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  • 1.
    Balfors, Berit
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Management and Assessment.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    SINGH, NANDITA
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Koku, John
    Dept. of Geography & Environment, University of Ghana.
    Contamination of water resources in Takwa mining area of Ghana: Linking technical, social-economic and gender dimensions2007Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Ghana is Africa’s second largest producer of gold with gold deposits in western part of the country. There are seven large-scale mines and 168 small-scale mining concessions valid in the region. Wassa West District is an important mining area, with Tarkwa as administrative capital. In recent years, the area has been exposed to lead, cadmium, arsenic, mercury and cyanide. Both small and large-scale mining industries have reportedly contaminated rivers, streams, dug wells and boreholes with heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, arsenic, mercury and cyanide. There has been significant adverse impact upon health, economy, and social life that may be felt differently by women and men, raising the question of sustainable access to safe water as a millennium development goal (MDG) in the area.

    A multi-disciplinary approach was adopted in the project with distinct work components on the technical as well as on social, gender and policy aspects. It also aimed to suggest integrated strategies to address the problem so as to ensure achievement of the MDGs. Based upon a field study in 37 local communities coupled with water and sediment analysis from the area, the research indicated the existence of not only higher levels of metal contaminants in local water resources in Tarkwa area, particularlymanganese and iron, but also arsenic and aluminium in some wells. However, water resources, particularly groundwater is currently safe for human consumption but the spillages of cyanide and other effluents into surface streams have health and ecological implications. Levels of mercury in stream sediments are high with a clear risk of methylation of the mercury and transfer in the food chain via fish to humans.

    Regarding the impact of mining, it was found that for women who are the primary domestic water managers, contamination of local water sources has forced them to fetch water from greater distances, and livelihoods are hampered due to the fish loss through cyanide spillages in streams. Another finding was the lack of trust and rising water conflicts between mining authorities and the local communities. Regarding the policy aspects underlying the problem, it was found that there is a lack of coordination between the 3 policy areas, namely, rural water supply, mining, and environmental impact assessment (EIA) and environmental protection to the detriment of women as water users and domestic water managers. While impact of mining is increasingly seen as an issue of human rights violation, little is being done to strengthen participatory approaches especially involving women in rural water supply programs. The detailed analysis of the EIA regulations reveals that most mining have not undertaken any comprehensive EIA guiding their operations.

    A number of recommendations have emerged from the integrated perspective attempted to be developed through this research. These include a need for further in-depth explorations on the situation of contamination in groundwater and surface waters as well as stream sediments in the area; the need to resolve the situations of water conflicts between the local communities and the mining authorities by promoting greater public participation; and the need to minimize the gaps between the three related policy frameworks. Also, there is a necessity to strengthen environmental compliance on part of the mining companies so as to uphold the quality of water resources in the area.

  • 2.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Sracek, Ondra
    Eldvall, Björn
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Asklund, Ragnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Barmen, Gerhard
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Koku, John
    Gustafsson, Jan-Erik
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Balfors, Berit Brokking
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Management and Assessment.
    Hydrogeochemical study on the contamination of water resources in a part of Tarkwa mining area, Western Ghana2012In: Journal of African Earth Sciences, ISSN 1464-343X, Vol. 66-67, p. 72-84Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this study was to investigate the groundwater chemistry with special concern to metal pollution in selected communities in the Wassa West district, Ghana. In this mining area, 40 ground water samples, mainly from drilled wells, were collected. The groundwaters have generally from neutral to acidic pH values and their Eh values indicate oxidising conditions. The dominating ions are calcium, sodium, and bicarbonate. The metal concentrations in the study area are generally lower than those typically found in mining regions. Only 17 wells show metal concentrations exceeding WHO guidelines for at least one metal. The main contaminants are manganese and iron, but arsenic and aluminium also exceed the guidelines in some wells probably affected by acid mine drainage (AMD). Metal concentrations in the groundwater seem to be controlled by the adsorption processes. Hydrogeochemical modelling indicates supersaturation of groundwater with respect to several mineral phases including iron-hydroxides/oxides, suggesting that adsorption on these minerals may control heavy metal and arsenic concentrations in groundwater. The area is hilly, with many groundwater flow divides that result in several local flow systems. The aquifers therefore are not strongly affected by weathering of minerals due to short groundwater residence times and intense flushing. The local character of groundwater flow systems also prevents a strong impact of acid mine drainage on groundwater systems in a regional scale.

  • 3.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Climate Change And Water Stress: Gendered Impact And Adaptation In The Hills Of North-Eastern India2011Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    India is projected to face severe water challenges as a result of climate change. With a large population tied closely to natural resources, this will undermine human development in several ways. The hills in north-eastern India, representing one of the least developed regions of the country, have already been exposed to climate change impacts. Once known to be one of the wettest places of the world, access to water for domestic as well as productive uses is becoming increasingly difficult.

    Gendered impact of these problems is evident as women and children (notably girls) face increasing difficulties in procuring water for domestic use. While earlier enough water used to be available in the vicinity of the village settlement for a greater part of the year, now the situation stands reversed, thereby enhancing their vulnerability in water-procuring tasks, with serious negative implications for their health and economic well-being and development, besides hindering children’s education.

    A number of innovative local strategies are being adopted to address these challenges on the basis of traditional knowledge and technology. For example, women and children venture further and further down the hillslopes in search of new water sources. Another example is community tanks for storing rainwater to be used in the dry season. Roof-top rainwater harvesting is yet another traditionally designed strategy. However given the constraints of context and resources, only some of these innovative strategies turn out to be sustainable that can really help women adapt to the increasing water stress. There is a need to think more deeply on these local options & support women (as well as men) in developing more sustainable adaptive strategies based on their traditional knowledge & experiences. The proposed presentation will discuss the empirical findings of an in-depth field-based participatory research conducted in the region, which will help enhance knowledge and understanding for guiding policy on the issue in the context of hilly and mountainous regions.

  • 4.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Equitable access to water: Opportunities and constraints in urban India2011In: Abstract Volume, The World Water Week in Stockholm, 2011: Responding to Global Changes - Water in an Urbanising World, Stockholm: Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) , 2011Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 5.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Equitable gender participation in local water governance: An insight into institutional paradoxes2008In: Water resources management, ISSN 0920-4741, E-ISSN 1573-1650, Vol. 22, no 7, p. 925-942Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The participation of local stakeholders in governance of water resources is regarded as inalienable for ensuring efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability. To enhance gender balance in the water governance process, institutions are being designed and executed globally to elicit enhanced participation of women. This paper contends that in the context of local communities, the new institutional framework is divorced from the traditional social institutions that in turn operationalize their resource management systems. Based upon empirical evidence from rural Indian setting, the paper deciphers the paradoxes between the two sets of institutional paradigms and illustrates how these paradoxes at the 'interface' between the local community context and the development strategy lead to problems with effective women's participation. On the basis of the findings, it argues that the institutional paradigm for achieving equitable gender participation in local water governance does not represent a truly 'bottom-up' approach. It further raises the concern that if the institutional paradigm for participation is contradictory to local institutions, then how can the objectives of participation founded thereupon be seen as achievable? The paper proposes the need to design participatory paradigms that are more realistically rooted in community-based institutional frameworks so as to enhance effectiveness of the endeavors.

  • 6.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Gender concern in water resources management: Rethinking gender initiatives in India2004Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Gender concern in water resources management is globally seen as instrumental in achieving greater efficiency, effectiveness and equity in the sector. Working within the global framework, in recent years, the state in India has drafted and designed gender-based initiatives in the sector at policy as well as program levels. Most of these concern the water users in local communities, primarily the women. Beginning with a concern for women as ‘beneficiaries’, the state’s initiatives have been expanded to enhance the scope of their participation in the sector as ‘actors’. This is reflected in the initial designing of water supply programs aiming at unburdening women in the task of water procurement, to be succeeded by formulation of new interventions promoting their participation in decision-making within domestic as well as irrigation water management arenas. The paper seeks to analyse the effectiveness of these gender-based initiatives in India, looking for the situational factors influencing the achievement of the underlying goals. It argues that the localised social and cultural context interplay in the process of effective implementation of the interventions. The conceptualisation of the gender, gender needs, gender roles and relationships with respect to water resources management within the local context may not necessarily match the constructions underlying the gender initiatives designed and promoted by the state. Consequently, the paper argues for the need to rethink the content and strategy of these initiatives so that the aspirations of the local community and its members are fulfilled in a way that buffers the state’s interests and efforts.

  • 7.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Indigenous water management systems: Interpreting symbolic dimensions in common property resource regimes2006In: Society & Natural Resources, ISSN 0894-1920, E-ISSN 1521-0723, Vol. 19, no 4, p. 357-366Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water is a natural resource subject to management in many small-scale societies as common property. A dominant approach to understanding the sustainability of such common property resource (CPR) management regimes is the rational action model, which assumes that their successful governance is achieved through collective action based on a rationally constructed set of working rules. By presenting a holistic study of indigenous water management system in small-scale community setting in India, this article argues that the relationship between water resources and society extends beyond a materialistic mundane relationship, to incorporate a ''symbolic'' orientation. It concludes that rooted in the cosmology of the society, the indigenous water management system represents a mechanism to reinforce the symbolic constructions and also to fulfill water-related needs that cut across material and nonmaterial realms. The outcomes of the article enhance the understanding of management of CPRs, adding an alternate perspective concerning beliefs and values associated with such resources.

  • 8.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Managing Water pollution in Urban India: Problems and prospects2010In: Proceedings of The Stockholm World Water Week, September 2010 / [ed] Jakob Ericsson and Ingrid Stangberg, Stockholm: Stockholm International Water Institute, SIWI , 2010, p. 414-415Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 9.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Role of Socio-Cultural Context in Realization of the Right to Water in India2008Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 10.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Resources Engineering.
    Socio-cultural norms, human rights and access to water and sanitation2012In: The Right to Water: Theory, Practice & Prospects / [ed] Malcolm Langford & Anna Russell, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The human right to water and sanitation has been most commonly approached from the perspective of the machinery and mechanisms for its implementation. Perhaps the underlying assumption is that once action for implementation is undertaken, access to water and sanitation and hence realization of the right will be spontaneously achieved. Little attention has been drawn to the processes at the micro-level where such action for implementing the right takes place. This paper aims to propose a framework for understanding the micro-level processes at the ‘interface’ where the duty-bearing agents implementing action come face-to-face with the right-holders in the community who interpret the action within the context of their socio-cultural norms. This framework proposes that the actions for implementation are influenced by factors located in the ‘implementation context’ that is external to the right-holders’ community, while actual ‘realization’ of the right is ultimately influenced by factors situated in their ‘socio-cultural context’. The two contexts can in turn be understood as constituted of distinct ‘norm-triads’ comprising knowledge, will, and systemic conditions and possibilities. The framework is validated through an inter-disciplinary study in India where the respective norm-triads have been analysed.

  • 11.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Technology, Society and Bureaucracy in India: A case study of women and water2005Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water supply programs are seen as instrumental in achieving development by fulfilling the goal of ‘safe’ water for all. One of the principal target groups in these programs is women, whose development is believed to be promoted through improved water facilities offering them greater convenience, better health and enhanced socio-economic opportunities. These programs are largely built upon 3 essential aspects, namely, technology, people and institutions. Of these, the responsibilities of designing technologies for supplying water, creating institutional frameworks for their execution and implementing the program at the people’s end for their benefit lie with the bureaucracy. The people are generally taken to represent the beneficiaries who will ‘develop’ as a result of the program. However, women who are targeted in these programs actually perform the role of domestic water managers within the context of their communities where the role and its performance are built upon the specific socio-cultural intricacies. The latter lie embedded in aspects such as cultural beliefs and values regarding water and water needs that influence their choice of technology and social dynamics that determine their access to water sources.

    The construct of water supply programs appears to reflect insensitivity on part of the bureaucracy about these contextual realities and their relevance for program outputs, reflected in inappropriate technology and inadequate program designs. These weaknesses further find expression in the process of implementation of the programs at the ‘cutting edge’, finally affecting their effectiveness and efficiency. Through a study in rural India, this paper seeks to understand how the socio-cultural intricacies in local communities influence water supply programs and what is their impact on the effectiveness of these programs. It will further explore how these intricacies can be incorporated in program design and implementation processes so as to enhance their effectiveness. The findings will offer important lessons for bureaucracies that design and implement the ‘hardware’ and ‘software’ components in water supply programs, urging them to build these upon processes that facilitate incorporation of the perspective of the women and their communities whose development is ultimately to be addressed.

  • 12.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    The changing role of women in water management: Myths and realities2006In: Wagadu: a Journal of Transnational Women's & Gender Studies, ISSN 2150-2226, E-ISSN 1545-6196, Vol. Spring, p. 94-113Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Women and water are linked in several ways, an important pragmatic linkage being their role in water management. Several continuous efforts at positively transforming this role have been made during the last three decades, ranging from their improved role as domestic water managers to eliciting their greater participation in water management initiatives at community level. Studies tend to indicate that the anticipated ends of such exercises are universally achievable, in isolation of the prevailing social and cultural contexts where the women are placed. This paper seeks to unfold the realities underlying the universalistic claims regarding a transformed role for women in water management. Considering the importance of 'context' in the construction of gender ideologies and relations, through a micro-level study in the rural Indian context, this paper argues that the transformation of women's role in water management cannot be taken as a universal reality. The findings suggest that the existing role can be effectively modified only when interventions are built upon realistic, workable strategies that are meaningful and acceptable to the women and their communities.

  • 13.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    The Role of Water Quality for Human Health2010Conference paper (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
  • 14.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Total sanitation efforts in India: Problems and prospects2008In: Abstract Volume, World Water Week in Stockholm, August 17–23, 2008: Progress and Prospects on Water:For a Clean and Healthy Worldwith Special Focus on Sanitation, Stockholm: Stockholm International Water Institute, SIWI , 2008, p. 331-332Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 15.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, Superseded Departments, Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Traditional water management practices and their implications in contemporary policy context2004In: Proceedings of the Xth International Symposium on Society and Resource Management, Colorado, USA, June, 2004, University of Minnesota , 2004Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent times, there has been much concern with designing of new ‘management’ regimes for efficient, effective and sustainable use of water as a natural resource basic to life. The common pool resource (CPR) theory provides a valid conceptual paradigm within which issues related to management of water in local communities may be approached and interpreted. It is recognized that the use of CPRs have been traditionally regulated by local communities without recourse to any centralized coercion. This presentation will seek to understand how water is traditionally managed as a CPR and how can the traditional water management practices be understood within the framework of the existent CPR theory. It will also attempt to explore the implications of the findings concerning traditional water management practices with respect to the new co-management regimes proposed within the contemporary water policy context. The presentation will argue that traditional water management regimes may be interpreted as conforming to the design principles underlying CPR management systems, though not necessarily ‘visible’ as formalized structural forms with independent existence. Further, these systems need to be seen as comprising human and non-human elements, the latter being further constituted in ‘ideational’ and ‘operational’ dimensions. Finally, discussing on the implications of the traditional water management systems within the contemporary policy context, the presentation will argue upon the need to rethink the new water management strategies based upon the concept of co-management by replacing exogenously developed universal designs by ones that are built upon existing traditional templates.

  • 16.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Translating human right to water and sanitation into reality: a practical framework for analysis2013In: Water Policy, ISSN 1366-7017, E-ISSN 1996-9759, Vol. 15, no 6, p. 943-960Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The human right to water and sanitation has been most commonly approached from the perspective of legal machinery and mechanisms for its implementation. Perhaps an underlying assumption among human rights practitioners is that once action for implementing the right is undertaken, its realization will be achieved. Often ignored are factors and processes at the micro-level where action for implementing the right actually takes place. This paper aims to propose a practical framework for analyzing this context that influences the action undertaken for realizing the right. The framework derives from an empirical study in India and is based upon an understanding of the micro-level processes at the 'interface' where the duty-bearing agents implementing action come face-to-face with the right-holders in the community. Both are situated in their own local contexts - the 'implementation' and the 'socio-cultural' contexts respectively. The two contexts can in turn be understood as constituted of distinct 'norm-triads' and the interactions between these ultimately lead to 'realization' or 'non-realization' of the right. The paper further contends that in order to translate the human right to water and sanitation into reality, it is necessary to identify the gaps and contradictions between the two contexts and address these appropriately and adequately.

  • 17.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Water management traditions in rural India: Valuing the unvalued2004Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Achieving effective and efficient management of water as the key to human survival and development has emerged as an urgent global concern. The realization of the limited availability of water in space and time under conditions of ever-increasing pressures has caused designing of ‘modern’ water management initiatives that are globally manufactured but implementable in local communities, India being no exception. It is perhaps universally assumed that water management, as an integrated system based upon local knowledge & practices, is either ‘non-existent’ or ‘irrational’, ‘narrowly pragmatic’ and ‘in the process of disappearance’. If water is a basic resource necessary for sustaining all human activities, its provision in the desired quantity and quality and at the right time and place through a workable local water management system must be regarded as an omnipresent  phenomenon.

    How is water management traditionally organized in rural Indian localities so that the community’s needs are met through generations? What implications do such systems based in local situated knowledge & practices hold for the global water management context? The paper seeks answers to these questions through an ethnographic study in rural India. It concludes that traditional water management system in rural Indian localities is pragmatic, rational and functional even in contemporary times. As found in central and central-eastern parts of the country, the system may be resolved into human and non-human components, the latter further lying within two different analytical domains, namely, the ‘ideational’ and the ‘operational’. Traditional knowledge informs each of these domains that is translated as practice in day-to-day life. The paper argues that the study of such systems is important not only for the sake of enhancing the understanding of traditional resource management  systems as situated knowledge systems and situated action locales, but also for appreciating their practical value in designing of more workable, socio-culturally viable, community-based solutions to the resource management problems encountered in recent times.

  • 18.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Water management traditions in rural India: Valuing the unvalued2006In: Rural Transformation: Socio-economic Issues / [ed] H. Bhargava and D. Kumar, Hyderabad: Icfai University Press, 2006, p. 111-124Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 19.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Women and the Water Framework Directive in North Sweden2006In: Women and Natural Resource Management in the Rural North: Arctic Council Sustainable Development Working Group 2004-2006 / [ed] Sloan, L, Norfold: Forlaget Nora , 2006, p. 150-154Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 20.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Women, Society and Water Technologies: Lessons for Bureaucracy2006In: Gender, Technology and Development, ISSN 0971-8524, E-ISSN 0973-0656, Vol. 10, no 3, p. 341-360Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water technologies are increasingly regarded as pivotal to the process of societal development. One arena of importance is the delivery of water to society through  comprehensive water supply programs that aim at ensuring ‘safe’ water for all. The principal target group in these programs is women, whose development is believed to be promoted through improved water facilities offering them greater convenience, better health and  enhanced socio-economic opportunities. These programs can be seen as having three essential aspects, namely technology, people and institutions. Of these, the responsibilities of designing technologies for supplying water, creating institutional frameworks for their execution and implementing the program at the people’s end for their benefit all lie with development bureaucracies. But the extent to which these bureaucracies can be sensitive to the socio-cultural contexts of the communities and the women for whom the program interventions are designed and implemented remains problematic. This article explores the gender dimensions of the socio-cultural context of water and how this may play a role in the adoption and management of improved water technologies. A perspective on the lessons for planning bureaucracies is offered to make the concerned technologies more efficient, effective and sustainable.

  • 21.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Women-centric issues in water resources management in rural India2008In: Advances in Water Quality & Management / [ed] Sudhakar M. Rao, Monto Mani & N. H. Ravindranath, Chennai: Research Publishing Services, 2008Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 22.
    Singh, Nandita
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Women’s participation in local water governance: Understanding institutional contradictions2006In: Gender, Technology and Development, ISSN 0971-8524, E-ISSN 0973-0656, Vol. 10, no 1, p. 61-76Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The participation of women in local water governance is currently envisaged as necessary for achieving sustainable management of water resources. Towards this end, institutions are being created in many developing countries enabling the participation of local people in the use and management of resources. How effective is the participation of women as  makers and shapers within local water governance institutions—and how does their participation translate into benefits for their communities? How realistic is this participatory strategy in the traditional rural contexts of the developing world? Based on empirical evidence from rural India, where women do not constitute a homogenous group, this article seeks to explore how social and power differences among them thwart the beneficial effects of water governance in communities. The findings underscore the need to develop a holistic understanding of the institutional factors that differentiate among women and the implications of these on mechanisms of water governance put in place at the local level.

  • 23.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Gustafsson, Jan Erik
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Gender and water management: Some policy reflections2006In: Water Policy, ISSN 1366-7017, E-ISSN 1996-9759, Vol. 8, no 2, p. 183-200Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The importance of gender concern in water sector is paramount, being seen as the harbinger of greater efficiency and effectiveness as well as equity. Consequently, there has been a continuing trend of designing water management policies with emphasis ranging from promoting participation of women in management of water projects in particular to supporting “gender-balanced” development of the water sector in general. How effective have these policies been in addressing such basic concerns? What are the local water users’ perceptions about effectiveness of the policies in addressing their realistic gendered needs and priorities? While “women” have received much attention, how well does the gender concern in the policies integrate “men”? Do “effectiveness” and “equity” as underlying policy goals reflect the water users’ perceptions as well? The paper attempts to evaluate the existing policies within the context of local communities where these are operational and proposes “facilitation of gender role performance” as a suitable policy alternative.

  • 24.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, Superseded Departments, Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, Superseded Departments, Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, Superseded Departments, Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Gustafsson, Jan-Erik
    KTH, Superseded Departments, Land and Water Resources Engineering. KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Women and modern domestic water supply systems: Need for a holistic perspective2004In: Water resources management, ISSN 0920-4741, E-ISSN 1573-1650, Vol. 18, no 3, p. 237-248Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    As domestic water managers, the strategic need of women has been identified as having access to domestic water sources that are convenient, reliable and located close to home. The need has been addressed through installation of low cost improved water supply systems in different parts of the developing world. While the need of women as domestic water managers has been globally articulated and addressed, perhaps adequate attention has not been drawn to the fact that this role is actually performed within the context of local communities where domestic water management activities are built upon the users' perceived needs to be fulfilled through culturally appropriate means. How do cultural intricacies in local communities influence the water fetching behaviour of women? What is the impact of such factors on the adoption and utilization of modern domestic water supply systems? The paper explores the implications of local cultural realities for the effectiveness of handpump as a modern domestic water supply system arguing that the locally perceived water needs of women are holistic and fail to be adequately addressed through the new source. Consequently, it has been admitted only as an 'add on' source, thereby hindering achievement of the basic objective of bringing women greater comfort, better health and socio-economic empowerment.

  • 25.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Jacks, G.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Women and community water supply programmes: An analysis from a socio-cultural perspective2005In: Natural resources forum (Print), ISSN 0165-0203, E-ISSN 1477-8947, Vol. 29, no 3, p. 213-223Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Community water supply programmes are seen as instrumental in achieving the goal of 'safe' water for all. Women, a principal target group of these programmes, are to be benefited with greater convenience, enhanced socio-cultural opportunities and better health for themselves and their families, provided through improved water facilities. Water supply programmes largely consist of three essential components, namely: technology, people and institutions. Although such programmes are intended to benefit women members of local communities, scant attention is paid to the impacts of the socio-cultural context of the community on these programmes. This article explores the influence of social and cultural intricacies on the implementation of community water supply programmes, and assesses their effectiveness. The article offers important lessons for the design and implementation of this type of programme. It concludes that the local sociocultural context sets the stage for programme implementation, being a dynamic factor that determines actual access to water sources, more so than mere physical availability, which is often used as a criterion for programme performance. The article stresses the urgent need to integrate socio-cultural factors as a fourth dimension in designing community water supply programmes, and suggests practical measures for enhancing the effectiveness of such programmes.

  • 26.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Arsenic-safe water for local communities in West Bengal, India: A technological issue or a management challenge?2006Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years, the arsenic menace has come to threaten the lives of several millions in a number of states in India. Of these, the earliest to be reported and perhaps the worst to be affected are the populace living in the state of West Bengal. Until the middle of the 90s, the concern was with developing appropriate ‘hardware’ that can supply arsenic-safe water to the affected communities. By the second half of the 90s, a number of technological options were developed, promising to supply water containing arsenic well below the permissible limit set by the WHO. These various technologies can be conveniently clubbed under the rubric ‘arsenic removal plants’ (ARPs). Other alternatives lately promoted as safe water sources include deep tubewells, treated surface water supply through pipelines and rainwater harvesting. While each of these alternatives has its own strengths and weaknesses within the technological framework, this presentation argues that a common challenge facing them and the users is their management. While the government had commissioned evaluative studies of the ARP technologies quite early, an understanding of the management issues underlying their sustainability and adoption is yet to be developed.

    Based on detailed first hand observations made in a sample of 45 villages in the state, the presentation outlines the major ‘software’ issues confronting the adoption, access, maintenance and sustainability of the different technology options introduced in the local communities of West Bengal for supplying arsenic-safe water. It argued that neglect of the software dimension of the problem has resulted in inadequate attention to interventions that should have otherwise constituted critical components in the arsenic mitigation programmes designed and executed by different agencies in the state – namely, government, non-governmental organizations and international development agencies. The core of the software dimension is identified as lying in the notion of real and effective ‘community participation’.

  • 27.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Ensuring arsenic-safe water supply in local communities: Emergent concerns in West Bengal, India2008In: Groundwater for sustainable Development: Problems, Perspectives and Challenges / [ed] Bhattacharya, P. et al., London: Taylor & Francis , 2008, p. 357-364Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 28.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Managing arsenic-safe water supply options in West Bengal, India: Problems and prospects from gender perspective2006Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    While about a decade ago, developing appropriate hardware for mitigating the arsenic menace in West Bengal was the prime concern, today, safe water supply options almost abound in the affected local communities. The government has drafted a detailed program for mitigating the problem and international development agencies are actively supporting the various available options. However, the plight of the people does not seem to have been contained.

    It needs to be increasingly realized that management of the available safe water supply technologies is the critical issue that will determine effectiveness as well as sustainability of the alternatives in the long run. So far, either centrality of the issue has been evaded or else the government has taken over the burden in relation to its own interventions. The community has been largely kept at bay or else involved in a piecemeal approach, without realizing that linkages between technology and society can be complex and intricate and that without effective participation of the users in planning and implementation, mere installation of technologies in the community cannot deliver the goods. The complexity of the linkages is furthered by the gender-based differences between women and men as water users. It is also aggravated by the level and nature of the technology, the major categories being community-level arsenic removal plants, deep tubewells, and treated surface water pipelines on the one hand and domestic water filters on the other. Community level rainwater harvesting is being developed as an additional alternative.

    Based on an ethnographic study conducted in the state, this presentation aims at identifying the problems concerning management of the various kinds of safe water supply technologies introduced in the affected villages in West Bengal. The problems are first analyzed from gender perspective and then suggestions made for an appropriate gender-based approach to ensure effective community participation in the process of managing these alternatives. The recommendations aim at developing a model, which can help promote effectiveness and sustainability of technological options available for arsenic mitigation in local communities.

  • 29.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Geochemistry and Ecotechnology.
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Women and community water supply programs: An analysis from socio-cultural perspective2005In: Water resouces Journal ST/ESCAP/SER.C, no 217, p. 31-49Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 30.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).
    Jacks, Gunnar
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).
    Bhattacharya, Prosun
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630).
    Women and Water: Encountering the challenges of water resource management in rural India from gender perspective2009Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Women are universally recognized as domestic water managers, concerned with both domestic water provision and use. This multi-facetted role of women, particularly in the rural setting, has been a cause of significant global concern, seen as constrained by factors like inaccessibility and non-reliability of water sources, arising primarily from problems with water quantity and quality. Assuming the universality of these constraints, the strategic water related need of women has been identified as having access to convenient, reliable and safe water sources located close to home. Such facilities are expected to contribute to their well-being and development through greater convenience, better health and enhanced socio-economic opportunities. The needs of rural women with respect to water have also been recognized in India through rural water supply programs. 88.4% rural habitations in India are fully covered with improved low-cost water supply sources that the users can help build and maintain themselves. For greater success and sustainability of the improved water sources, there has also been an emphasis on women's participation in operation and maintenance in particular and water management in general. However, observations in the so-called ‗covered' areas indicate that irrespective of the problem of water quality or quantity and the question of women's participation, inability on part of women to meet holistic and specific water needs of their families continues to persist, with continued dependence of many of them on traditional water sources that are distant and may not necessarily be safe. This research project was undertaken to decipher the realities underlying this paradox. Based upon a primary long-term field-based study following an interdisciplinary approach that blended socio-cultural dimensions with technical aspects of the problem, the research shows that the needs, interests & concerns of rural women with respect to improved water sources are diversified and so also their interest in participation and that all these are rooted in a complex web of 3 sets of micro-level factors embedded in the local socio-cultural matrix:

    (i) Cultural beliefs, values & norms defining standards of water quality that ultimately influence pattern of use of the new safe sources for the designated purpose of drinking & cooking; (ii) Social organizational principles, primarily caste, class, religion, as intersecting with gender, age & generation that influence the real access to improved water sources; and (iii) Divergence of the new technology from the traditional water technology & knowledge system that may thwart women's involvement in operation & maintenance, hence adversely affecting sustainability of the improved water sources - especially true in areas affected by high levels of arsenic and fluoride in drinking water where complex technologies for mitigation have been introduced. Also the new strategies introduced for promoting women's participation do not match the traditional gender norms. It was found that the development bureaucracies that design water supply programs are concerned with only the macro-level problems and their technological solutions, assuming that once provided, women will spontaneously adopt the improved sources and also participate actively in their upkeep and maintenance. They remain oblivious of the micro-level factors identified above that ultimately influence the use, access and sustainable management of water supply technologies, hence thwarting the benefits planned for women as water users and managers. The research recommends that water supply programs be re-conceptualized beyond a construct of mere technology, people (focus on women) and institutions. If real benefits are to be effectively delivered to the women for whom these are created, there is a need to integrate the socio-cultural context of implementation as the fourth aspect within the program design. Integration of this aspect will imply requisite changes in the program contents and strategies so as to make it more pragmatic, acceptable, workable and effective when introduced in local communities.

  • 31.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Koku, John
    Department of Geography and Resource Development, University of Ghana, Legon-Accra, Ghana.
    Mining Policy, Water Conflicts and Corporate Social Responsibility in Ghana: Perspectives from the Wassa West District2005Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Using evidence from content analysis of secondary data in combination with findings from an ongoing study on mining and contamination of water resources in the Wassa West District, this paper highlights the links between mining policy, water conflicts and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in communities within the study district. Drawing mainly data from the review of cases of mining companies, the paper also examines activities undertaken by some mining companies as part of CSR in the host communities. Findings suggest that whereas there are general complaints concerning contamination of water bodies by mining activities in communities, there are contradictions between what the local residents perceive as risk and what the views held by mining companies and experts. Reactions to reported cases of pollution are therefore open to individual interpretations—subjective or otherwise. This is largely attributed to poor communication among stakeholders. Findings also do show that mining companies are involved in the discharge of CSR through the provision of potable water supply, social infrastructure, amongst others. What remains yet to establish is the level of engagement that will match the expectations of host communities as far as improvement in water quality is concerned. A model for effective information communication is therefore proposed towards building co-operation in mining related water-conflict mediation in the district.

  • 32.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Koku, John
    Department of Geography and Resource Development, University of Ghana, Legon-Accra.
    Balfors, Berit
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Environmental Management and Assessment.
    Resolving Water Conflicts in Mining Areas of Ghana Through Public Participation: A Communication Perspective2007In: Journal of Creative Communications, ISSN 0973-2586, Vol. 2, no 3, p. 361-382Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Mining as a sector is vital to a country's economic growth but the impact of the activities on environment can be an important cause of concern. In Wassa West district of Ghana, mining as an industry has been promoted in the recent past, but with significant impact on environmental aspects, especially water, leading to conflicts between the local communities and the mining companies. The practical theory of ‘Trinity of Voice’ (TOV) has been proposed for understanding the community-related intricacies underlying multi-stakeholder decision-making processes and proposing a futuristic course of action for effective public participation in the same. This article attempts to understand the causes underlying the mining-related water conflicts in Ghana using the TOV theory. Using this theory, the article proposes a practical framework for enhanced effective participation of members from local host communities that in turn can enable resolving the existing conflicts and preventing the same in future. 

  • 33.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Singh, Om Prakash
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Anthropology of Water: Perspectives from Traditional Water Management Regime in Rural India2009In: Man in India, ISSN 0025-1569, Vol. 89, no 1-2, p. 215-228Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water a natural resource, is characterized by multitudes of traits which are distinctively processed by diversified thoughts and beliefs orienting the behaviour-patterns of the people. The present paper highlights the integrated inter-relation between water as a natural sources and human societies. Water works as an essence in human existence and at the sametime it in seen that this particular element of the environment has been specifically moulded by the social-cultural patterns of the people in such a way that it takes the principal role in governing the peoples sacred and secular mode of life-situation. In the perspective of this view-point an attempt has been made here to study the traditional water management system that are still prevalent in Indian villages. This study is engaged to explore the water management pattern in the background of socio-cultural and ritualistic traditions in the caste-oriented villages in Bihar and Madhya Pradesh. Day to day water use by the people and the associated values, norms and taboos open up such a unique dimension which can best be illustrated and analysed through the domain of anthropology of water.

  • 34.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering.
    Singh, Om Prakash
    Climate change, water and gender: Impact and adaptation in North-Eastern Hills of India2015In: International Social Work, ISSN 0020-8728, E-ISSN 1461-7234, Vol. 58, no 3, p. 375-384Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water resources in India are projected to face severe climate-induced stress. In the North-Eastern Hill region, where lifestyles are closely connected to nature, this holds great implications for human development. While scientific knowledge regarding climate change and water is growing at global and regional scales, an equally diverse body of knowledge on the human dimensions of the same at local levels is weak. This article attempts to bridge this knowledge gap by presenting micro-level evidence on the gendered impact of increasing water stress and the innovative gendered local adaptive strategies in this region. It urges for the need to re-think on adaptation planning, basing it on local templates for greater sustainability.

  • 35.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Wickenberg, Per
    Dept. of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Åström, Karsten
    Dept. of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Hydén, Håkan
    Dept. of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Accessing water through a rights-based approach: problems and prospects regarding children2012In: Water Policy, ISSN 1366-7017, E-ISSN 1996-9759, Vol. 14, no 2, p. 298-318Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The right to water has been recently recognized as a fundamental human right by the United Nations, thereby clarifying its status as 'legally binding', making it 'justiciable' and enforceable. This development has been heralded as a key that holds great potential to change the lives of the billions who still lack access to clean water. Many of those deprived of enjoyment of the right are children, who constitute up to a third of the population in the developing world. What is the value added of the rights-based approach for access to water, especially for children? Would recognition of the right to water as legally binding deliver real benefits to children in improving their access to water? Does it really offer anything new that can help them realize their right to water more effectively? These questions will be explored in this paper using empirical evidence from India, where water has been legally interpreted as a fundamental right, and as a welfare state, where there has been consistent effort on part of the state to improve children's access to water.

  • 36.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering (moved 20130630), Water Management.
    Wickenberg, Per
    Dept. of sociology, Lund University, Lund.
    Åström, Karsten
    Dept. of sociology, Lund University, Lund.
    Hydén, Håkan
    Dept. of sociology, Lund University, Lund.
    Children’s right to water as a contested domain: Gendered reflections from India2008In: Development: Journal of the Society for International Development, ISSN 1011-6370, E-ISSN 1461-7072, Vol. 51, no 1, p. 102-107Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Nandita Singh and her colleagues look at children's right to water in India. They argue for the exercise of the right by children by analyzing the universal normative-legal framework and its difference to the local socio-culturally defined framework. They suggest that defining problems and designing actions only within the normative-legal framework can obscure understanding the critical realities at the right-holders' end. They suggest that interventions at various levels, such as through policy and targeted programmes, have at best provided an ‘enabling environment’, but the process of implementation of children's rights at the right-holders' end is to date an incomplete socio-cultural process.

  • 37.
    Singh, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering, Water Management.
    Wickenberg, Per
    Department of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Åström, Karsten
    Department of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Hydén, Håkan
    Department of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Meeting the Millennium Development Goals through the Human Right to Water: A gendered analysis in India from actor oriented perspective2008In: Meeting global challenges in research cooperation: Proceedings of a conferenceand workshop in Uppsala,May 27–29, 2008 / [ed] Ingrid Karlsson and Kristina Röing de Nowina, Uppsala: Uppsala universitet, 2008, p. 338-339Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    One of the targets of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is to halve the number of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water by 2015. It is believed that one of the ways to add impetus to the ongoing efforts is to explicitly recognize water as a ‘human right’, with a focus on ensuring the right of women and children, who are seen to be the worst sufferers from lack of sustainable water access. It is assumed that focus on the human right to water (HRW) would serve as a means to increase the pressure on governments and international agencies to translate the right into specific national and international legal obligations and responsibilities, thus paving the way for ensuring water access for all (UNESCO, 2006).

    This assumption has been examined by the authors within the scope of two different research projects supported by Sida-Sarec. Using an actor-oriented perspective that further made a distinction between ‘implementation’ and ‘realization’ of human rights, these projects attempt to understand how the globally formulated norms concerning water as a human right get translated into action at the local level. The first project looked at the HRW of women while the second one focuses on the right of children. The research is based upon empirical studies in different parts of India and refers to the right to water situation in areas affected by problems of water quality and quantity.

    The findings of the research indicate that realization of HRW essentially involves dynamics at the ‘third level’ of human rights implementation. This constitutes the interface between the community and the agency where action towards fulfillment of the right is ultimately unfolded. Following the rights-based approach to development, two kinds of actors were identified – the ‘rights-holders’ (women and children) and the ‘duty-bearers’ (government, NGOs, international development agencies). The contextual factors that influence the realization of the HRW of women and children as separate right-holder groups can be classified into two categories: first, the nature of human rights approach adopted by the agency (if any) and second, the socio-cultural factors in the community context that lead to re-construction of the right at the local level. The dynamics of interaction between the two sets of factors are complex and need to be understood as contextual realities. On the whole, the latter have been found to have significant influence on the equitable, effective and sustainable realization of the HRW (Singh, 2008, Singh et al., 2008).

    From the preliminary findings of the research, it can be concluded that mere legislative actions at international and national forums for implementing the HRW may not offer enough benefits towards ensuring progress towards the MDGs. There is a need to explore the dynamics at the ‘third’ level and consider how the learnings can be integrated into the global and state initiatives so as to promote water justice for women and children.

    REFERENCES:

    UNESCO (2006) Water: A shared Responsibility. World Water Development Report 2.

    Singh, N. (2008) Gender and water from human rights perspective: Role of context in translating international norms into local action. Rural Society, 18(3) (forthcoming).

    Singh, N., Wickenberg P., Åström K., Hydén, H. (2008) Children’s right to water as a contested domain: Gendered reflections from India. Development, 51(1):102-107.

  • 38.
    SINGH, Nandita
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
    Åström, Karsten
    Dept. of Sociology of Law, Lund University, Lund.
    Wickenberg, Per
    Hydén, Håkan
    Gender and water from a human rights perspective: The role of context in translating international norms into local action2008In: Rural Society, ISSN 1037-1656, Vol. 18, no 3, p. 185-193Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    An important area in the discourse on gender and water is water supply where women are seen as the key actors and beneficiaries. A human rights approach to development has been adopted with access to safe water explicitly recognized as a basic human right. This right places a legal obligation upon governments to translate the international norms into practice.

    But does explicitly acknowledging the human right to water make a practical difference in women's lives? Using an actor-oriented perspective, this paper analyzes how the international legal norms for realization of the right get reconstructed in local communities where women are the right holders. The empirical data for the analysis will be drawn from a first-hand qualitative study in rural India.

    The findings of the study show how the socio-cultural matrix provides the environment for implementing the right and determines its equitable and effective exercise by women.

     

1 - 38 of 38
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