Topsoil aims to explore the possibilities for using the uppermost soil layers to solve present and future water challenges. However, implementing local measures is not enough. Strong governance is needed to help unify the different interests at different levels. We define water governance as the way the management of water resources is organized comprising all technical, organizational, legal, financial and political aspects, and the totality of interactions and collective actions taken by state and non-state actors.

The objectives of this WP are:

• To share knowledge on water governance models
• To develop a European governance assessment toolkit for Topsoil adaptation
• To develop regional roadmaps towards an optimal governance setting

In Topsoil, good groundwater governance is “the way of getting things done”.

Since models and information need to be supported by appropriate governance approaches, Topsoil dedicates much attention to better understand how legal frames, cooperation, and availability of resources can support the development and implementation of measures. The Transnational Governance Team developed a 2-hour workshop format which allows to identify identification of specific steps for a “roadmap”. The first workshops addressed the designation of water rights, groundwater flooding and reducing nutrient losses. Governance is also central in additional meetings the partners set up: For example, in August 2016 CDR organized a field trip for Danish stakeholders to different Topsoil pilots in Germany and the Netherlands. Further, a series of bilateral meetings between Dutch and German partners discuss in depth how to decrease the negative groundwater impact of maize growing. In these meetings, water and land managers benefit from discussion of their central issues from the perspective of the neighboring countries. Results from the workshop will feed into work package 7 (New management regime).

OOWV is responsible for work package 6.