Forum to be launched soon

Controversy allows the design and testing of projects and solutions that integrate a plurality of points of view, demands, and expectations. This ''taking into account,'' which takes place through negotiations and successive compromises, unleashes a process of learning (Callon et al. 2001).

The production of knowledge in the water sector has tended towards increased institutionalisation over the past 20 years. World Water Forums have been testament to a trend where international organisations, aid agencies and development banks have largely captured and shaped the agenda. The globalisation of the conferences and literature on water has had several positive consequences, including a better exchange of information and experience and the emergence of a common language to frame and address common water challenges. At the same time it is widely felt that topics tend to be repetitive, formats remain conventional and debates are institutionalised if not sanitised. Contentious issues are omitted; policy suggestions are generalised and lack context; and underlying interests and ideologies go unquestioned.

The editors of Water Alternatives feel that opening a space for creative and passionate, yet principled and measured, debates can help to widen the points of view expressed, challenge common wisdom and inspire alternative thinking. In line with our manifesto, we believe that greater interaction between decision-makers, water practitioners, researchers and civil society has the potential to enrich debate and practice, and challenge conventional wisdom to stimulate creative thinking.

Launching the forum

Water Alternatives is launching Water Dissensus – A Water Alternatives Forum as a new feature of our WaA platform. The forum will publish short, well-thought-out opinion pieces (500-1000 words) on critical water management, governance or policy issues. The intention is to generate debate and explore areas of dispute and controversy more easily than conventional papers.

The forum is intended to enhance the role of Water Alternatives as a space for critical discussion about water issues and to allow more 'passionate' discussion. Articles are posted on the fifteenth of each month and exchanges moderated for a period limited to three weeks after publication, with the assistance of the Forum editor, Doug Merrey. The forum is open to all Water Alternatives readers, including researchers, students, and water-management policymakers and practitioners.

While we expect posts to be well reasoned (with no unsupported assertions), submissions should be worded so as to generate discussion rather than merely inform.

The forum and journal editors of Water Alternatives invite you to contribute a post. Please send your proposals to forum@water-alternatives.org

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Stéphanie Hernandez on Tuesday, 12 November 2019 14:02

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