Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Governance Arrangements for Integrated Water Re...

Electronic data

  • water-11-00663 (1)

    Final published version, 0.99 MB, PDF document

    Available under license: CC BY: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

Governance Arrangements for Integrated Water Resources Management in Ontario, Canada, and Oregon, USA: Evolution and Lessons

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

Article number663
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/03/2019
<mark>Journal</mark>Water (Switzerland)
Issue number4
Number of pages23
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Guidelines produced by some major international organisations create a misleading impression that Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) can be implemented in a standardized fashion. However, contextual conditions vary from place to place, and differences in beliefs, attitudes, customs, and norms sensibly influence interpretation and implementation. Experiences with IWRM in Oregon (USA) and Ontario (Canada) are examined with regard to scope, scale, responsibility, engagement, finances and financing, and review processes and mechanisms. Development of IWRM and the evolution of governance have been shaped by different concerns and beliefs. Oregon has adopted a locally-driven and entrepreneurial approach, whereas Ontario developed a co-operative inter-governmental approach. In both cases, IWRM governance has also evolved due to changes in funding and priorities, which have benefitted some catchments and communities more than others. Both cases provide positive examples of reflexivity and resilience, and demonstrate the importance of review processes and strong cross-scale connections for effective governance. While underlying principles may be relevant for other locations, it would be a mistake to think that either of the two approaches for IWRM could be replicated elsewhere in their exact form. Implementation of IWRM in other parts of those countries and the world should,therefore,start with careful analysis of the local context, and existing governance arrangements and governmentalities.