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Jagdeesh Rao (FES)


Project Title: Water Commons-Influencing Practice and Policy

Partner : Foundation for Ecological Security
Jagdeesh Rao
Executive Director
Foundation for Ecological Security
The project on ‘Water Commons – Influencing Practice and Policy, supported by the Hindustan Unilever Foundation (HUF), National Rural Employment Generation Act (NREGA), and the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) aims to improve the management and governance of land and water resources and impact rural livelihoods in more than 700 habitations across five states. Major components of the project include participatory planning, conservation of natural resources through watershed approach, livelihood enhancement, crop-water budgeting, promoting community cooperation to protect and improve common lands and shared water resources, and establishing wider networking and policy dialogue. 
FES is known for its work on Commons- both as resource systems and property regimes and works to secure the rights of local communities over shared resources such as pastures, forests and water bodies that are particularly vulnerable to neglect as a result of poor centralized governance but are effectively managed by local communities as joint assets. FES aims to centre stage Water Commons as a viable and promising property regime and alongside State led governance and its tenure as legitimate as individual ownership. A high order challenge in the management and governance of natural resources has been the dominant mindset that - local people cannot manage their own resources and that large governments are therefore needed to manage resources for local people. In the years to come, we shall strive to work in building strong evidence (together with partners) on effective management of water resources by local communities and community institutions and the

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