Water Security: Principles, Perspectives and Practices, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Water Security

Principles, Perspectives and Practices, 1st Edition

Edited by Bruce Lankford, Karen Bakker, Mark Zeitoun, Declan Conway


376 pages | 45 B/W Illus.

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The purpose of this book is to present an overview of the latest research, policy, practitioner, academic and international thinking on water security—an issue that, like water governance a few years ago, has developed much policy awareness and momentum with a wide range of stakeholders. As a concept it is open to multiple interpretations, and the authors here set out the various approaches to the topic from different perspectives.

Key themes addressed include:

  • Water security as a foreign policy issue
  • The interconnected variables of water, food, and human security
  • Dimensions other than military and international relations concerns around water security
  • Water security theory and methods, tools and audits.

The book is loosely based on a masters level degree plus a short professional course on water security both given at the University of East Anglia, delivered by international authorities on their subjects. It should serve as an introductory textbook as well as be of value to professionals, NGOs, and policy-makers.


"Lankford, Bakker, Zeitoun and Conway have put together the best collection on the subject of water security I’ve ever read."Lawrence Susskind, MIT, in Anthem EnviroExperts Review

"One of the most useful models in the book is a web of sustainable water security including climate security, national security, water resources security, energy security and food security. One can readily appreciate that a dynamic systems approach is required to manage this kind of complexity, and indeed one of the contributions is specifically devoted to water security for ecosystems in terms of optimum allocation."David Lorimer, Network Review

Table of Contents

Part 1: Frameworks/Approaches to Water Security

1. Introduction: A Battle of Ideas for Water Security

Mark Zeitoun, Bruce Lankford, Karen Bakker and Declan Conway

2. The Web of Sustainable Water Security

Mark Zeitoun

3. The Water Security Paradox and International Law: Securitisation as an Obstacle to Achieving Water Security and the Role of Law in De-Securitising the World’s Most Precious Resource

Christina Leb and Patricia Wouters

Part 2: Perspectives and Principles

4. Debating the Concept of Water Security

Christina Cook and Karen Bakker

5. Water Security – The Multiform Water Scarcity Dimension

Malin Falkenmark

6. Securing Water in a Changing Climate

Declan Conway

7. The Role of Cities as Drivers of International Transboundary Water Management Processes

Anton Earle

8. The Water-Energy Nexus - Meeting Growing Demand in a Resource-Constrained World

Antony Froggatt

9. Water Security for Ecosystems, Ecosystems for Water Security

David Tickner and Mike Acreman

10. From Water Productivity to Water Security: A Paradigm Shift?

Floriane Clement

11. Transboundary Water Security: Reviewing the Importance of National Regulatory and Accountability Capacities in International Transboundary River Basins

Naho Mirumachi

Part 3: Water Security as Practice and Practice Debates

12. Easy as 1, 2, 3? Political and Technical Considerations for Designing Water Security Indicators

Nathaniel Mason

13. Water Security Risk and Response: The Logic and Limits of Economic Instruments

Dustin Garrick and Robert Hope

14. Corporate Water Stewardship: Exploring Private Sector Engagement in Water Security

Nick Hepworth and Stuart Orr

15. The Shotgun Marriage: Water Security, Cultural Politics and Forced Engagements between Official and Local Rights Frameworks

Rutgerd Boelens

16. Infrastructure Hydromentalities; Water Sharing, Water Control and Water (In)Security

Bruce Lankford

17. The Strategic Dimensions of Water: From National Security to Sustainable Security

Benjamin Zala

18. Dances with Wolves: Four Flood Security Frames

Jeroen Warner

19. Household Water Security and the Human Right to Water and Sanitation

Jonathan Chenoweth, Rosalind Malcolm, Steve Pedley and Thoko Kaime

Part 4: Conclusion

20. Food-Water Security: Beyond Water Resources and the Water Sector

Tony Allan

21. A Synthesis Chapter: The ‘Incodys’ Water Security Model

Bruce Lankford

About the Editors

Bruce Lankford is Professor of Water and Irrigation Policy in the School of International Development at the University of East Anglia, UK.

Karen Bakker is a Professor in Geography, Canada Research Chair in Political Ecology, and Director of the Program on Water Governance at the University of British Columbia, Canada.

Mark Zeitoun is a Reader in the School of International Development at the University of East Anglia, UK, and co-Director of the UEA Water Security Research Centre.

Declan Conway was, at the time of writing, Professor of Water Resources and Climate Change in the School of International Development at the University of East Anglia, UK.

About the Series

Earthscan Water Text

This series includes a wide range of inter-disciplinary approaches to the study of water and water resources, integrating perspectives from both social and natural sciences. It includes main and supplementary textbooks, and is aimed at the growing number of students taking advanced undergraduate and graduate level courses on water-related topics. Authors or editors of potential new titles should contact Hannah Ferguson, Editor (Hannah.Ferguson@tandf.co.uk).

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Industries / Service Industries
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Environmental Policy
SCIENCE / Earth Sciences / Hydrology
SCIENCE / Limnology
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Environmental / Water Supply