Water resources management and allocation

Water distribution in Martissant, Port-au-Prince, Haiti (Flickr: Ivan M. García/Intermón Oxfam http://www.flickr.com/photos/oxfam/4330166168/)

Competition for water – between uses and users, between regions and countries – is increasing. As competition and scarcity grows, there will be an increasing need for rules-based systems that can allocate water fairly and protect the claims of the poorest.  Our work is looking at some of the trade-offs involved, and how water rights and markets could be strengthened.

Key research issues include water futures - the drivers of change affecting supply and demand in different contexts and at different scales; planning for extreme events, particularly droughts and floods; and water rights protecting the claims of vulnerable water users as pressure to transfer water increases.