Estimating the Performance of International Regulatory Regimes: Methodology and Empirical Application to International Water Management in the Naryn/Syr Darya Basin
Water Resources Research, Vol. 43, 2007, DOI: 10.1029/2006WR005738
Posted: 27 Jul 2006 Last revised: 11 Dec 2017
Date Written: June 1, 2006
We develop a methodology for estimating the performance of international regulatory regimes in the context of transboundary surface waters. Our performance metric relies on assessments, over time, of actual performance, counterfactual performance, and optimal performance. The metric is of practical relevance as a diagnostic tool for policy evaluation. Thus it provides a starting point for policy improvement. To demonstrate the empirical relevance of this methodology we examine international water management in the Naryn/Syr Darya basin, a major international river system in Central Asia. The emphasis is on the Toktogul reservoir, the main reservoir in the Naryn/Syr Darya basin, and its downstream effects. The biggest policy challenge in this case has been to design and implement international trade-offs among water releases for upstream hydropower production in winter and water releases for downstream irrigation in summer. We find that the international regime in place since 1998 is characterized by low average performance and high variability.
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