As scarce water supplies in urban environments come under increasing pressure, water managers are forced to widen technical analyses to incorporate issues related to water governance. The concept of integrated water management has been developed to highlight that social, institutional and economic issues, in addition to technical and ecological considerations, need to be considered concurrently. In this paper, the integrated water management framework is used to highlight some of the social and institutional issues of concern to water management in the South Pacific. A case study of Suva, the rapidly growing capital of Fiji, is used to illustrate the complexity of the management issues facing Pacific Island countries. It is argued that the trend toward more systemic management of water resources is a positive one, but in the case of the Pacific Island countries much better accounts of inter-agency communication, community education, public engagement, institutional coordination, water pricing and water monitoring are needed.

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