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Race, Ethnicity, and the Case for Intersectional Water Security

Harrington, Cameron; Montana, Phellecitus; Schmidt, Jeremy J.; Swain, Ashok

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Cameron Harrington

Phellecitus Montana

Ashok Swain


This Forum article reports on a meta-review of more than 19,000 published works on water security, of which less than 1 percent explicitly focus on race or ethnicity. This is deeply concerning, because it indicates that race and ethnicity—crucial factors that affect the provision of safe, reliable water—continue to be ignored in academic and policy literatures. In response to this finding the Forum calls for building intersectional water security frameworks that recognize how empirical drivers of social and environmental inequality vary both within and across groups. Intersectional frameworks of water security can retain policy focus on the key material concerns regarding access, safety, and the distribution of water-related risks. They can also explicitly incorporate issues of race and ethnicity alongside other vectors of inequality to address key, overlooked concerns of water security.


Harrington, C., Montana, P., Schmidt, J. J., & Swain, A. (2023). Race, Ethnicity, and the Case for Intersectional Water Security. Global Environmental Politics, 23(2), 1-10.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date Mar 17, 2023
Publication Date 2023
Deposit Date Mar 23, 2023
Publicly Available Date Mar 23, 2023
Journal Global Environmental Politics
Print ISSN 1526-3800
Electronic ISSN 1536-0091
Publisher Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 23
Issue 2
Pages 1-10
Public URL


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