Professor Karen Bakker addressed the members of the Canada-US Boundary Waters International Joint Commission at the invitation of UBC President Stephen Toope, on the subject of Canada-US transboundary water governance.
Feb 14th 2013: Professor Karen Bakker will address the members of the Canada-US Boundary Waters International Joint Commission at the invitation of UBC President Stephen Toope, on the subject of Canada-US transboundary water governance.
December 6th, 2012: Professor Karen Bakker spoke at an invitation-only meeting on the Human Right to Water at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies.
October 19th 2012: Professor Karen Bakker spoke at the University of Arizona on the topic of: Water security and the global water ‘crisis’, co-hosted by the Department of Geography and Development the Institute of the Environment.
Contemporary Water Governance in the Global South edited by Leila Harris (PoWG), Jacqueline Goldin and Christopher Sneddon will be out in May 2013.
The litany of alarming observations about water use and misuse is now familiar␣over a billion people without access to safe drinking water; almost every major river dammed and diverted; increasing conflicts over the delivery of water in urban areas; continuing threats to water quality from agricultural inputs and industrial wastes; and the increasing variability of climate, including threats of severe droughts and flooding across locales and regions. These issues present tremendous challenges for water governance.
This book focuses on three major concepts and approaches that have gained currency in policy and governance circles, both globally and regionally scarcity and crisis, marketization and privatization, and participation. It provides a historical and contextual overview of each of these ideas as they have emerged in global and regional policy and governance circles and pairs these with in-‐depth case studies that examine manifestations and contestations of water governance internationally. The book interrogates ideas of water crisis and scarcity in the context of bio-physical, political, social and environmental landscapes to better understand how ideas and practices linked to scarcity and crisis take hold, and become entrenched in policy and practice. The book also investigates ideas of marketization and privatization, increasingly prominent features of water governance throughout the global South, with particular attention to the varied implementation and effects of these governance practices. The final section of the volume analyzes participatory water governance, querying the disconnects between global discourses and local realities, particularly as they intersect with the other themes of interest to the volume. Promoting a view of changing water governance that links across these themes and in relation to contemporary realities, the book is invaluable for students, researchers, advocates, and policy makers interested in water governance challenges facing the developing world.
Click here to order your copy.
Karen’s most recent article on water security was published in Science on 24th August 2012.
Bakker, K. (2012). Water Security: Research Challenges and Opportunities. Science. 337 (6097): 914-915. DOI: 10.1126/science.1226337
ABSTRACT: An estimated 80% of the world’s population faces a high-level water security or water-related biodiversity risk (1). The issue of water security—defined as an acceptable level of water-related risks to humans and ecosystems, coupled with the availability of water of sufficient quantity and quality to support livelihoods, national security, human health, and ecosystem services (2, 3)—is thus receiving considerable attention. To date, however, the majority of academic research on water security is relatively poorly integrated with the needs of policy-makers and practitioners; hence, substantial changes to funding, education, research frameworks, and academic incentive structures are required if researchers are to be enabled to make more substantive contributions to addressing the global water crisis.
The final product of the four-year Water Security Project is now available to download.
The Water Security Guidance Document, is a free document developed for small communities to assess risk to water security in their watershed (but many of the concepts and issues are applicable at larger scales). The Water Security Guidance Document contains a broad range of information for both experts and non-experts. Click here for more information and to download the documents.
The Program on Water Governance 2011 Annual Report is now available online. For more information on our Annual Reports click here.