The critical role of institutional settings and arrangements in the determination of performance in natural resources management, especially since the development of New Institutional Economics, seems to be out of discussion. Although institutional reforms had been earlier implemented in more developed economies (such as Japan, USA, France.) in late 1980s governments in developing countries have embarked in vast reforms aimed at devolving responsibilities over irrigation water management to local institutions crafted by resource users. In Haiti, although some previous isolated trials, such institutional changes in the water sector have started in late 1990s. In this Master Thesis dissertation we analyze the devolution process (over irrigation water governance and management) in Haiti and we study the community-based management in three irrigation schemes from an institutional point of view. The dissertation is structured in seven chapters. The first one describes the study, which includes background information, problem statement, objectives of the study, and the hypotheses we have formulated to guide the study. The second chapter is devoted to outline some relevant theories and present the theoretical and analytical framework. The third chapter describes the material and methods that are used to gather data and information. Chapter four presents the synthesis of an extensive literature review: it includes the analysis of the main IMT strategies implemented worldwide and the discussion of the major factors that explain differences in success from one country to another. Finally, the devolution or IMT process in Haiti is analyzed in this chapter. Chapters five and six present the findings of the field study. While chapter five discusses the community-based management of irrigation water in the three selected schemes, chapter six presents the results and discussions of their management performance. In the seventh and last chapter we draw the most important conclusions of the study and we make some suggestions for improvements in both the devolution process and irrigation scheme management.

Michelet Boyer
Universiteit Gent - Faculteit Bio-ingenieurswetenschappenGent BE
Werken in het water - landbouw