ECSAS 2023 – Turin 26-29 July

46 – Sustainable Regeneration of Water Infrastructures: An Invitation to Forge Interdisciplinary Governance & Policy Design Thinking

The combination of water stress and climate change is resulting in significant hydrological changes that impose major risks to economy and society. This increases vulnerability among the most disadvantaged and impacts a range of different life and livelihood concerns – drinking water, sanitation, health, irrigation, changes in agriculture, aquaculture, forests, and commons.

Convenors

Shailaja Fennell - University of Cambridge, Centre of South Asian Studies and Department of Land Economy, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Satyajit Singh - University of Santa Barbara, Global Studies, Santa Barbara, United States

Long Abstract

The combination of water stress and climate change is resulting in significant hydrological changes that impose major risks to economy and society. This increases vulnerability among the most disadvantaged and impacts a range of different life and livelihood concerns – drinking water, sanitation, health, irrigation, changes in agriculture, aquaculture, forests, and commons.

The panel seeks to bring in local voices, as such articulation is not commonplace in ongoing discussions on water and climate change crises. It also aims to gather diverse evidence of disruptions in livelihoods and collect different emerging adaptation initiatives that help us discuss the governance and policy design challenges. For instance, in many parts of South Asia, there continue to exist elements of past water infrastructure that are still functional. Policy makers are asking whether heritage infrastructures can improve the sustainability of modern agricultural systems, such as Mission Kakatiya, a Telangana state initiative that advocates the restoration of reservoirs. These new explorations could be interpreted as the value of older water governance systems in designing water infrastructures or as a response to the failures in existing governance structures and requiring innovative thinking.

The submissions will collectively highlight the complex maze of policy design and implementation necessary for managing the risks of climate change. Individual contributions focussing on local and sub-national solutions will facilitate thinking of problems/solutions at a grainy level. Drawing on a network across a range of disciplines in the social sciences we encourage papers to address questions such as: how problems in the current availability of infrastructure influence the theoretical and empirical research in reviving/redesigning infrastructures?  What is the evidence of disruptions in livelihoods? And how have methods being devised to collect different emerging adaptation initiatives?

The submissions will collectively highlight the complex maze of policy design and implementation necessary for managing the risks of climate change. Individual contributions focussing on local and sub-national solutions will facilitate thinking of problems/solutions at a grainy level. Drawing on a network across a range of disciplines in the social sciences we encourage papers to address questions such as: how problems in the current availability of infrastructure influence the theoretical and empirical research in reviving/redesigning infrastructures?  What is the evidence of disruptions in livelihoods? And how have methods being devised to collect different emerging adaptation initiatives?