This project used Participatory Systems Mapping (PSM) to map 2 catchments (Eden and Medway) in terms of factors which influence the water system. Mapping was undertaken with stakeholders from the public, private and tertiary sector. The maps were then analysed to identify factors of high influence, potential levers for policy interventions, trade-offs and co-benefits. The project also assessed the usefulness of this PSM approach for future projects which aim to increase understanding of the water system and identify potential ways to improve water Governance.
The project found that the process was beneficial in allowing stakeholders to see the water system in a more comprehensive light. Each group has a tendency to frame systems problems in ways that pre-empt their preferred interventions whether that is regulation, innovation and trade or collaborative collective action, coming together to analyse it, insights are produced which are more representative of complex real-life problems.
In the Eden and Medway case studies stakeholder generally found the process useful and the mapping led to new ideas for how the maps can be used to improve water management. The project provides recommendations for ways to further improve the systems mapping approach in future.
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