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This broad review of the development of US water resource policy analysis and practice offers perspectives from several disciplines: law, economics, engineering, ecology and political science. While the historical context provided goes back to the early 19th century, the book concentrates on the past sixty years and features a discussion of the difficulty that has generally been encountered in bringing the disciplines of economics and ecology into collaboration in the water resource context.
The book explores the evolution of water related analytical capabilities and institutions and provides illustrations from case studies, concluding with recommendations for research, institutional change and action. Though designed to be a background textbook for interdisciplinary graduate seminars in water resources planning and management, it is accessible to interested lay readers and those who have policymaking or implementation responsibility but lack a technical background.