Title: Groundwater governance: explaining regulatory non-compliance

Authors: Alice Cohen, Karen Bakker

Addresses: Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, University of British Columbia, Vancouver V6T 1Z4, Canada. ' Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver V6T 1Z2, Canada

Abstract: This paper explores the non-compliance of water users through a case study of groundwater resources in the Gulf Islands (British Columbia (BC)) and the San Juan Islands (Washington). The research challenges two assumptions: that local regulations can easily incorporate scientific research, which in turn leads to sound on-the-ground management; that sound on-the-ground management translates into effective enforcement at the local level. The authors suggest that non-compliance is a function of several intervening factors previously identified in the literature – regulatory awareness, expense, normative values, enforcement style – as well as one which has not yet been explored: biophysical fit.

Keywords: water governance; devolution; regulatory compliance; monitoring; enforcement; scale; Canada; United States; USA; non-compliance; water users; effective enforcement; local regulations; regulatory awareness; expense; normative values; enforcement style; biophysical fit.

DOI: 10.1504/IJW.2010.030589

International Journal of Water, 2010 Vol.5 No.3, pp.246 - 266

Published online: 24 Dec 2009 *

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