The farmers living in the river basin compete for the water access. The river basin is divided into three compartments: upstream, midstream and downstream. Through series of negotiations, players decide who will settle in which compartment. The game has eight rounds, during which each player individually decides how much water to use for irrigating the fields. Players have to take into the account the total water footprint of crop production in the basin, as it may affect the availability of water and its cost.
Water management in agriculture. Common pool resources, common goods.
Players discover the natural dynamics of water flow in a river basin (water balance, runoff and delay).
Players understand how a growing water footprint contributes to water scarcity and rising costs.
Players get acquainted with free-rider behaviour when depending on a common pool resource.
Players learn about the effects of an upstream water footprint on the water availability downstream.
Players experience social dynamics around common pool resource use, e.g. learn about incentives and barriers to cooperation.
You can play two or more river basins. The advantage of having more than one river basin is that at the end of the game you can show and discuss the results of both basins, which creates the opportunity for the participants to learn not only from their own case, but also about how it can go differently.
Number of players
Number of moderators
Downloadable instructions and Excel file for a moderator.
At least one computer for moderator.