The exchange of data and information relating to transboundary water resources is widely accepted as being an appropriate starting point for more comprehensive cooperation. This paper examines under what conditions data and information exchange occur in relation to shared water resources, and hence examines when it can be used as a confidence building measure. An overview of several major international river basins together with more detailed case studies of the Mekong, Rio Grande, and Rhine River basins suggest that factors that promote data and information exchange include the presence of compatible needs, absence of legacies of mistrust, increasing water resources stress, perceptions that cooperation is of mutual benefit, external pressure and funding, comparable levels of institutional capacity, popular and political concern about water resources management, and functional formal or informal cooperative arrangements. Analysis of the situation prevailing between Israel and the Palestinians with regard to shared water resources suggests that data and information exchange does not seem likely in the short term, even though other forms of cooperation have been established with mixed results. This suggests that in some situations, at least, data and information exchange relating to shared water resources may not be useful as a first step in establishing more comprehensive cooperation.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Limited funding from Israel and Jordan.
costs necessary to implement the 1960 treaty was arranged by the World Bank Ongoing activities by the Commission have been funded by India and Pakistan.
Some coopera tive activities receive support from the Comm ission of European Communities, and the European Union.
- Data exchange
- International water resources