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Adaptation to Climate and Water Variability

2010 research in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia,
on urban adaptation to climate variability including peri-urban farmers' adaptation to water pollution

2008-10 Moving Forward: Adaptation and Resilience to Climate Change, Drought, and Water Demand
in the Urbanizing Southwestern U.S. & Northern Mexico (C. Scott, co-PI, 33%). $286,931, National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, Sectoral Applications Research Program (SARP).

2007-08 Information Flows and Policy:
Use of Climate Diagnostics and Cyclone Prediction for Adaptive Water-Resources Management Under Climatic Uncertainty in Western North America (C. Scott, deputy-PI, 50%). $147,286, Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research.

Scott, C.A., N. Pineda Pablos. 2011 in press. Innovating resource regimes: water, wastewater, and the institutional dynamics of urban hydraulic reach in northwest Mexico. Geoforum doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2011.02.003.

The twin facets of urban hydraulic reach - cities' appropriation of water from surrounding regions and irrigation use of urban wastewater over a growing rural footprint - form an emerging global policy challenge, especially as democratizing societies seek institutional means to address both urban growth and water scarcity. A central concern of this paper is to demonstrate that policy regionalism, as a process based understanding of institutions and decision-making, better explains the causes, forms, and outcomes of hydraulic reach than do more structural approaches. Hermosillo, Mexico presents an unfolding case of rural-urban tension for control over rivers and aquifers as well as the infrastructure for water capture, storage, conveyance, and wastewater release. The analysis employs process documentation of water< transfer and wastewater negotiations through interviews, review of primary documents, and field observations. Hermosillo's recourse to negotiated agreements and quasi-market transactions, led by an emerging group of public sector innovators, advances understanding of water policy in Mexico by moving beyond prevailing concerns with the water reform's neoliberal underpinnings to exploration of rapidly changing urban-centered experimentation. We conclude that evolving urban-rural power disparities and water resource landscapes of urban growth will drive continued expansion of hydraulic reach in water-scarce regions globally.




Udal Center

University of Arizona | 803 E. First St., Tucson AZ 85719 USA | Telephone: (520) 626-4393 | Christopher Scott