Normative structures, collaboration and conflict in irrigation; a case study of the Píllaro North Canal Irrigation System, Ecuadorian Highlands

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This paper analyzes conflict and collaboration and their relation to normative structures based on a case study of the history and external interventions of the Píllaro North Canal Irrigation System in the Ecuadorian Highlands. It does so by using Ostrom’s framework for analyzing the sustainability of socio-ecological systems together with an analysis of the normative structures that define the governance systems through which the interactions in irrigation systems are mediated. I argue that the external interventions by the state and NGOs imposed a new governance system that undermined the existing normative structures and related organizations, leading to internal conflicts. The case study suggests that a reformulation of irrigation policies and state intervention methodologies in user managed supra-community irrigation systems in the Andes could lead to higher levels of cooperation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-415
JournalInternational Journal of the Commons
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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