Book Chapter
Analysis and Management of Watersheds

The concept of ‘watershed management’ combines two things, namely managing the physical aspects of water resources and managing the socio-economic systems. The problem of watershed management has mixed impacts, mixed institutional jurisdictions, and mixed signals as to what are benefits and costs. An integrated and multi-disciplinary approach is needed. Understanding the sociology of watersheds is crucial because in many cases, groups and communities inhabiting the upper watersheds tend to be both physically and politically remote, and tend to be outside the national mainstream. Increased public participation is essential, but more needs to be done to focus on the role of mountain communities. Economic analysis of watersheds focuses on the measurement and monetary valuation of various activities of interest within the watershed. The chapter uses case studies and examples to illustrate these issues and discusses some policy implications.