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Access_open Through the Looking Glass of Global Constitutionalism and Global Administrative Law

Different Stories About the Crisis in Global Water Governance?

Journal Erasmus Law Review, Issue 1 2013
Keywords global water governance, global constitutionalism, global administrative law, water crisis, integrated water resources management
Authors Mónika Ambrus
AbstractAuthor's information

    In addition to (or sometimes rather than primarily) attributing it to water scarcity, water crisis has been described as a ‘crisis of governance’; with the word ‘crisis’ also indicating that water governance lacks (full) legitimacy. The article undertakes the task to analyse the current status of global water governance (GWG) from the perspective of two competing theories relating to the legitimacy of global governance, namely global constitutionalism (GC) and global administrative law (GAL). Having mapped the current legal framework of GWG from these two perspectives, it is discussed how these theories might shape GWG and how this shaping could contribute to solving the water crisis. In addition, it is also explored whether reading one of the most accepted proposals for legitimising global water governance, the concept of ‘integrated water resources management’ (IWRM), through the lenses of either GC or GAL would have an impact on how this concept is interpreted, and whether it can be a useful mechanism to address the water crisis. The use of two theories analysing the same subject matter provides interesting insights into global water governance and the nature of the water crisis as well as the relationship between these two theories.


Mónika Ambrus
Assistant professor of public international law at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Monika Ambrus

Marjolein Busstra

Kristin Henrard
Monika Ambrus is assistant professor at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam; Marjolein Busstra is policy advisor at the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Kristin Henrard is professor of minority protection also at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. This publication has been made possible by a generous VIDI grant of the Netherlands Foundation of Scientific Research. The authors wish to thank an anonymous referee and the editorial board of the Erasmus Law Review for thoughtful comments. The usual disclaimer applies.

Mónika Ambrus
PhD Candidate, Erasmus School of Law, Rotterdam. I am deeply grateful to Professor J. Gerards, K. Henrard and M. Busstra for their constructive and valuable comments and suggestions. The usual disclaimer applies.
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