Negotiating watershed services

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London, UK: International Institute for Environment and Development


In response to the disappointing results of many regulatory or public investment approaches to watershed management, payments for environmental services has emerged as a new mechanism to maintain socially optimal environmental services by compensating people for the services they provide. However, without adequate understanding of stakeholders' willingness to modify or maintain land use or water resource decisions, market-based mechanisms may prove to be unsustainable, with uncertain social and environmental outcomes. Negotiating resource use patterns is a process that requires an understanding of the type, level and duration of incentives for stakeholders to co-operate meaningfully. In this paper, we describe a negotiation support framework that has been developed from the literature and field experiences in Costa Rica and India. The framework then serves to critically examine a case study from each country to draw empirical lessons from the process of watershed management.



Stakeholders, Payments for environmental services, Watershed management, Environmental services, Conservation incentives, PES, Payments for Watershed Services (PWS), Compensation, Market-based mechanisms, Incentives, Negotiation support framework, Costa Rica, India, Watershed


Markets for Environmental Services No. 11