Talk42 Evolution of Water Institutions in the Indus River Basin: Reflections from the Law of the Colorado River

Thursday, 13 June, 2019


Transboundary water institutions in the Indus River Basin can be fairly characterized as broken in key respects. These include international relations between Pakistan and India over the Indus Waters Treaty, as well as interprovincial relations within Pakistan over the 1991 Water Accord.

LEAD Pakistan is hosting an interactive session by Dr. Erum Sattar, the lead author on a co-authored paper written with colleagues at the Universities of Wyoming and Utah, “Evolution of Water Institutions in the Indus River Basin: Reflections from the Law of the Colorado River”. The paper stems from research undertaken by the authors for the Harvard Water Federalism Project and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). It seeks to spur the evolution of the Indus River Basin’s water institutions by offering a comparative perspective and reference points about transboundary water allocation, conservation, and governance, from North America’s most “institutionally encompassed” basin, the Colorado River Basin.

Dr. Erum Sattar received her Doctorate in Juridical Sciences (S.J.D.) from Harvard Law School (HLS, 2017) with a focus on water federalism and trans-boundary water sharing in the Indus River Basin. Prior to Harvard, she qualified as a Barrister-at-Law from The Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn. She co-founded the Water Law Study Group at HLS and teaches water law and development policy at Tufts University. In 2019-20 she will be a Visiting Professor at the National University of Singapore (NUS) School of Law where she will teach the School’s first ever course on water law, ‘Water Rights and Resources’.

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