The following research documents were created by several OSU graduate students from 2010 to present. The work is part of an ongoing set of water-related research conducted at Oregon State University, connected with the Transboundary Freshwater Dispute Database.

A Quick History of the Columbia River Treaty

Columbia River Treaty -- A Brief History

Description: 

Columbia River Treaty -- A Brief History, From the Columbia Basin Trust


Learn More - Atlas of Columbia River Basin

Learn more about the Columbia River Basin through an interactive atlas created by OSU undergraduate and graduate students in Computer-Assisted Cartography, a course offered through OSU's College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science.  The atlas provides a broad overview of the Columbia River Basin, illustrates the dramatic geological events that shaped the basin’s landscape, explains the rich cultural history, and documents recreational and economical land uses within in the basin. Available as:

Universities Consortium on Columbia River Governance

The purpose of the Universities Consortium on Columbia River Governance and annual symposiums are to bring research informed by stakeholder input to bear on the issues of importance to both the US and Canada in the Pacific Northwest.  Oregon State hosted the 2nd Annual Symposium in 2010.  Through the Consortium OSU and University of Idaho researchers have collaborated on research on the Columbia River Treaty Review Process resulting in the report:

Included in the report is work by OSU students presented in the poster:

During the 2012, 4th Annual Symposium on Columbia River Governance OSU students produced a documentary film, Voices of the Basin, which provided an update on where the Columbia River Treaty process, as well as interviews of new stakeholders included in the current treaty process but not the original negotiations.  A summary of the 4th Annual Sympoisum is also available. 

A River Loved

OSU Graduate Dr. Julie Watson's Master's thesis research texted a "facilitative" documentary film as a facilitation tool to promote dialogue, understanding, and creative scenario development in the Columbia River Basin.  She measured participants' reactions to the film and concluded that interventions such as facilitative documentary film have great potential to transform complex, multi-stakeholder social-ecological policy situations. Her thesis titled A river loved : facilitating cooperative negotiation of transboundary water resource management in the Columbia River Basin through documentary film is available on OSU's Scholar's Archive.  She created a presentation and poster that summarize and expand her research.  For questions on Julie Watson's film or research, please contact her directly.  Watch A River Loved:

 

A River Loved: A film about the Columbia River & the people invested in its future


Water Governance: Process and Outcomes in the Columbia River Basin

OSU Graduate Dr. Kim Ogren’s dissertation research on the evaluation of water governance decision making processes includes two case studies on the recent reviews of the Columbia River Treaty in the US and Canada. As part of this research, she developed a synthesis framework for evaluating and improving water governance decision making called the Water Governance Process Assessment (Water GPA). The framework draws upon 22 existing frameworks rooted in resilience, adaptive governance, and good governance; it identifies a way to evaluate four characteristics critical to good water governance decision making processes: 1) accountability, 2) inclusivity, and 3) information, and 4) context. Dr. Kim Ogren's dissertation is titled: Water Governance Process Assessment: Evaluating the Link Between Decision Making Processes and Outcomes in the Columbia River Basin and is available on OSU's Scholar's Archive

She also highlights other research on the Columbia River including a white paper, entitled, “Summary of Known Canadian Perspectives on the Columbia River Treaty” as well as maps of the Columbia River Basin. For questions on the University Consortium and Kim Ogren's related research, please contact her directly.

Transboundary Cooperation in the International Columbia River Basin

The Northwest Power and Conservation Council with the Columbia Basin Trust commissioned the Transboundary Cooperation in the International Columbia River Basin report, which assesses the existing areas of cooperation and collaboration across the Columbia River Basin as well as identifies area for improved cooperation. Meghan Carter and OSU Water Resources Policy and Management Master's student Ingrid Timboe in partnership with the Universities Consortium on Columbia River Governance identified and interviews transboundary initiatives throughout the basin. Based on these interviews, the authors identified that the most compelling needs in the basin are improving coordination, coordinating fishery management, creating integrated invasive species management, improving interconnectedness and shared responsibility, and cultivating a basin wide identity.

The full report, Transboundary Cooperation in the International Columbia River Basin: A Preliminary Assessment of Existing Arrangements and Future Prospects, was released September 2015.

OSU Water Resources Policy and Management Master's student Ingrid Timboe expanded upon the report as part of her Master's Thesis. In the absence of a formal treaty or river basin organization in place to manage issues broadly related to ecosystem function, her thesis explores the many ways in which the United States and Canada are and are not co-managing the ecological function of the transboundary basin.  Her thesis titled Assessing the Current State of Transboundary Water Cooperation in the International Columbia River Basin is available on OSU's Scholar's Archive.

Her interview notes with initiative managers throughout the Columbia River Basin are available here. In addition, she has complied a database of the transboundary initiatives throughout the basin.

This research and report was supported by: