My latest article on water governance is now out

Nate Matthews and I have a new article out in the International Journal of Water Governance that compares the promises of “good water governance” in two very different contexts: the communist Lao PDR and liberal democratic Alberta. It’s part of a special issue on anarchy in water governance. The editorial introduction is available for free here. Our article is here, and if you want a copy shoot me an email as I expect to receive the finalized pdf any time now.


‘Good water governance’ in Lao PDR and Alberta, Canada emerged in different political contexts of, respectively, communism and democracy. Yet both espouse similar principles of participation, transparency and accountability. Drawing on multiple methods, this paper examines how contests over governance affect the adoption of, and mechanisms for, ‘good water governance.’ It gives particular emphasis to how both scale and context influence, and at times curtail, the promises of good water governance. In both Lao PDR and Alberta, we examine how governance mechanisms have been wielded by what we call closed communities. These communities are part of the dark side of water governance. They espouse good governance principles yet retain political power apart from them. We suggest good water governance is far from guaranteed by particular political systems, new institutions or even legislation.


  1. Michael H. Agar says:

    Hi Jeremy. I would like a copy of your article when the PDF lands. Thanks.

    Mike Agar

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