Stuart Horsman
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Transboundary water management and security in Central Asia

Historically water provided a cultural, economic and geographical focus for Central Asia. The khanates' political culture, including deferential collectivism, was associated with water scarcity and the organisational requirements of the construction and maintenance of irrigation systems. Water's security implications principally fall within the wider conceptualisation of security, as an indirect or contributory cause to instability. Poor water management affects diplomatic relations, economic development, public health and access to land. The most fundamental and important function that an international institution can undertake is actually managing and allocating the region's water resources. Regional and international organisations have had mixed success in managing Central Asia's water. Most of the Central Asian leaders lack a genuine commitment to finding a viable solution to the regional water crisis. The lack of commitment is evident in the republics' limited support of the relevant organisations.

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