Advanced

Decentralization: Resolve or Hide the Problem?

Nastar, Maryam LU and Islar, Mine LU (2011) Proceeding of 13th Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons- Sustaining Commons: Sustaining Our Future
Abstract
Governance of common resources such as water calls for rethinking structure, legal frameworks and property rights. In order to promote the decentralization of water governance, Water User Associations (WUAs) were created in many countries, such as India and Turkey, to operate and maintain irrigation systems as well as take over the responsibility of water distribution among water users. Despite progress in these activities, the efficacy of WUAs in terms of securing water rights for all water users has received criticism in some studies. By looking at the different power dynamics and thus inequalities, this paper assesses the performance of WUAs in Urfa province in Turkey. This includes a closer look at institutional arrangement of WUAs in... (More)
Governance of common resources such as water calls for rethinking structure, legal frameworks and property rights. In order to promote the decentralization of water governance, Water User Associations (WUAs) were created in many countries, such as India and Turkey, to operate and maintain irrigation systems as well as take over the responsibility of water distribution among water users. Despite progress in these activities, the efficacy of WUAs in terms of securing water rights for all water users has received criticism in some studies. By looking at the different power dynamics and thus inequalities, this paper assesses the performance of WUAs in Urfa province in Turkey. This includes a closer look at institutional arrangement of WUAs in effectively managing the irrigation systems and protecting water user’s access rights. The result of this study is used to explore the underlying problems associated with WUAs in promoting sustainable water governance in terms of equitable water access and allocation. This paper argues that due to asymmetric power relations in these regions, securing equal water access and allocation is unlikely to be achievable. In other words, in the absence of a fair process of decision-making, WUAs will fail to achieve the intended benefits of decentralization policies. This raises the need to critically assess the premise of structural reforms in the water sector and a careful consideration of the water governance practices in different contexts where inequalities are evident (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
host publication
Sustaining Commons: Sustaining Our Future, the Thirteenth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons. Digital Library of the Commons.
pages
13 pages
conference name
Proceeding of 13th Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons- Sustaining Commons: Sustaining Our Future
conference location
Hyderabad, India
conference dates
2011-04-10
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
8f721c73-5578-45b0-bcbf-88cfcd6fe18d
alternative location
http://dlc.dlib.indiana.edu/dlc/handle/10535/7278
date added to LUP
2018-02-19 09:30:06
date last changed
2018-11-21 21:38:04
@inproceedings{8f721c73-5578-45b0-bcbf-88cfcd6fe18d,
  abstract     = {Governance of common resources such as water calls for rethinking structure, legal frameworks and property rights. In order to promote the decentralization of water governance, Water User Associations (WUAs) were created in many countries, such as India and Turkey, to operate and maintain irrigation systems as well as take over the responsibility of water distribution among water users. Despite progress in these activities, the efficacy of WUAs in terms of securing water rights for all water users has received criticism in some studies. By looking at the different power dynamics and thus inequalities, this paper assesses the performance of WUAs in Urfa province in Turkey. This includes a closer look at institutional arrangement of WUAs in effectively managing the irrigation systems and protecting water user’s access rights. The result of this study is used to explore the underlying problems associated with WUAs in promoting sustainable water governance in terms of equitable water access and allocation. This paper argues that due to asymmetric power relations in these regions, securing equal water access and allocation is unlikely to be achievable. In other words, in the absence of a fair process of decision-making, WUAs will fail to achieve the intended benefits of decentralization policies. This raises the need to critically assess the premise of structural reforms in the water sector and a careful consideration of the water governance practices in different contexts where inequalities are evident},
  author       = {Nastar, Maryam and Islar, Mine},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Hyderabad, India},
  pages        = {13},
  title        = {Decentralization: Resolve or Hide the Problem?},
  year         = {2011},
}