Abstract for: Sustainable Groundwater Management in Konya Closed Basin in Turkey: Participatory System Dynamics Approach

Water is an essential input in agriculture; farmers all over the world depend on water availability to boost their production and profit. Lack of available surface water, especially in arid or semi-arid regions, render groundwater a vital resource for the continuity of agriculture. Konya Closed Basin is a semi-arid watershed located in Central Anatolia, Turkey. It has significant agricultural potential and is referred to as “the granary of the country” by Turkish people. In recent years, Konya Closed Basin has been brought to both local and national agenda, with its water scarcity and groundwater stress. In this paper, we adopt a participatory system dynamics approach for exploring the drivers of unsustainable groundwater use and to build a shared understanding on future sustainable pathways in Çumra, an administrative district within Konya Closed Basin, Turkey. Following 3 field visits and 2 participatory model building workshops, we built the model introduced in this paper, and we test multiple policy scenarios that have been suggested by the stakeholders, such as inter-basin water transfer, crop rotation, crop repricing, and irrigation limits.