Toward creating an environment of cooperation between water, energy, and food stakeholders in San Antonio Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • The San Antonio Region is home to a rapidly growing population with developing energy and agricultural sectors competing for water, land, and financial resources. Despite the tight interconnectedness between water, energy, and food challenges, little is known about the levels of communication and coordination among the various officials responsible for making the decisions that affect the management and planning of the three resource systems. It has been postulated that efficient communication is a prerequisite to developing resource allocation strategies that avoid potential unintended negative consequences that could result from inefficient allocation of natural resources and competing demands. Factors that may impact communication are identified and their potential roles are considered in improving existing levels of communication between San Antonio's water officials and those at other energy, food, and water institutions in the San Antonio Region. A questionnaire designed to gather information on stakeholder concerns, frequency of communication, and participation in engagement forums was sent to public water officials in the Region. Using social network analysis and bivariate Ordinary Least Square regression analysis, the authors conclude that while modest levels of communication exist among water institutions, a very low level of communication exists between water institutions and those responsible for food and energy. It was further concluded that the frequency of communication among officials at different water institutions is higher among those that participated in stakeholder engagement activities. However, there is insufficient evidence to suggest that participation in stakeholder engagement activities improves communication frequency between water stakeholders and those in the food and energy sectors. There is also insufficient evidence to conclude that people at water institutions in San Antonio would have a higher frequency of communication with other water, energy, and food stakeholder in correlation with a higher level of concern about future water availability in the Region.

author list (cited authors)

  • Daher, B., Hannibal, B., Portney, K. E., & Mohtar, R. H.

citation count

  • 31

publication date

  • October 2018