- Indigenous Technical Knowledgesearch for term
This term is used to describe the existing technical knowledge in local societies/cultures.
ITK is particularly important for basic water supply, sanitation and irrigation activities since it has been used since time immemorial in the following contexts: well-digging and management; gravity-fed ponds; irrigation works; control of seasonal flows by terracing, diversion, dams, aqueducts, etc.; water-lifting. ITK often fulfils criteria of appropriateness and cost-effectiveness, and can be used as a basis for Participatory Technological Development (see below).
However, development professionals, who may even develop parallel systems without realising that ITK systems exist, often ignore it. ITK is most effectively gathered by using participatory approaches and observation.
Local people often do not know that a particular piece of local technology is unique, and they can also feel threatened by technology from outside. It is therefore important for them to understand that their technology is as valid as modern counterparts.
Further information: The Centre for Indigenous Knowledge on Agriculture and Rural Development, Iowa State University, USA, and The Leiden Ethno-systems and Development Programme (LEAD), Institute of Social and Cultural Studies, University of Leiden, Netherlands.
- Integrated water resources managementsearch for term
‘Integrated water resources management’ (IWRM) expresses the idea that water resources should be managed in a holistic way, co-ordinating and integrating all aspects and functions of water extraction, water control and water-related service delivery so as to bring sustainable and equitable benefit to all those dependent on the resource. IWRM therefore takes account of: natural aspects of the water resources system (surface water, groundwater, water quality); water uses in all sectors of the economy and for all purposes, including consumptive (agriculture, industry, domestic) and non-consumptive (ecosystems, hydropower, fisheries, recreation, navigation and flood control); the institutional framework for management of the resource; national objectives and constraints (social, legal, economic, financial, environmental); and the spatial variation of resources and demands (upstream-downstream, basin-wide usage, inter-basin transfer).
IWRM implies a concerted attempt to moderate between competing or conflicting demands by users and stakeholders. Effective IWRM will therefore be a dynamic and interactive process involving consultation across sectors, a high level of communications activity, and an appropriate institutional, legal and financial framework. The EU recognises the importance of IWRM in its Water Resources Framework Directive.
- International water lawsearch for term
In 1997, the UN General Assembly adopted a Convention on the Law of the Nonnavigable Uses of International Watercourses aimed at guiding states in negotiating agreements on specific watercourses, and invited member states and regional economic integration organisations to become parties. This is the most recent body of international legislation for negotiation and conflict resolution concerning transboundary waters. (See a fuller description of international legal instruments in Chapter 13.)