Irrigation has a long history and important developmental role in India and Nepal. Even then it is faced with critical challenges as new scarcities and environmental stresses emerge, for which understanding technology and institutional choices is vital. Through case studies conducted in these two countries, Controlling the Water explores the means of controlling water used in irrigation management, looking at the sources and technologies in practice, and the institutions evolving around them.
This volume shows the range of irrigation technologies developed in different agro-ecological zones-large-scale public canal systems; small-scale farmer-managed canal systems; ponds and tank irrigation systems; and groundwater-based and conjunctive use settings, including micro-hydel systems developed alongside irrigation. It thus portrays not only the complexities of water environments and systems in irrigation, but also the diversities present in technological and institutional trajectories. It also provides a synthesis of theoretical ideas and conceptual frameworks that have been used to study these dynamics of water control.