Sound water management is considered a prerequisite
for sustainable development. Water quality, water supply, floods and water
scarcity have profound impacts. Improved governance of water resources and
water services is, therefore, of crucial importance for society, its people and
governance theme seeks to explore, understand and improve the efforts of
societies in governing their water resources and water services. The water governance investigates
how sustainable water management can be supported and improved by various
dimensions and characteristics of governance in public and private spheres. The intense diversity and at the same time
interrelatedness of sectors, scales and timeframes that characterize societies
are extremely visible in relation to water system, water use and water
treatment. The question of how to cope
with these kind of complexities and dynamics by adaptive governance strategies
enabling boundary spanning and collaboration is the core of the scientific
focus of the program.
This manifests in research projects on behavioral,
organizational and institutional drivers for transitional change of water
systems, water use and water treatment. Multi-theoretical frameworks are adopted for
this research, including theories on the
policy process, network analysis, multi-level arrangements and interactions,
innovation and diffusion, public participation, policy instruments and other
incentive and resource structures.
To facilitate valorization we among others participate
in the national Advisory Committee on Water and the Visitation Committee on the
Water Chain. We collaborate with governments, industry and the broader society.
This reaches from water boards to the Dutch Delta Program and the so-called
Topsector Water, one of the national innovation programs in which Dutch
government, knowledge institutes and the private sector cooperate.