Soft Power of Tajikistan on the Water Agenda: Cross-Scale Dynamics

  • Jon Marco ChurchEmail author
Part of the The Handbook of Environmental Chemistry book series (HEC, volume 85)


Freshwater is among the major resources of Tajikistan. With the majority of the surface water originating from its territory, the country represents a water tower for the Amu Darya and consequently for the Aral Sea. Per inhabitant, Tajikistan uses much less of the water resources used in other riparian countries and has a significant hydropower potential. To fully develop it, Tajikistan follows a sophisticated strategy that includes the construction of the Rogun dam and that is articulated on several levels: from the citizen level to the national level with a national water sector reform and to the international level with many bilateral, regional, and global initiatives. Tajikistan has become one of the leading countries on water cooperation at the global level and places the United Nations at the center of global water governance. The soft power of Tajikistan on the water agenda can be broken down in several attributes: the international context with a fragmented global water governance; the leadership provided at the highest levels of the state and the stability of power structures; the expertise and capacity built in the country; the support of many countries, international organizations, and international financial institutions; as well as the traditional hospitality of the Tajik people. This all contributes to the so-called Dushanbe Spirit. With its water initiatives and by hosting conferences in Dushanbe, Tajikistan provides a public good to the international community. The latest initiative to date led to the declaration by the UN General Assembly of the International Decade for Action “Water for Sustainable Development” (2018–2028).


Scale Soft power Tajikistan United Nations Water 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.HABITER Research LaboratoryUniversity of ReimsReimsFrance

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