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Friday 09 Mar 2018How water regulation works. And why it doesn't.

Professor Ian Barker - Water Policy International Ltd

Harrison 170 11:30-12:30

Abstract: England and Wales have one of the most structured and comprehensive water regulation regimes in the world. It was designed to ensure that the privatised water industry did not put profits before the needs of customers or the environment. Rivers and beaches are cleaner than they have been for generations, and drinking water standards are rigorously maintained. But do these headlines mean that regulation has been effective in delivering government policy for water, preventing pollution and giving customers a good deal? This lecture will explore where regulation has worked well, and where it hasn’t.

Biography: Professor Ian Barker is Managing Director of Water Policy International Ltd, an independent consultancy and commentator on water management, regulation, policy and governance. Ian is an expert advisor to the OECD, advising them on water governance, regulation and policy and is a founding member of their global water governance initiative. He is also Vice-President Environment, Fellow and Director at the Institute of Water; a Council Member at the Society for the Environment; a Director of the Water Industry Forum and a Visiting Professor at the University of Exeter Centre for Water Systems. Ian has over 35 years’ experience in the water sector, including having had overall responsibility at the Environment Agency for water planning, regulation and management, as well as fisheries, biodiversity and land management, across England and Wales. At the EA Ian worked closely with Defra and was responsible for specifying the water companies’ programmes of environmental investment totalling 1 billion pounds sterling pa. He also had oversight of their long-term plans for water supply security and drought management, and the management of all abstractions and discharges by all sectors. He now works with the OECD, UNESCO, governments, regulators, water companies and major consultancies.

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