Title: Environmental governance, service quality and drinking water: a participatory diagnosis conducted through a water ombudsman

Authors: José Gutiérrez-Pérez; José R. Reta

Addresses: Department of Educational Methology Research, University of Granada, Campus Universitario de Cartuja, Granada s/n 18071, Spain ' OIKOS Environmental Management, Ombudsman Services, Bo Lumaco, Manzana 'D', Casa 4-Bermejo, Guaymallén-Mendoza, Republic of Argentina

Abstract: This study focuses mainly on the search for new-generation models of democracy based on the principles of governance and the quality of public drinking water services. We analyse the participatory initiatives implemented by the Argentinian government over the past twenty years and look at how these have led to alternative models for utility operators. The study describes users' perceptions of their drinking water service, the way in which the service is regulated, the most frequent causes for complaint and the awareness-raising initiatives implemented by OIKOS, an environmental organisation that acts as 'water ombudsman' in the Mendoza province.

Keywords: environmental governance; drinking water; public–private partnerships; PPPs; Argentina; participatory diagnosis; service quality; water ombudsman; democracy; public participation; users perceptions; water services; regulation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJW.2014.057792

International Journal of Water, 2014 Vol.8 No.1, pp.63 - 81

Available online: 19 Sep 2013

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