Tara PaulFollow

Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2013

Publication Citation

20 Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies 469 (2013)


Privatization of water delivery services has become a global trend as states seek ways to shift both political and economic costs to private actors. The advantage of privatization is that it relieves governments of the daunting expense of repairing and expanding water infrastructure in order to improve quality and reach marginalized communities. But water privatization has also been deeply criticized for corrupt practices, increasing prices to the poor, undermining human rights objectives, and dodging accountability. This note aims to find middle ground, acknowledging that privatization is an important tool to increase freshwater access, but that treating water as a human right coupled with a strong legal framework that fosters transparency, public participation, and accountability will increase individual rights protections as well as the chances for successful privatization projects. South Africa's Promotion of Administrative Justice Act is offered as one example of how administrative law can be used to harmonize these objectives.