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Multi-Stakeholder Platforms: Integrating Society in Water Resource Management?

Author:  Jeroen Warner
Publication Date: 2006

The paper describes MSP’s as an important companion to Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM), a vital component in an environment of increasing degrees of variety and variability which integrates:

  • Relations between surface and groundwater, quantity and quality
  • Relations between water and land use (environment)
  • Relations between water and stakeholder interests
  • Relations between water-related institutions

Re-conceptualising MSP’s as networks, the author examines the two main viewpoints on the use of MSP’s; MSP’s as spaces for negotiation on conflict and cooperation and as processes for social learning. In the context of water resource management, the paper presents and discusses the six main types of MSP's:

  • Social Network
  • Focus Group
  • Service Organisation
  • Crisis Management Organisation
  • Action Alliance
  • River Basin Organisation

The paper concludes by discussing the need to have an audience and an element of action written in to the foundations of an MSP in order to keep it relevant and useful.