Water governance in Chile: Availability, management and climate change

Rodrigo Valdés-Pineda, Roberto Pizarro, Pablo García-Chevesich, Juan B. Valdés, Claudio Olivares, Mauricio Vera, Francisco Balocchi, Felipe Pérez, Carlos Vallejos, Roberto Fuentes, Alejandro Abarza, Bridget Helwig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

147 Scopus citations


Chile has a unique geography that provides an extraordinary variety of climatic conditions and availability of water resources. The objective of this manuscript was to describe and analyze the spatial and temporal distribution patterns, as well as the management of water resources, along a country with a narrow distance from the Andes Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. This presents challenges to water governance from data collection and analysis perspectives, and for administration of the resource. The Water Resources Directorate (Dirección General de Aguas, DGA), is the federal government organization in charge of the water resources of the country. The DGA and other relevant public and private institutions are examined in terms of competition and conflict resolution across different scales and levels of interaction associated with water resources governance. Both monitoring stations (rainfall, streamflow, water quality, groundwater, sediment and snowfall), and the Chilean management and legislation of water resources are also analyzed. Finally, the success (or lack) of the national administration to upgrade its monitoring stations and equalize water resources distribution throughout the country is discussed including the influence of climate change on data collection, and decision making across different scales of water governance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2538-2567
Number of pages30
JournalJournal of Hydrology
Issue numberPC
StatePublished - 7 Nov 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Climate change and water resources
  • Water availability
  • Water governance in chile
  • Water resources management


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