Abstract

The question of how to govern and manage transboundary river basin for competing and often conflicting demands due to limited supplies continues to be an issue of concern, conflict, and cooperation. A key novelty of this paper is the use of the Water Diplomacy Framework (WDF) to address supply-demand mismatch using the notion of collaborative problem-solving and joint fact-finding. It builds on innovative applications of game-theoretic approaches and uses equity and sustainability as guiding principles to address the supply-demand mismatch. Five different bankruptcy methods (net benefit ranges between US$17,462M to US$18,201M) and the Nash Bargaining Solution (net benefit ranges between US$18,132M to US$19,216M) are used to resolve supply-demand mismatch in the Indus basin among four provinces within Pakistan. The maximum total benefit generated from the Nash Bargaining Solution is 5.5% higher compared to the best bankruptcy method. Moving from the non-cooperative and rule-based bankruptcy methods to the Nash Bargaining Solutions provided increased benefit for all stakeholders. Reallocation of these increased benefits among the four provinces is done by applying the Nash Bargaining Solutions for homogenous and heterogeneous weights. These findings suggest that aspects of WDF – cooperative problem-solving approaches involving joint fact-finding and exploring different options – has the potential to simultaneously resolve supply-demand mismatch and generate more benefits for all stakeholders.

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