Around the world people are involved in negotiations about water. This is a book for practi-tioners committed to negotiations which lead to fair agreements about how societies sensibly use water. The book provides ideas, tools and inspiration.
The book recognizes that water negotiation is often complex – socially, economically and envi-ronmentally. Too often in East Asia, the part of world with which I am most familiar, this complexity is ignored or reduced to simplifications. To deal with complexity the writers suggest focused exami-nation of Rewards and opportunities, Rights of different actors, Risks of action and inaction, and Responsibilities of all involved parties.
Too often, negotiation over-emphasizes bargaining and competition embedded in zero-sum thinking. In welcome contrast, this book has an emphasis on constructive engagement and encour-aging space in negotiations for deliberation, hearing multiple perspectives and consensus-building. Institutionalizing, or normalizing, this approach would lead to more informed and respectful nego-tiations and, hopefully, wiser and fairer choices.