River basin management and the Water Framework Directive: in need of a little HELP?

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    Abstract

    This article examines the progress of the WFD, and particularly river basin planning, in the context of wider policy for water resources management, and in relation to the pre-existing initiative of the global UNESCO programme, Hydrology, Environment, Life and Policy (HELP). HELP is a stakeholder-focused crosscutting programme within the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme. It integrates cutting-edge science with effective policy and law, and addresses the `paradigm lock' of poor communication between different professionals, and between professionals and various stakeholder groups, in any particular river basin. Concepts of integrated water resources management, typified by the WFD in Europe, and related principles of good water governance, are also considered. The article looks at the Tweed river basin on the Scottish-English border, a candidate HELP basin where there is much good practice, and at proposals for more use of natural flood management techniques as a good example of the tensions between science, policy and law, and stakeholder interests. It concludes with some reflections on the future global role of the HELP programme, and its relationship to the WFD and similar instruments.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)150-156
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Water Law
    Volume19
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

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