Guiding Principles

First, to provide clarity and understanding about what shared governance means and how it can be effectively implemented to deliver the outcomes of the Water for Life strategy. In September, 2008 the team’s recommendation report Strengthening Partnerships was approved by the Council. The report outlines how the shared governance model can be improved and pays particular attention to the roles, responsibilities, relationships and accountabilities for the various partnerships identified in the Water for Life strategy.

The team’s second task was to clarify the process and content that should guide the creation of watershed management plans in Alberta. Their final report, Recommendations for a Watershed Management Planning Framework for Alberta, was approved by the Council in December 2008 and recommends several improvements to the current approach. These include clarifying some aspects of the shared governance approach and how it applies to watershed management planning, improving accountability, and ensuring adequate resources are available to undertake these important tasks.

As part of their process, the Shared Governance and Watershed Planning Framework Project Team hosted four by-invitation, full-day facilitated workshops across Alberta in November 2007. The workshops were guided by a workshop discussion guide and its companion document. The What We Heard Report captures and consolidates workshop participants’ points-of-view into a summary document. No attempt was made to evaluate the factual accuracy of any viewpoint expressed or to reconcile opposing points-of-view in this summary. The What We Heard Report was used by the Project Team to inform its debate over key issues as they completed their work. A literature review was also completed to help inform the project team, which resulted in an Annotated Bibliography.