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Article
Publication date: 30 September 2019

Jorge Alejandro Silva Rodríguez de San Miguel

The purpose of this paper is to look at how the topic of water governance in the USA reflects the discussion just prior to the contemporary wave of privatisation that now…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to look at how the topic of water governance in the USA reflects the discussion just prior to the contemporary wave of privatisation that now characterises a large section of water in the country.

Design/methodology/approach

In addition to select classic articles, the body of literature chosen for review includes studies published between 2000 and 2019, using The PRISMA statement. Studies chosen were published in recognised journals in core disciplines relating to governance, water management, policy and regulation.

Findings

Private equity firms and water-focused investment funds are significant investors in private companies that operate municipal water works in the USA. This has caused much of the public water infrastructure in the country (and globally) to become privatised and held by international investors as securitised assets.

Research limitations/implications

There is a need for further primary research to more comprehensively capture what actions the US government are taking to carve out a large policy-making space for themselves in a country that there is not an extensive body of literature on takeover decisions in water governance.

Originality/value

The confluence of privatisation in water governance within the US government is an area of growing concern to those interested in how water governance systems and protocols shape broader justice and equality developments across the country.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 31 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2010

Margot Hill

It is increasingly recognised that water will be the prime medium through which climate change impacts will be felt. But water governance issues are already deemed to be a…

Abstract

Purpose

It is increasingly recognised that water will be the prime medium through which climate change impacts will be felt. But water governance issues are already deemed to be a prime cause of a global water issues. Not only will climate change affect the function and operation of existing water infrastructure and institutions but additionally, current frameworks may not be robust enough to cope with climate change impacts. Effective water governance is seen as essential to building adaptive capacity in communities to manage future climatic uncertainty and stress. The purpose of this paper is to assess socio‐economic and climate impacts on water governance.

Design/methodology/approach

As a first step in assessing adaptive capacity of two river basins, this paper explores current vulnerabilities in a Swiss water governance arrangement, and then proposes the subsequent implications for water resource management within a climate change context. It presents results from a governance assessment in the specific context of integrated water resource management and suggests a means to develop the assessment to address the issue of climate change and extreme events.

Findings

A low level of integration and highly segregated approach to water resources management suggests that the potential ramifications of climate change and expanding water uses may not be adequately reflected in their current governance framework.

Originality/value

The paper explores the current governance context in order to improve the understanding of how regulatory and institutional regimes may facilitate the development of adaptive capacity. It then proposes additional methodological steps to improve on such an assessment to take into better account the dynamic interplay between the human, hydrological and climate components of the system.

Details

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-8692

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 2 May 2018

Kate Pride Brown

This paper uses three case studies of urban water conflict in the United States in order to identify and compare solutions. Coupling qualitative data with a unique index…

Abstract

This paper uses three case studies of urban water conflict in the United States in order to identify and compare solutions. Coupling qualitative data with a unique index of municipal water conservation policy, I examine the different approaches that these three cities adopted in the face of water stress and conflict, as well as the relative strength each approach brought to water conservation. Based on 31 qualitative interviews with water stakeholders in three selected cities (Phoenix, San Antonio, Tampa) and qualitative comparative case histories drawn from newspaper accounts and secondary sources, I find that entrenched conflict over local water resources usually requires action from a higher governing authority, in accordance with theories of multilevel governance. However, multilevel governance is not sufficient to produce strong urban water conservation policies. It is also critical that policy be targeted to meet specific minimum environmental indicators to prevent continued resource depletion. Moreover, a breach of that environmental indicator must trigger some penalty for noncompliance to sustain the resource into the future.

Details

Environment, Politics, and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-775-1

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 15 May 2009

Margot Hurlbert, Harry Diaz, Darrell R. Corkal and Jim Warren

The purpose of this paper is to assess the successes and challenges of adaptation to climate change focusing on water governance institutions in Saskatchewan, a province…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the successes and challenges of adaptation to climate change focusing on water governance institutions in Saskatchewan, a province located in the western Canadian prairies.

Design/methodology/approach

A framework of vulnerability and adaptive capacity to the effects of climate change is employed. Data are obtained through qualitative research conducted through interviews and focus groups with stakeholders and people playing a role in water governance in Saskatchewan.

Findings

There have been many positive institutional developments which have improved Saskatchewan's adaptive capacity. The most promising is the creation of local watershed advisory committees that are poised to implement on‐the‐ground water management decisions. What is lacking, however, is a long‐term comprehensive climate change and adaptation plan, with built‐in flexibility to address present and future climate variability. Without a long‐term baseline plan and vision, Saskatchewan rural communities and the agricultural sector will remain vulnerable to present and future climate‐induced water stress.

Practical implications

The research shows a need for an increased inter‐disciplinary approach addressing environmental issues, and an increased need for academic‐government‐industry partnerships working towards capacity‐building for sustainable climate change adaptation responses.

Originality/value

This inter‐disciplinary research study is the first of its kind conducted in this region of Canada, and blends contributions from physical and social scientists, government and rural stakeholders.

Details

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-8692

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 March 2014

Luiz Fernando Macedo Bessa and Marcelo Facchina

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the reasons behind the difficulties in implementing proper participatory environmental and water governance systems in the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the reasons behind the difficulties in implementing proper participatory environmental and water governance systems in the metropolitan region of Brasilia, Brazil.

Design/methodology/approach

This work is a result of a the qualitative analysis of documents and reports of local participatory arenas in Brasilia, and is complemented by a set of 13 interviews held between November 2009 and March 2010 with a variety of actors involved in the promotion of sustainability in the region.

Findings

The findings reveal that impediments to the good performance of environmental governance in the Federal District are a consequence to two main factors: institutional framework poorly transferred from the national level and incompatibility between the set of regulations and local electoral power dynamics.

Research limitations/implications

As a consequence of the deliberate choice of one specific case, the conclusions of this paper may erroneously overemphasize the perils of participatory local governance rather than its potentials.

Practical implications

By identifying a series of mechanisms that threaten positive partnerships between governments and civil society at the local level, this work serves as an important tool for public managers and civil society to engage in more fruitful partnerships.

Originality/value

The paper provides a power-based analysis of a case of ineffectiveness of participatory mechanisms. In doing so, it also demonstrates that policy planning must be analysed from a variety of perspectives, and often involve coalitions that cut across the traditional state-society divide. The identification of the mechanisms behind the creation of these obstacles constitutes the originality and value of this paper.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 March 2019

Jorge Alejandro Silva Rodríguez de San Miguel

The purpose of this paper is to look at how water management reflects patriarchal considerations or gender biases that inflict a penalty upon Mexican women and enumerates…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to look at how water management reflects patriarchal considerations or gender biases that inflict a penalty upon Mexican women and enumerates recommendations that can both ameliorate water management across Mexico.

Design/methodology/approach

Peer-reviewed scholarly materials, carefully vetted for empirical worth, for the clarity and soundness of their research methodologies, and for their capacity to account for confounding or complicating factors, are reviewed. Special attention is given to studies, found in academic databases such as EBSCOHost, conducted in the years 2013–2018.

Findings

The Mexican state has finally made some progress in recognizing the hurdles women face in attaining educational equality, but there is not yet the universal application and comity that would ensure appropriate levels of representation in all communities. Mexico will have to do more to compel local actors to give greater credence to the voices of women.

Research limitations/implications

There is a need for further primary research to more comprehensively capture what actions women are taking to carve out a large policy-making space for themselves in a country that has only quite recently begun to realize the contributions women can make to forward-looking water governance policy.

Originality/value

The uneasy confluence between water governance and gender within the Mexican context is an area of growing concern to those interested in how water management systems and protocols shape broader social justice and equality developments across Mexico.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 30 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 6 November 2017

Lili Mundle, Marianne Beisheim and Lars Berger

This paper aims to analyze the relevance of private meta-governance for multi-stakeholder partnerships. The authors assume that meta-governance, defined as higher level…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyze the relevance of private meta-governance for multi-stakeholder partnerships. The authors assume that meta-governance, defined as higher level rules that shall guide partnerships’ governance activities, could build on and institutionalize lessons learned about partnerships’ success conditions and, in doing so, may render partnerships’ work more effective in the future.

Design/methodology/approach

The research paper investigates a case of non-state meta-governance in the standard-setting arena. It explores how actors assess the interaction of the meta-governance efforts of the International Social and Environmental Accreditation and Labelling (ISEAL) Alliance (mainly in the form of their three Codes of Good Practice) and the Alliance for Water Stewardship’s efforts when setting and implementing their International Water Stewardship Standard. For this, a combination of research methods is applied: a literature review for deriving propositions on success conditions; document analysis, participatory observation and semi-structured interviews for gathering empirical evidence on the interaction between meta-governance and the partnership’s work.

Findings

Respondents praise the benefits of ISEAL’s enabling meta-governance measures to strengthen their standard, structures and processes, as well as from ensuring activities, as these also improve their internal governance system while simultaneously providing credibility. In this context, they confirm the relevance of three success factors mentioned in the literature on voluntary standards: an inclusive process, a locally adapted design of the standard and institutionalized compliance management.

Practical implications

Instead of reinventing the wheel with every new multi-stakeholder partnership, meta-governance frameworks should be used to enable partnership staff and members, policymakers and stakeholders to learn from experience.

Originality/value

The authors’ analysis generates unique insights into perceptions of partnerships’ staff and stakeholders regarding lessons learned and private meta-governance. The present study on these actors’ perspectives provides a starting-point for further research on how meta-governance could help institutionalize success factors to scale-up and improve the impact of standard-setting partnerships.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 8 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 12 January 2021

Cristina Zurbriggen

Governance is becoming an increasingly important concept in European theoretical debates and in political practice as a new way to manage public policies, since the public…

Abstract

Governance is becoming an increasingly important concept in European theoretical debates and in political practice as a new way to manage public policies, since the public sector reforms in the 1980s. However, the debate in Latin America has different characteristics than in Europe, so it is necessary to provide a critical review of the proposed agenda for the transformation of the state in the region, and of the transfer of the concept of governance by multilateral agencies. To understand these changes, this chapter examines three key areas of reforms in Latin America and the privatization of public services, new social policy proposals, and the decentralization process. This will help us understand the tension between normative models and specific patterns of governance that prevail in Latin America.

Details

The Emerald Handbook of Public Administration in Latin America
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-677-1

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 31 July 2009

Margot Hurlbert

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the adaptive capacity of the institution of water law in two provinces of Canada, Alberta, and Saskatchewan, through the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the adaptive capacity of the institution of water law in two provinces of Canada, Alberta, and Saskatchewan, through the examination of several water conflict case studies in the last decade. By examining outcomes in cases of water shortage, legal mechanisms promoting adaptation can be identified and suggestions made for improving those which potentially increase vulnerability.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper explores several case studies situated in Western Canada, identified during interviews relating to a broader theme of water governance adaptation as part of the Institutional Adaptation to Climate Change (IACC) Project as well as other case studies carried out in the larger IACC project relating to the institutional adaptation to climate change in Canada and Chile. The outcomes of these case studies are examined in relation to their effect on vulnerability and their inter‐relationship to established principles of water law.

Findings

This examination provides insight into the actual workings of water law in resolving water conflicts and important modifications in the institution of water law which will increase adaptive capacity. These cases illustrate that legal provisions which facilitate timely engagement of civil society to water shortages in an all inclusive participatory process provides optimal conflict resolution.

Originality/value

These case studies provide important insights for the development of law and policy which reduces vulnerability and assists people in adapting to climate change in a resilient, effective manner.

Details

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, vol. 1 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-8692

Keywords

Abstract

Details

SDG6 – Clean Water and Sanitation: Balancing the Water Cycle for Sustainable Life on Earth
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-103-3

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