Programme OS5k Local water governance
Defining rules for model use in participatory water management
Author(s): A case
study in The Netherlands
Author(s): Pieter Bots, Rianne Bijlsma, Yorck Von Korff, Nicolien Van Der Fluit, Henk Wolters
Yorck von Korff: Cemagref, Montpellier
Fluit: Consultant to water board Velt & Vecht, The Netherlands
Henk Wolters: RIZA, The Netherlands
Keyword(s): participatory policy making, groundwater level management,
hydrological models, process management, rules of the game, Natura2000
Session: OS5k Local water governance
In this paper we develop a set of 'rules of the game' for using hydrological models in participatory decision-making
processes regarding ground- and surface level management in The Netherlands.
The ideas we develop are
informed by an empirical case study in the Vecht river catchment area in The Netherlands. By the end of 2007, the
water boards in the eastern parts of the Netherlands should have defined a 'balanced ground- and surface water
regime' (GGOR in Dutch) for the water systems under their jurisdiction. Our case concerns the Bargerveen: a nature
conservation area that recently acquired Natura2000 status.
Ground water levels are controversial because
farmers and nature conservation agencies have diverging interests. In spring 2006 the water board Velt en Vecht has
launched a participatory process for defining a GGOR for the Bargerveen area. The authors have been involved in
this process from the start.
One of the complicating factors for this particular decision-making process is the lack
of an authoritative hydrological model. In the past 10 years, several models have been used to resolve water
management issues in this region, but all of them have been challenged by stakeholders.
In this paper, we
investigate the role of models in this type of participatory water policy making. Building on concepts from applied
social science, policy science, and process management we address the following questions:
- What are the
different problem perceptions in this particular context?
- Do hydrologial models introduce a bias in problem
definition, and to what extent does this reduce the problem resolution space?
- How can hydrological models be
used effectively in a multi-stakeholder setting even when their validity is questioned?
We will propose a
framework for reflection and design - based on four dimensions of participatory processes: substance, progress,
openness and protection of core values - that guides the definition of 'rules of the game' for the development and
use of hydrological models in a participatory process. We will illustrate its application using the Bargerveen case,
which leads to the identification of a number of barriers that may impede its implementation.
(séparées par virgules) : participatory policy making, groundwater level management, hydrological models, process
management, rules of the game, Natura2000