Water is an increasingly scarce resource. One of the most noteworthy discursive features of the last decades has been a growing awareness of water-related issues as a critically important component for regional stability. This situation helps to explain why, in many cases, water management involves political, economic, social, environmental and even military issues. But, in what intensity? This article analyzes the cases of Southern Africa and the Jordan River Basin due to their prevailing condition of water scarcity. In order to verify the role developed by the mechanisms of governance in accommodating the interests of the riparian states, the Hydropolitical Complexes Theory was applied. Inferences demonstrated a trend towards cooperation in Southern Africa that is due to the successful institutionalization of management mechanisms capable of minimizing potential for conflicts. On the other hand, in the Jordan Basin, the struggle to control water resources has been a significant factor in sustaining tension among riparian countries.
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