Current water management practices have failed to achieve sustainable water for all and, at times, reinforce the imbalance of power between water users. Conflict around water often takes place quietly: more powerful actors control – either politically or economically – who gets water and when, while less powerful actors lack the ability to motivate alternative or more equitable access to water. There are many reasons for these inequities, but they often relate to misunderstandings around the value of water and its role in collective water and food security.
The SEI US Program on Water for Ecosystems and Livelihoods uses a range of economic methods to explore a more holistic understanding of the value of water that can address both sustainability and inequities.
By showing the benefits of cooperation across national and sector boundaries, MYWAS opens the possibility of dialogues in contentious conflicts around water.