Edited by Jack W. Meek
Globally, management of scarce freshwater resources presents governments and communities with challenges. These are often referred to as wicked problems because they bring together natural, socio-economic and environmental viewpoints and their solutions must accommodate the changing nature of human societies and their values relating to freshwater. The institutional contexts in which water governance takes place tend to be complicated, often spanning multiple governmental jurisdictions and involving multiple actors and action arenas. This chapter explores collaborative approaches that have been used in the governance of freshwater, through a collaborative governance and integrated water management theory lens. Three case studies, two from New Zealand and one from the United States of America, with a regional, subnational and national focus, illuminate how these collaborative governance processes worked to achieve solutions to freshwater governance. While the collaborative approaches offer novel solutions, their co-existence with traditional bureaucratic governance presents challenges to their durability.
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