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UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft (2019)

Evaluating the role of participatory modelling in water conflicts

Garcia Lopez Lucia Carolina

Titre : Evaluating the role of participatory modelling in water conflicts

Auteur : Garcia Lopez Lucia Carolina

Université de soutenance : UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2019

This research is about the role of participatory modeling in water conflicts. The role of participatory modeling was evaluated in the context of the conflict of El Zapotillo project, which is located in Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco, Mexico. The Zapotillo project started with the aim to benefit both states through distribution of water from the Rio Verde Basin. The federal authorities promoted agreements between Jalisco and Guanajuato states for the project. El Zapotillo project involves the construction of El Zapotillo Dam and the infrastructure needed for the water transfer. Since its beginnings the Zapotillo project has been characterized by poor management by the government authorities who has failed to present data showing the need for the project. In 2006, the Zapotillo project becomes officially a conflict, when the federal government announces the displacement of communities without their previous consultation and these retaliate by proclaiming their official opposition. Since 2006, government authorities have not managed to implement a proper mechanism of conflict resolution. The state authorities of Jalisco led the last attempt to try to resolve the conflict when they hired UNOPS (the arm of UN who offer consultancies in technical and development projects), as a technical and external stakeholder. UNOPS’ final recommendations were to construct a dam of 105m, which implies the displacement of the communities. According to Godinez-Madrigal et al., (2018) UNOPS results only presented technical solutions, without taking into account, important variables, as future water demand, climate change and the social knowledge and impact. More than trying to find a solution to the conflict, UNOPS was trying to respond which technical solutions fit better in the Zapotillo project (ibid.).

Sujets  : water conflicts water management participatory modelling stakeholder participation Mexico


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