TA3 – Urban Water Cycle and Essential Public Services


TA3 originated from the work of a group of researchers that started the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network through their participation in a number of collective and individual projects. These included monographic studies of social struggles over the access to water in urban areas of Latin America (Castro, 1992, 2006; Swyngedouw, 1995, 2004). Another project involved the participation of researchers in studies of water management in Europe and the Middle East (METRON Project, 1998-2000), which produced important contributions to the political ecology of urban water (Swyngedouw et. al., 2002). A founding project for TA3, and for the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network, was PRINWASS, a study of privatization policies in Africa, Latin America and Europe (PRINWASS, 2001-2004), which produced a series of publications of members of the Network and external collaborators (see among other, WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network Working Papers: Castro, 2014b and c). After the conclusion of PRINWASS in 2004, a group of the project’s researchers decided to create the GOBACIT Network, which later would become WATERLAT-GOBACIT. TA3 grew over the next few years with the incorporation of new researchers, students, public sector specialists, and representatives of social organizations, labour unions, and other civil society groups, especially in Latin America and Europe. This generated new collaborations, which included a number of publications with chapters and articles from members of TA3 and invited collaborators in books (Castro and Heller, 2009; Heller and Castro, 2013; Castro, Heller and Morais, 2015), special journal editions (Castro and Lacabana, 2005; Castro, Heller, and Drakeford, 2007; Castro and Ruiz, 2009; Castro, Heller and Morais, 2013; Moraes, Beretta, and Zanta, 2013; Santos, Moraes, and Gomes de Pinho, 2012) and WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers (Castro et. al., 2013; Castro, 2014a). Recently, TA3 contributed to the Network with two international research projects, DESAFIO (2013-2015) and UrbanRain (2014-2017). DESAFIO has already produced 10 issues of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers (Vol. 2, No 6 to 16, which can be consulted in the Working Papers web page).


TA3 Themes

TA3 Members

TA3 Working Papers

TA3 Multimedia gallery




Castro, José Esteban (1992), The Conflict over Water in Mexico. The Cases of Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, 1986-1991 (in Spanish). Master in Social Sciences, Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO), Mexico.

Castro, José Esteban (2006), Water, Power, and Citizenship. Social Struggle in the Basin of Mexico, Houndmills, Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave-Macmillan.

Castro, José Esteban (Ed.) (2014a), “Contradictions, obstacles and opportunities faced by the implementation of the human right to water” (in Spanish and Portuguese), WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers, Vol. 1. No 2.

Castro, José Esteban (Ed.) (2014b), “An examination of the politics of privatization of water and sanitation services in Latin America Latina. The experience of Argentina” Iin Spanish). WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers, Vol. 1, No 3.

Castro, José Esteban (Ed.) (2014c), “An examination of the politics of privatization of water and sanitation services in Latin America Latina. The experience of Brazil” (in Portuguese). WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers, Vol. 1, No 4.

Castro, José Esteban, Léo Heller, and Mark Drakeford (Eds.) (2007), Special issue on “Public Policy and the Management of Water and Sanitation Services”, Journal of Comparative Social Welfare, Vol. 23, No 2.

Castro, José Esteban (Ed.), Hermelinda Maria Rocha Ferreira and Alexandre Sávio Ramos (Orgs.) (2013), “Innovations and challenes for the democratization of water and sanitation services” (in Portuguese and Spanish, WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers, Vol. 1, No 1.

Castro, José Esteban, and Léo Heller (Eds.) (2009), Water and Sanitation Services: Public Policy and Management, London and Sterling, VA: Earthscan (Hbk), Routledge, 2012 (Pbk).

Castro, José Esteban, Léo Heller, and Maria da Piedade Morais (Eds.) (2013), Special issue on “The Struggle over the Right to Water and Public Policies in Latin America” (in Spanish), Agua y Territorio, No 2.

Castro, José Esteban, Léo Heller and María da Piedade Morais (Eds.) (2015), The Right to Water as Public Policy in Latin America: a Theoretical and Empirical Exploration (in Portuguese), Brasilia: Instituto de Pesquisa Econômica Aplicada (IPEA) and WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network.

Castro, José Esteban and Miguel Lacabana (2005), Special issue on “Water and Development in Latin America” (in Spanish), Cuadernos del CENDES, Vol. 22, No 59.

Castro, José Esteban and Inmaculada Simón Ruiz (Eds.) (2009), Special Issue on “Water and Inequality in Latin America” (in Spanish and Portuguese), Anuario de Estudios Americanos, Vol. 66, No 2.

Heller, Léo, and José Esteban Castro (Eds.) (2013), Public Policy and Management of Water and Sanitation Services (in Portuguese), Belo Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro: Editora da Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG) and Editora Fiocruz.

Moraes, Luiz Roberto Santos, Magda Beretta, and Viviana Maria Zanta (Eds.) (2013), Special Introductory issue on “Water Management” (in Portuguese), Revista Eletrônica de Gestão e Tecnologias Ambientais (GESTA), Vol 1, No 1.

DESAFIO Project (2013-2015), Democratisation of Water and Sanitation Governance by Means of Socio-Technical Innovation (DESAFIO), Newcastle University, United Kingdom (Co-ordinator).

METRON Project (1998-2000), Metropolitan Cities and Sustainable Use of Water (METRON), Oxford University, United Kingdom (Partner).

PRINWASS Project (2001-2004), Barriers and Conditions for the Involvement of Private Capital and Enterprise in Water Supply and Sanitation in Latin America and Africa: Seeking Economic, Social, and Environmental Sustainability (PRINWASS), Oxford University, United Kingdom (Co-ordinator).

UrbanRain Project (2014-2017), Urban rainwater harvesting from niche to mainstream: challenges and opportunities for planning (UrbanRain), Newcastle University, United Kingdom, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain (Partners).

Santos, Elisabete, Luiz Roberto Santos Moraes, and José Antônio Gomes de Pinho (Eds.) (2012), Special Issue on “The Challenge of Water Management in the 21st Century” (in Portuguese) Revista Interdisciplinar de Gestão Social (RIGS), Vol 1, No 1.

Swyngedouw, Erik (1995), The Crisis of Water Supply in Guayaquil (in Spanish). Quito: Ildis.

Swyngedouw, Erik, (2004), Social Power and the Urbanisation of Water: Flows of Power. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Swyngedouw, Erik, Maria Kaïka and José Esteban Castro (2002), “Urban Water: A Political-Ecology Perspective”, Built Environment, Vol. 28, No. 2, pp. 124-137.