region conservation authorities provide the basis for conclusions. The six principles have served the integrated water resource management programme well. In addition, the ability to make difficult budgetary decisions and adapt to changing public need has contributed to the conservation authorities’ success.
"The free thinking of one age is the common sense of the next." - Matthew Arnold