A Conceptual Model for the Sustainable Governance of Integrated Management of National Water Resources with a Focus on Training and Capacity Building

Document Type : Research Paper


1 PhD Student, Environmental Education, Payam Noor University, Tehran, Iran

2 Assist. Prof., Deparrtment of Environmental Education, Payam Noor University, Tehran, Iran

3 Assoc. Prof., Department of Environmental Education, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran

4 Prof., Department of Environmental Education, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran


The instabilities over the past two decades in governing water resources have led to the need for an integrated approach to the problem. Moreover, the decent and sustainable governance of water resources has come to be recognized as the supplement to the integrated management of water resources. The present study strives to develop a conceptual model of water reources sustainable governance with emphasis on training and capacity-building. For this purpose, expert views presented to different international meetings and world conferences on water were reviewed to develop a comprehensive and all-embracuing conceptual model of sustainable governance for the integrated management of water resources with a focus on training and capacity-building. In a second stage of the study, both internationally published literature and the regulatory documents on water management approved at the national level were consulted to derive appropriate standards, criteria, and indicators for the implementation of the proposed conceptual model. The relevance of these indicators was validated by soliciting expert views while their stability was calculated via the Cronbach’s alpha formula to be 0.94. The third stage of the study involved the ranking and gradation of the indicators using the relevant software in a fuzzy decision-making environment based on interviews with 110 senior water executives, academics working in the field, senior agricultural managers, water experts in local communities, and NGO activists. The emerging model finally consisted of 9 criteria and 52 indicators, amongst which the criterion of public participation and the indicator of training and capacity-building won the highest scores. It may be claimed that the proposed conceptual model is quite relevant and adapted to the sustainable governance presently sought. The key roles in this model are played by public participation as well as training and capacity building that must be on the priority list of all policy makers and stakeholders in their decision making and planning efforts.


Main Subjects

Browne, A.L., 2015, "Insights from the everyday: Implications of reframing the governance of water supply and demand from ‘people’ to ‘practic", WIREs Water, 2, 415-424.
CapNet, GWP and UNDP., 2005, Training manual and operational guide, IWRM Planning.
Carmi, N., Arnon, S. & Orion, N., 2015, "Transforming environmental knowledge into behavior: The mediating role of environmental emotions", The Journal of Environmental Education, 46 (3), 183-201.
Despic, O. & Simonovic, S.P., 2000, "Aggregation opertators for soft decision making in water resources", Fuzy Sets and Systems, 115, 11-33.
Feldman, D. L., Sengupta, A., Stuvick, L., Stein, E., Pettigrove, V. & Arora. M., 2015, "Governance issues in developing and implementing offsets for water management benefits: Can preliminary evaluation guide implementation effectiveness?", WIREs Water, 2, 121-130.
GWP., 2009, The 3rd world water forum, Global Water Partnership, Stockholm, Sweden.
Iranian Water Policy Research Institute, 2014, Preliminary evaluation of the national water governance, IWPRI perspective, Tehran, Iran. (In Persian)
Labajos, R. & Alier, M., 2015, "Political ecology of water conflicts", WIREs Water, 2, 537-558.
Memariani, A., 2005, Guide of fuzzy decision making, Mahab Qods Consulting Engineers, Tehran.
(In Persian)
OECD, 2011, "Water governance in OECD countries: A multi level approach",
Palmer, J.A., 2003, "Environmental education in 21st Century", Translated by Khorshiddoost, A. M., 3rd  Ed., Samt Publishers, Tehran.
Pedregal, B., Cabello, V., Hernández Mora, N., Limones, N. & Del Moral, L., 2015, "Information and knowledge for water governance in the networked society", Water Alternatives, 8(2), 1-19.
Silva, A. C. S., Galvão, C. O. & Silva, G. N. S., 2015, "Droughts and governance impacts on water scarcity: An analysis in the Brazilian semi-arid", Copernicus Publications on behalf of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences, 369, 129-134.
Sternlieb, F. & Laituri, M., 2015, "Spatialising agricultural water governance data in polycentric regimes", Water Alternatives, 8(2), 36-56.
UNDESA/UNDP/UNECE., 2003, Governing water wisely for sustainable development, USA.
United Nations Committee of Experts on Public Administration., 2006, "Definition of basic concepts and terminologies in governance and public administration", United Nations Economic and Social Council, USA.
UN-Water., 2009, Water in a changing world, World Water Assessment Programme., The United Nations World Water Development. Report 3.
USAID., 2003, "Characteristics of integrated water resources managemen", United State Agency for International Development.
World Bank., 2002, Integrated water resources managemen, .
World Water Fourm, 2000, The 2nd World water forum, . The Hague