28 June 2012

Speed blogging

  1. Fair warning: The Global Water Grab -- A Primer by Kay and Frank of the Transnational Institute is a disaster: biased and lacking analytical depth. Its first example of a grab -- Mulholland "taking" water for LA --- is wrong. It fails to acknowledge the central role of government (TNI's favorite entity in any debate is a benevolent government, and those are EVERYWHERE, right?) in enabling/supporting unsustainable water use and/or grabs from traditional communities. I don't know if I am a "neoliberal economist" (wtf is that?), but I am surely a thinking one, and this pamphlet lacks thinking.

  2. Speaking of grabs and the like, there are special issues on land/water grabs in Water Alternatives [open access] and land grabs and green grabs in the Journal of Peasant Studies [$]. Warning: put on your neo-Marxist hat before engaging with these discourses!

  3. In other publishing news, check out this article on using simulations as a tool for negotiating Delta uses (in the NL, but applicable elsewhere) and managing water in the face of climate change (this example from Florida) [both open access].

  4. An interesting article on water management -- and sometimes trading! -- in China.

  5. Black & Veatch's report -- Strategic Directions in the U.S. Water Utility Industry -- has some useful discussions from the industry POV.

H/Ts to PK and TM

4 comments:

  1. I think that the general understanding of the term neo-liberal economist is someone who thinks that markets are always best, always.

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  2. @Anon -- well that economist does not exist (markets for children?), so some people are beating a straw man with a dead horse on a broken camel's back.

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  3. Matt Heberger28 June, 2012 11:28

    C'mon David. You don't understand what the authors refer to as neoliberal? Googling "neoliberalism" yields 2.5 million hits!

    You don't believe that neoliberal economic policies have exerted increasing influence over water management in the last two decades (often for the better, occasionally for the worse)?

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  4. @Matt -- what's neoliberalism mean to you? According to wikipedia, "Neoliberalism is an ideology based on the advocacy of economic liberalizations, free trade, and open markets. Neoliberalism supports privatization of state-owned enterprises, deregulation of markets, and promotion of the private sector's role in society."

    That definition dates back to Adam Smith, and it's held by 90% of economists. Not even the Keynesians support it, and the Marxists live in fairy land...

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