The three riparian states that share the perennial flow of the Okavango watercourse system established the Permanent Okavango River Basin Water Commission (OKACOM) as a basis for managing that river's basin. The institution has a collective responsibility to advise the basin states about the best options for joint utilisation and protection of the basin. This complex task is compounded by the pristine nature of the ecosystems, the pressing development needs of all the basin states and international pressure to protect the unique Okavango Delta. The development of the basin for the benefit of the population requires an understanding of the potential of the natural resources to support identified development options. The Commission is responsible for ensuring good collective governance that meets the objectives and expectations of the sovereign basin states, while strengthening the levels of governance in each individual state. This case study examines the relevance of the trialogue hypothesis, which states that effective interactions between political, social and scientific processes are essential for good governance. The study has revealed that the close relationship between the political will to create a management institution, understanding the needs of civil society and facilitating the scientific investigations required for planning purposes supports the trialogue hypothesis of good environmental governance.
Research Article|November 01 2007
Governance of a shared and contested resource: a case study of the Okavango River Basin
Water Policy (2007) 9 (S2): 149-167.
P. S. vH. Heyns; Governance of a shared and contested resource: a case study of the Okavango River Basin. Water Policy 1 November 2007; 9 (S2): 149–167. doi: https://doi.org/10.2166/wp.2007.133
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