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2017 Commons Workshop: Enhancing Water Governance and Policy will be held on 14th and 15th October 2017 at School of Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. This workshop is organized by the China Institute for Rural Studies at Tsinghua University in collaboration with the Centre for Water Resources Research at Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Water Policy, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, the Third World Centre for Water Management, the International Association for the Study of the Commons, and the International Journal of the Commons, and the International Journal of Water Resources Development.

The study of the commons is a relatively new research field in China. This field comprises of an interdisciplinary domain with a theoretical and an applied focus on advancing understanding, the improvement of commons governance and management, and the crafting of sustainable solutions for community-based natural resources or any other form of shared resources.

The Commons Workshop is a knowledge platform that aims to bring together researchers, practitioners and policymakers from different disciplines and sectors in order to discuss, understand, appreciate and promote the study of commons in China as well as in the rest of the world. This 2017 Commons Workshop focuses on water governance and policy. As one of the typical commons, water is of special significance to China, whether in ancient or modern times. Entering into the new century, the water governance and policy in China is facing new challenges due to rapid economic growth, increasing urbanization, escalating water demands and land use, rampant air, water and soil pollution, and steadily growing demand of an expanding affluent and educated middle class for a better standard of living and quality of life.

The 2017 Commons Workshop seeks to explore sustainable and innovative water governing approaches and instruments which can be effectively used in countries like China. Challenges in water governance and related policy development are expected to be overcome by understanding how to enhance water governance under changing socioeconomic circumstances, people’s rising aspirations, how governing instruments and associated water policies respond to changes in local and regional contexts, and how to achieve sustainable human and water development in the coming decades.  

We welcome papers and abstracts in English with a focus on water governance, innovation and transition of water policy and management in contemporary and rapidly changing China as well as in other developing countries. Please submit a 200- to 300-word extended abstract in English by 16th June 2017. This should include your full name, affiliation, status (e.g. professor, graduate student, public servant, practitioner), mailing address, email address and telephone number.

Call for paper

Important date

Abstract submission deadline

Submission Topics

Abstracts can be submitted on any aspect of water governance, including:

  • Self-governance and collective action in water governance;

  • Design principles governing the water commons;

  • Water or irrigation Social-Ecological System;

  • Decentralized reform of water sector;

  • Water pricing and incentive mechanism;

  • Water rights and water market;

  • Water User Associations;

  • Water policies to address climate change and fluctuations;

  • Trans-regional collaborative water management;

  • Public administration and water governance;

  • Policy process in water governance; and

  • Legal, regulatory and institutional aspects.

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Important Date
  • Conference Date

    Oct 14



    Oct 15


  • Jun 16 2017

    Abstract Submission Deadline

  • Oct 15 2017

    Registration deadline