Water is increasingly at the center of contentious disputes both in the U.S. and abroad. The nature of the high-profile conflicts range from clashes over water supplies and water quality, to flood control and conservation.Government leaders strive to adopt broadly supportable conservation mandates to help stretch already over-burdened water supplies.

The issues are highly contentious, and parties often find themselves engaged in a zero-sum, you-win-I-lose type of discussion. The challenge for government leaders at all levels is to figure out how to understand, integrate and account for the various perspectives and uncertainties and to do so at a time when climate change, rapid urbanization and other factors will only further exacerbate already difficult policy debates.

CONCUR brings a wealth of experience to this contentious policy area, from helping environmental, urban and agricultural representatives forge ground-breaking statewide conservation policy in California, to helping international business and government leaders build agreements for wise water use policies around the globe. CONCUR’s successful approach over the past 20 years has been grounded in several key strategies: framing issues in a way that brings relevant parties to the table; identifying and building on stakeholders’ common interests; working with participants to map areas of agreement and disagreement; and putting in place carefully structured dialogues to spotlight and resolve those critical uncertainties preventing parties from reaching agreement.

CONCUR puts a premium on teaming with other experts, from biologists and resource economists to agricultural irrigation engineers, to help bring well-informed approaches to policy dialogues. Our work has centered on all levels of government, from local cities to international trans-boundary disputes.