Graduation Year

Spring 2012

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Environment, Economics, and Politics (EEP)

Reader 1

William Ascher

Reader 2

J. Emil Morhardt

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Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.

Rights Information

© 2012 Elena M. Davert

Abstract

Reliable access to potable water is one of the most important building blocks for developing countries. Clean drinking water not only helps people break free of the cycle of poverty, but fulfilling basic health needs allows communities to address long-term development goals and improve their quality of life. Although the Millennium Development Goals aimed to halve the number of households lacking access to clean drinking water by 2015, many countries around the world still struggle to improve water coverage to their poorest citizens. Latin America is no exception, and despite being one of the most water-rich regions in the world, over 50 million people still lack access to reliable potable water. In a case study of Mexico City, this paper analyzes the trends of decentralization, privatization, and water management reform characteristic of Latin America, as well as their effects on universal water coverage. The analysis reveals that not only is privatization not a prerequisite characteristic of successful water resource management, but that local governments may be equally successful at expanding their water networks through the implementation of tariff reform, output-based aid, and increased public participation.

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