Understanding Indian Institutional Networks and Participation in Water Management Adaptation to Climate Change
Monday, 15 December 2014
Adaptation to climate change for water management involves complex interactions between different actors and sectors. The need to understand the relationships between key stakeholder institutions (KSIs) is increasingly recognized. The complexity of water management in India has meant that enhancing adaptive capacity through improved inter-institutional networks remains a challenge for both government and non-governmental institutions. To analyse such complex inter-actions this study has used Social Network and Stakeholder Analysis tools to quantify the participation of, and interactions between, each KSI in the climate change adaptation and water discourse based on keyword analysis of their online presence. Using NodeXL, a Social Network Analysis tool, network diagrams have been used to evaluate the inter-relationships between these KSIs. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-five KSIs to identify the main barriers to adaptation and to triangulate the findings of the e-documents analysis. The analysis found that there is an inverse relationship between institutions’ reference to water and climate change in their web-documents. Most institutions emphasize mitigation rather than adaptation. Bureaucratic delays, poor coordination between the KSIs, unclear policies and systemic deficiencies are identified as key barriers to improving adaptive capacity within water management to climate change. However, the increasing attention being given to the perceived climate change impacts on the water sector and improving the inter-institutional networks are some of the opportunities for Indian water institutions. Although websites of Union Government Institutions seldom directly hyperlink to one another, they are linked through "bridging" websites which have the potential to act as brokers for enhancing adaptive capacity. The research has wider implications for analysis of complex inter-disciplinary and inter-institutional issues involving multi stakeholders.