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Nebraska's unique governance of water management systems

Research Achievements

Nebraska's unique governance of water management systems

Nebraska’s water management systems have undergone many changes and have evolved from state control over all water resources to state control over surface water and local control over groundwater where surface water and groundwater are hydrologically connected. This governance structure, unique to Nebraska, takes an innovative approach to water resource management. However, prior to this research, little if any data existed on how well the management system was working. Qualitative interviews reveal that the characteristics stakeholders feel as vital to the successful management of water resources corroborate well with common-pool resources principles for institutional success established to date. Receiving an IGERT assistantship allowed Ph.D. student C. Hoffman to move to Nebraska where she completed her Ph.D. program in 3 years. IGERT funding also provided critical financial support for interviews and surveys conducted for the study.