Team C: Water Management Practices and Governance
The resilience of Prairie communities is tightly tied to making decisions for water secure futures for individuals, communities, and whole watersheds. Understanding how water and wetlands are managed under a changing climate, under reconciliation, and as part of changing agricultural production and landuse demands are important considerations in this context.
Water management decisions depend on policies and the associated governance context as well as the behavior and incentives of individuals. With the accumulating scientific evidence on the variety of Prairie water issues, we need to better understand how this evidence is used in the decision-making process. Furthermore, alternative water management practices can impose economic costs on individuals. Understanding these is critical for developing effective policies that achieve environmental objectives while minimizing costs.
Ultimately, improving our understanding of the forces behind water management in the region, and their role in the complex social-ecological systems that govern the state of water in the Prairies, is needed to contribute to adaptive capacity that promotes resilience.
There is a pressing need to examine the state and effectiveness of current water management practices, to understand the motivations and incentives driving these decisions, as well as to understand the context within which scientific evidence is used in the decision-making process in the region. Improving our understanding of the forces behind water management in the region, including their role in the complex social-ecological systems that govern the state of water in the Prairies, is needed to contribute to adaptive capacity that promotes resilience.
The work planned for Team C links to the research activities of Teams A and B to: understand motivations behind water management decisions at local (individual) and broad (legislative) levels, assess the economic implications of wetland conservation and associated ecosystem services, and evaluate the connections between these decisions and their impact on social-ecological systems.
Explore Team C
Helen Baulch, Ken Belcher, Roy Brouwer, Patrick Lloyd-Smith, Phil Loring, Graham Strickert, Andrew Watson
- Producers and agricultural groups
- Watershed stewardship groups
- Regulators and governments
Objective C1: Understand policy landscapes for water management across the Prairie provinces, with
a focus on agricultural wetland drainage policies
Objective C2: Assess the economic and socio-ecological implications of wetland conservation across
the Canadian Prairies
Objective C3: Assess how social-ecological factors, information use, and water sharing relationships
are used in making water management decisions
Interprovincial legislative review of agriculture water management
Construction of a farm simulation model
Agriculture economics producer survey
Experimental decision laboratories - water sharing, evidence, and values in decision making
Assessment of priviate costs of wetland management in the Vermillion River Basin
Co-creation of a Indigenous Water Governance Framework with Mistawasis Nehiyawak
Systematic review of water policies and governance in the Prairie Provinces
Participatory modelling and social learning in community flood risk planning
Using water stories when developing watershed management plans
Construction of Experimental Decision Laboratories
Bradford, L., A. Thapa, A. Duffy, E. Hassanzedah, G. Strickert, B. Noble, and K.-E. Lindenschmidt. (2019) Incorporating social dimensions in hydrological and water quality modeling to evaluate the effectiveness of agricultural beneficial management practices in a Prairie River Basin. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. DOI: 10.1007/s11356-019-06325-1
Thapa, A., L. Bradford, G. Strickert, X. Yu, A. Johnston, and K. Watson-Daniels. (2019) “Garbage In, Garbage Out” does not hold true for indigenous community flood extent modeling in the Prairie Pothole Region. Water. 11: 2486. DOI: 10.3390/w11122486