CFP: Workshop on Water Infrastructure and Regional Governance

September 29 - October 1, 2020


The Regional Studies Association’s research Network on Infrastructural Regionalism (NOIR) is convening three online (Zoom) workshops to showcase empirical and conceptual research at the intersection of water governance, infrastructure, and regionalism. Water infrastructure performs a vital role in making and remaking regions. Watersheds and reservoirs, pipelines and ports, and storm water management and climate change mitigation represent complex political, economic, and environmental challenges. They are essential, if often black-boxed infrastructures that define how regional space is constructed, territorialized, and experienced. As critical urban infrastructures and contested political objects, water systems are fundamental to conversations about sustainability and economic development trajectories for communities across the global South and global North.


The NOIR Workshops on Water Infrastructure and Regional Governance will critically assess how water infrastructure shapes formal and informal regional space and governance dynamics and how these, in turn, shape how water infrastructure is developed. We invite applications for workshop panelists whose research will contribute to a series of conversations unpacking what water infrastructure reveals about the politics and governance of metropolitan regions. Original research papers will be considered for inclusion in a planned journal special issue. We are particularly interested in panelists whose work addresses the regional implications of water infrastructure governance, and questions regarding:


· Who is represented in decision-making about regional infrastructures, and how are competing interests mediated?

· What values shape discourses and decisions related to infrastructure and its management?

· How are the changing dynamics of city-regions influencing the governance of regional infrastructures?

· What complexities can undermine/empower regional partnerships?

· Determining how decisions on regional infrastructural governance are made will help us to explain their impact on local communities.

The deadline for applications to present at the workshop is Friday, July 31st, and papers are due by Monday, September 13th. Enquiries and applications (including a 250 word abstract and brief biographical sketch) should be sent to Michael Glass (glass@pitt.edu).


More information on the Network on Infrastructural Regionalism can be found at www.noir-rsa.com, https://www.regionalstudies.org/network/infrastructural-regionalisms-noir/, or in the recent papers published by the NOIR team.[1]

[1] Addie, Jean Paul D., Michael R. Glass, and Jen Nelles. 2020. “Regionalizing the Infrastructure Turn: A Research Agenda.” Regional Studies, Regional Science.

Glass, Michael R., Jean Paul D. Addie, and Jen Nelles. 2019. “Regional Infrastructures, Infrastructural Regionalism.” Regional Studies.

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