Factors that facilitate cooperative efforts in the management of irrigation water : an assessment of water user associations in the Jordan Valley




Altz-Stamm, Amelia Elizabeth

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User participation in the management of water resources has garnered much support over the past several decades. Questions remain for its feasibility and suitability as an alternative to state-led management. To examine the circumstances and contexts in which user-based management works well, studies from around the world have determined the kinds of factors related to the physical environment, community, institutions and users that can lead to its success or failure. This dissertation similarly examines Jordan’s experience with water user associations in the Jordan Valley through both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Potential influential factors that facilitate or hinder the performance of and participation in these associations are assessed through the Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) Framework. Results indicate that institutional factors play a particularly large role in determining the level of farmer satisfaction with the associations, and less so does the adequacy of the water supply. Despite Jordan’s extreme water scarcity, factors unrelated to the water supply have a stronger impact on association performance. For determining membership in the association, user-related factors demonstrate the most significance. Community-related factors remain unquantified but likely influence associations to a large degree. This research adds to the growing literature that identifies important factors and the magnitude of their effects on user management. The IAD framework acts as a useful tool to dissect user management and reveals where policy interventions will be most impactful.



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