In my third year of undergraduate study at Quest University, my academic mentor, Dr. Richard Wildman, asked me if I wanted to do a research project with him on the renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty. I said yes, and we applied successfully for a fellowship grant. I then spent three full-time months studying the topic and we continued the research part-time afterwards. Nearly two years later, in September 2018, an article based on our research was published in the highly selective academic journal, Water International. The article — Institutional factors affecting fish passage in the Columbia River Treaty renegotiation — characterizes the relevant context of the CRT renegotiation and identifies institutional factors which will affect the outcome as it pertains to the potential restoration of salmon to the upper watershed. 

After publishing our research, I wrote an Op-Ed article with the Evidence Network on the exclusion of Indigenous nations from the CRT renegotiation and what it might mean for salmon restoration. It has been published by the Hill Times (Ottawa).

Article abstract:

The USA and Canada have begun renegotiating the Columbia River Treaty, which is an international model for transboundary water governance. This article identifies six Institutional Factors that will affect negotiations pertaining to fish passage during the renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty: geographic advantage, issue linkage, a basin commission, the duration of agreements, negotiating autonomy, and side payments. These factors and the methods used to determine them can be applied to other transboundary river basins where basin states have a history of transboundary resource governance. This analysis also serves as a policy-relevant resource for Columbia River Treaty negotiators and stakeholders.

To find the web link for this article: Click here.
To download a full text copy of this article (12 pages long): Click here.
To download a short document containing key excerpts: Click here.

To cite this article:

Graeme A. Lee Rowlands & Richard A. Wildman (2018): Institutional factors affecting fish passage in the Columbia River Treaty renegotiation, Water International, DOI: 10.1080/02508060.2018.1511200

Top photo by Pat Morrow.