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TitleUrban poverty and water management in Mexico
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsGarcia, PA
Pagination19 p. : 2 fig.
Date Published2001-01-01
PublisherGlobal Development Network (GDN)
Place PublishedWashington, DC, USA
Keywordscase studies, legislation, low-income communities, mexico, policies, poverty, sdipol, sdiurb, social aspects, urbanization, water management, water supply

This paper analyses the social tensions and disputes that arise in the cities in Mexico as a consequence of the urbanization of poverty, and more specifically, the conflicts over water in poor areas or squatter settlements. The paper identifies the causes of urban conflicts in relation to policy changes (including privatization), democratisation and urbanization. Water-related conflicts occur when there no legal framework and local power groups control access to water, or when poor people join urban movements that demand (improved) water services from the State. The paper differentiates several types of conflicts accompanied by collective action. While collective acts and confrontational protests were more common in the 1970s and 1980s, the paper states that urban movements were more characteristic of the 1990s. Urban movements in the 1990s emerged in response to state policies, such as reductions in social service spending, increases in tariffs and privatisation. In addition, the paper notes that changes in water legislation and policies had implications for the administration of urban services, and local Water Boards were created with combined public and social administration as an alternative to the privatization of this service. The paper highlights the case of Morelia as an example of the emergence of a different form of urban water administration, and of greater co-responsibility on the part of the users in the provision of public services. The paper argues that conflicts first centre on the provision of water and that in a second phase, they focus on changes in water management.

Notes40 ref.
Custom 1827, 205.42



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