Water is both an essential resource and a source of disease and conflict in contemporary Africa. And we begin to learn that far distant processes of consumption and pollution can have their impact on the water systems of Africa: global warming produced by the material culture of the first world threatens the weather systems and very survival of developing countries. In this context, this volume – the product of an expert meeting at Cornell University’s Institute for African Development – traces and tracks the dynamics of the contemporary hydropolitics of Africa.The volume contains a variety of approaches to the study of the organisation of water within Africa ranging from technical essays on water borne diseases, through institutional analyses of the legal and political arrangements around the distribution of water to social policy analyses of the unmet demand for water amongst Africa’s poor. Taken as a whole, the volume provides the reader with a useful reference work on the contemporary hydropolitics of Africa whilst simultaneously providing a lively introduction to a critical and much neglected area of African development policy.
Margaret Grieco is Series Editor of the Cornell Institute for African Development Series.