Reconstituting Water Rights: Pathways for Polycentric Praxis

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2006

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Abstract

"Contemporary conflicts about water markets, vulnerability of rural rights to water, river basin organizations, privatization of water utilities, and water as a human right concern not only specific revisions to water policies, laws, and regulations, but disputes about how rules will be made. They raise questions about who takes part, the scope of rulemaking, concepts for framing discourse, decision procedures, and the authority of multiple institutions engaged in revising and enforcing rules regulating water resources. The difficulty of resolving such 'constitutional-level' issues explains some of the polarization, misunderstanding, and frustration apparent in efforts to reform water governance. Increased application of polycentric principles could open more pathways for solving collective action problems and expand options for the survival, creation, and transformation of common property in water."

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IASC, riparian rights, water users' associations, human rights, common pool resources

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