Water History

, Volume 11, Issue 3–4, pp 185–206 | Cite as

Qanat and territorial cooperation in Iran

Case study: Qanat of Hasan Abad, Yazd
  • Majid Labbaf KhaneikiEmail author


In the central plateau of Iran, the climatic and geographical conditions promoted the technology of qanat which on its turn underlay the production systems in this region. A qanat consists of a series of shaft wells interconnected by a subterranean tunnel into a hill slope that drains out the groundwater seepage and conveys it onto the earth surface. This paper takes up the qanat of Hassan Abad and its peculiarities from which a model of common benefit has been abstracted. This model explains how several territories with similar economic structure could have developed a cooperative water management system that ensures sustainable water equality. The Hasan Abad qanat originates from Ebrahim Abad valley near the town of Mehriz and travels 40 km to Yazd. The water of this qanat is shared between the town of Mehriz and the villages of Dehno and Hasan Abad. One of the most important properties of this qanat is its territorial cooperation which relates to the qanat’s dynamics. The paper argues that dormant territorial behavior can pave the way for a high sense of cooperation and social capital, which are all associated with the peculiarities of qanat.


Common benefit Qanat Water management Territorial cooperation Social capital 



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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Center on Qanats and Historic Hydraulic Structures (UNESCO-ICQHS)YazdIran

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