In search of a (WEF) nexus approach

The water, food and energy (WEF) nexus is viewed as a fresh way of thinking about related issues. This has resulted in calls for a WEF nexus approach which is systemic, can handle its associated complexity, ambiguity and vagueness, as well as the multiple stakeholders, each with their respective viewpoint, and the implied governance implications. In response, the Cybernetic Methodology, a Problem Structuring Method, is offered as an approach to frame these issues. This permits the concept of WEF nexus to be examined and associated governance issues to be modelled, acknowledging the multi-level nature of governance, in particular, the need for co-ordination. This is illustrated drawing upon examples from the Mekong River Basin. It is concluded that this approach not only offers the capability of handing the situation relating to WEF nexus, but that its emphasis upon action and closure enhances collaborative engagement by its disparate participants.