Conflicts over transboundary freshwater resources arise, to a large degree, because property rights are not clearly defined. International water law provides only hints and suggestions as to how states should resolve their water disputes—legal principles and clauses are rather ambiguous and contradictory. But conflict creates the need for cooperation, achieved by means of negotiations, and the specific outcome of negotiations is almost always codified in an international treaty. The work here investigates bilateral water agreements for rivers with specific geographical configurations and aims to answer a fundamental question: how and why bilateral treaties vary in their design? In fact, by considering actual treaties, one can "back out" the implicit property right. (For example, if a downstream state pays an upstream state to reduce its pollution, it can be said that the no harm principle does not stand). This dissertation will examine international freshwater treaties to deduce the nature of treaty remedies used for resolving conflict for rivers shared by two countries. Geography and economics are the main variables used to explore treaty design. This work is important not only because it investigates how particular variables determine different outcomes (by means of hypotheses testing). It will also tell us how international legal principles and property right conflicts are expressed and negotiated in practice and will, therefore, have implications for the resolution of ongoing or future interstate conflicts over a given river. A further aim of this research agenda is to probe the question of why conflict and cooperation over international rivers takes place, and by extension, why water treaties are negotiated in some cases and not others. This more general question will set the stage for the main research goals of this dissertation.
|Advisor:||Barrett, Scott, Zartman, William, Doran, Charles, Grygiel, Jakub, Wolf, Aaron|
|School:||The Johns Hopkins University|
|School Location:||United States -- Maryland|
|Source:||DAI-A 70/04, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Conflict, Cooperation, Freshwater, International rivers, Negotiation, Property rights, Treaties|
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