Factsheet #29

Line ministry with specific water prerogatives

Instrument Type


Governance Level


Governance Mode


Water management topics addressed

Drought & water scarcity
Water abstraction for irrigation and other economic activities
Water quality issues due to nutrient pollution
Water quality issues: Other reasons

Implementation requirements

Financial capacity


Human capacity


Political buy-in


Timeframe for implementation


#29: Line ministry with specific water prerogatives


The sectoral ministry, who has specific responsibility for water, is often the main instrument used to ensure interdepartmental and interministerial coordination. Line ministries are responsible for stimulating and coordinating formal horizontal partnerships. In most cases their responsibilities range further that just those regarding water policy.


Examples of line ministries in water policy-making can be divided into three main categories: 
- The ones that integrate water policy into wider environmental issues; 
- The ones that integrate water policy with infrastructure and public works;
- The ones that integrate water policy with environmental problems and specific rural concerns. 

The positive effects of concentrating various water-related responsibilities within the same line ministry include a more open and coherent view of water policy, the concentration of technical and administrative skills and the possibility of a more integrated programming approach.

Example: The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in the Dominican Republic

In the Dominican Republic, the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources is a line ministry which is competent in the area of national environmental and natural resources. It promotes natural resource preservation through sustainable use as well as the restoration of these resources. In an effort to contribute to sustainable development, the line ministry intends to develop a participatory environmental dimension to the decisions and behaviors of the society, in a manner that is effective, efficient and transparent. To this end the management of the environment, the ecosystem and natural resources should be addressed through coordination.


OECD (2011). Water Governance in OECD countries: a multi-level approach (p. 80f.)
Retrieved on 22 September 2020

OECD (2012). Water Governance in Latin America and the Caribbean (p. 76ff).
https://www.oecd.org/governance/regional-policy/50064981.pdf Retrieved on 24 September 2020

Ministerio de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales – Rebublica Dominicana https://ambiente.gob.do/quienes-somos/ Retrieved on 24 September 2020

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