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integrated regional water management
I hereby call for a ban on using "Whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting over" to describe California (or any other) water politics. Instead, I suggest we use the phrase "whiskey is for drinking, water is for cooperation".
Now why would I possibly suggest discontinuing the use of such a colorful quote, from such a colorful historical figure as Mark Twain?
First, Mark Twain didn't say it. Or at least nobody can confirm that he said it. So really the quote is an urban legend that everybody seems to believe. For historical accuracy alone, it shouldn't be used.
I spent all day Tuesday and most of the day Wednesday at the conference for Integrated Regional Water Management Planning sponsored by the Water Education Foundation . I was invited to participate as a panelist on the future of IRWMP in California, in particular what criteria we should use to evaluate success. The invitation was stimulated by a paper that I wrote on a pilot study of the Bay Area IRWMP, which pointed out the challenges of IRWMP and suggested that the Bay Area had only made incremental changes from water politics as usual.
Our paper "Integrated Regional Water Management: A Study of Collaboration or Politics as Usual in California, USA" has been published in the International Review of Administrative Sciences. The data is from a pilot study of the Bay Area IRWM, and was written to introduce an international audience to what is happening in California and the type of research happening at CEPB. Although the data is only from one program, the overall discussion of theory behind IRWM is probably our most comprehensive to date. Here is a link: http://ras.sagepub.com/content/current
Can you manage water without thinking about people? I went to an eye-opening meeting between UC Davis researchers and many program managers at the California Department of Water Resources. DWR is the main state agency responsible for water supply infrastructure, and they are heavily based in the civil engineering profession. They are also responsible for publishing the California State Water Plan. The meeting was about funding research at UC Davis to help DWR make decisions and do water planning. Among the materials provided at the meeting was a big wish list of projects that UCD researchers might get involved with.
It is the day after the Leuphana conference on the EU Watershed Framework Directive. I'm relaxing and reflecting for a day in the beautiful town of Luneberg, Germany before the long trek back to Davis. Thanks to Jens Newig, Mariele Evers, Oliver Fritsch, and Leonie Lange for organizing the proceedings. The goal was a cross-country comparison of public participation and watershed management in the context of the WFD. I was invited to present some insights from watershed management in California and the US, as well as discuss the potential for the ecology of games framework to be applied across the EU member states at the watershed level.