Beyond Access: Comparative Analysis of Non-material Dimensions of Water Insecurities
Highlights: Awarded a SSHRC Insight Grant, this research project has three goals. First, it advances conceptualization and empirical evidence for non-material elements of water insecurity. Second, it examines theoretical and empirical linkages between household water (in)security and citizen engagement and participation across case study sites (e.g. South Africa, Brazil, Canada). Third, it develops and extends narrative, visual, and comparative methods for water insecurity studies. This project will contribute to our understanding of meanings and experiences of water insecurity and how these impinge on engagement and other key features of water governance.
EDGES Comparative Water Governance in urban sites in Africa Research project (CWGAR)
Highlights: The EDGES Africa Research Project is a comparative and collaborative project based at UBC with partners at the University of Ghana in Legon and at the University of Western Cape, South Africa. The project compares the effects of neoliberal policies and market instruments in the water realm (such as privatization, marketization, devolution, full-cost recovery measures, etc.) for water access and participatory governance, with particular focus on informal and underserved settlements.
First Nations and the shifting water governance landscape of British Columbia
Highlights: As part of the SSHRC-funded WEPGN: Water Economics Policy and Governance Network, the Program on Water Governance began a new project in 2013: First Nations and the shifting water governance landscape of British Columbia This research explores some of the interactions between First Nations and water governance in the context of British Columbia. The project is guided by an environmental justice framework, and involves a commitment by the researchers and PoWG to engage collaboratively with communities. First Nations have articulated their strong ties to water and recognize it as a vital and sacred resource for sustaining health and culture. Working towards these issues in the context of water justice begins first with acknowledgment of First Nations’ inherent right to govern their water resources in accordance with cultural preferences and practices, and also that these issues cannot be abstracted from broader governance challenges important for these communities.
Gender Implications of Putting a Price on Water
Highlights: As part of the Water Economics, Policy and Governance Network (WEPGN), PoWG researchers are working with colleagues at York University (led by D. Scott of the Osgoode Law School) to investigate gender dimensions of water pricing and other market instruments in the Canadian context. The project “Gender Implications of Putting a Price on Water” aims to explore the rise of water privatization and commodification in Canada, and their current or possible impacts on women in Ontario and British Columbia.
Metro Manila Water Privatization Project
Highlights: This research project will study the privatization of the Metropolitan Waterworks & Sewerage System (MWSS), the agency tasked to provide water and sewerage services for 16 million Metro Manila residents. Hailed as the largest privatization program in the world for a water utility, this program has had two private firms providing water services since 1997. Even as the Metro Manila water privatization and other similar programs have been acknowledged as successful endeavors in certain respects, there is still continuing debate on whether or not water privatization benefits the poor.
NextGen Project: Training the Next Generation of Community-based Researchers
Highlights: The NextGen Project is funded by a SSHRC Partnership Development Grant and is led by Budd Hall, University of Victoria. Colleagues and EDGES members from the Institute for Resources Envirronment and Sustainability and the Program on Water Governance are partners responsible for the water governance components of the project. The goal of the project is to establish a global partnership for training in Community Based Research, including creating an open source database on training materials for researchers, professors, and NGOs.
Highlights: The network will advance the understanding water resilience and security in the face of increasing climatic and hydrologic variability including the governance, socio-institutional, and equity dimensions of this challenge while maintaining a focus on urban dynamics, and urban-rural linkages.