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WATER GOVERNANCE IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA REGION:CHALLENGES AND PERSPECTIVES

Congress: 2008
Author(s):
Dr. G.A.Elhefnawy Faculty of Economics and Political Science Cairo University Geiza-Egypt E-mail (ghefnawy@hotmail.com )
AbstractWater governance represents the systems and processes which society sets in place to manage its water resources and deliver water services. It comprises a range of dimensions social, institutional, ecological, and economic whose relative importance will vary in different contexts. The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is considered one of the most water-poor and water-stressed regions of the globe. This situation contributes to poverty in the region and increases the risk of conflict between different users and different countries. Water management capacity varies widely, from outmoded systems, poorly managed, to modern integrated approaches and institutions. In all cases, however, future progress will depend on the emergence of innovative and effective water governance. Effective water governance in the new millennium requires developing new methods and approaches to suit the challenges and opportunities of this new era of globalization. The concept of water governance is multi-dimensional and often unclear. This introductory paper will attempt to explore viewpoints on water governance, management, and SD. The key objectives are to explain different perspectives on what is meant by the term water governance in the MENA region and consider questions such as: What does water governance mean?? What are its limits? What basic conditions must be in place, for water governance to be effective? What policy and institutional processes help or hinder effective water governance? The paper argues that it is essential that research and policy development fully takes account of the differing perspectives of water governance and make explicit the particular perspective(s) that they are taking. By being clear about our meaning of the concept, we can progress our understanding of water governance and its relationships to SD in the MENA region
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