Interesting/Inspiring Quotes

“People exploit what they have merely concluded to be of value, but they defend what they love, and to defend what we love we need a particularising language, for we love what we particularly know.”

  • Wendell Berry, from:


Quod omnes tangit ab omnibus comprobetur – ‘what touches all should be agreed to be all’

  • in reference to the convention of ‘consent’ in constitutional theory in relation to First Nations of Canada. Turner, 2006, p. 85


“Focusing on how key actors shape decision-making processes allows examination of how states’ positions are determined by internal dynamics within the different states’ organs as well as through states’ interactions with other key actors at local, national, and international level”

-Suhardiman and Giordano, 2012, p. 303


“Those who are excellent at their work have learned to comfortably coexist with failure. The excellent fail more often than the mediocre.

They begin more. They attempt more. They attack more. Mastery lives quietly atop a mountain of mistakes.”

—Eric Greitens from Resilience


“…water governance [is] a means to an end, not an end in itself, i.e. the range of political, institutional and administrative rules, practices and processes (formal and informal) through which decisions are taken and implemented, stakeholders can articulate their interests and have their concerns considered, and decision-makers are held accountable for water management”

OECD (2015). OECD Principles on Water Governance, p. 5


“It all evens out, sooner or later”

Man on bike in Vancouver, late summer 2014, in reference to our passing one another a few times. But, on that day in particular, it resonated with me deep down, in regards to stress, work load, and getting through my comps.


“In most Western conceptions, a border takes what is open and creates something closed. The challenge we face as a society in managing the way we use water is to overcome the conceptual limitations we have placed on ourselves, largely through our use and ideas about boundaries”

Phare, M-A. (2013). Indigenous Peoples and Water. in Norman, E., Cohen, A., and Bakker, K. (2013). Water Without Borders? Canada, the United States, and Shared Waters. pp. 44.


“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”

– Jack


“Processes of socio-environmental change are…never socially or ecologically neutral”

– Swyngedouw, E. (2009). The Political Economy and Political Ecology of the Hydro-Social Cycle. Journal of Contemporary Water Research & Education, 142(1), 57


“Reconciling the often conflicting needs, values, and interests of various stakeholders without further compromising environmental quality is a key challenge facing Canadian society – and, indeed, all of the world’s citizens”

-de Loe and Kreutzwiser in Eau Canada, p. 86


‘‘however intensively or extensively data are collected, however much we know of how the system functions, the domain of our knowledge of specific ecological and social systems is small compare to that of our ignorance’’

-Holling, 1978: pg.7, cited in Nelson et al. 2008, p. 590


“It is ideas, not material forces, that move history: so the key to changing the world is to change ideas”

– Dryzek, J. S. (2005). The Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses. Oxford University Press, p. 194


“The management of international watercourses is not simply about the water that flows through them today, but the particular histories of how the water within them and the local human and environmental relationships to them have been produced”

-Furlong, K. (2006). Hidden theories, troubled waters: International relations, the “territorial trap”, and the Southern African Development Community’s transboundary waters. Political Geography, 25(4), 448.


“Territory is not; it becomes, for territory itself is passive, and it is human belief and actions that give territory meaning”

– Knight (1982, p. 517) cited in Norman and Bakker (2009). Transgressing Scales: Water Governance Across the Canada-US Borderland. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 99(1), 102.


“Everything is going to be alright”



“…the global water crisis is not simply a matter of physical scarcity; it is also a crisis of governance”

Weinthal, E., Troell, J., & Nakayama, M. (Eds.). (2014). Water and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding (p. 2). Routledge.


“Resilience thinking is really about changing in order not to change”

S. Carpenter quoted in Walker, B., & Salt, D. (2012). Resilience Practices: Building Capacity to Absorb Disturbance and Maintain Function. Island Press. P. 24


“The most common form of water conflict today is not the interstate water wars foreseen by so many international relations prognosticators, but rather the societally based conflicts between the proponents and opponents of controversial ways of manipulating water or the rules controlling it.”

Conca, K. (2006). Governing Water: Contentions Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building. MIT Press. P. 376


“Hydrogeography is not destiny…”

Conca, K. (2006). Governing Water: Contentions Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building. MIT Press. P. 311


“Governance of water involves enduring, chronic, and sometimes raging controversies about local practices of resource management, conservation, and environmental protection in an increasingly transnational context. As such, water is illustrative of a whole array of socioecological controversies that we can think of under the rubric of contentious transnational environmental politics.” p. 8

Conca, K. (2006). Governing Water: Contentions Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building. MIT Press.


“The question that must be addressed…is not how to care for the planet, but how to care for each of the planet’s millions of human and natural neighborhoods”

Wendell Berry, 1990 (p. 200) cited in Conca (2006, p. 20)


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