Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The social construction of water in Dominica and how it has influenced use and exportation
by Pickering, Evelyn, M.A., The University of Arizona, 2014, 117; 1571772
Abstract (Summary)

Dominica has been recognized for its landscape containing hundreds of rivers and receiving high rainfall, and "our water belongs to the world," or so says many Dominican citizens, and their government. A schism exists in the understanding of the water resources of Dominica. Local perceptions are in conflict with regional climate change data. Where climate change research has found Dominica to be high risk for water quality and quantity, locals maintain the mindset that there is an overabundance of the resource. Local epistemologies influence governmental water management practices, which presently focus on exportation of the resource. In efforts of economic development, while trusting that there is a surplus of water, Dominica leases billions of gallons of water each year to foreign companies. A popular conception on the island is that there is an abundance of water, and therefore, it should be shared globally. This unique social construction of Dominican water has been a foundation leading to the sale of billions of gallons of fresh water to international corporations. However, the bulk exportation of water is occurring in the context of climate change, and thus, the availability of water will be impacted by changes in annual rainfall, sea level rise, increased temperatures, and more severe hurricanes. The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of how the social understanding of water in Dominica was constructed, and what this means in relation to resource exportation and climate change. This research-based paper explores Dominican perceptions of water abundance and sustainability.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Stoffle, Richard W.
Commitee: Baro, Mamadou A., Greenberg, James B.
School: The University of Arizona
Department: Anthropology
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: MAI 54/02M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Cultural anthropology, Climate Change, Caribbean Studies, Water Resource Management
Keywords: Bulk water exportation, Caribbean, Cultural impacts, Dominica, Water
Publication Number: 1571772
ISBN: 9781321441727
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