Bryan Randolph Bruns

Independent Consultant

Improving participation in irrigation, water governance, and institutional development.

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Countries of Expertise

Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Philippines, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Tajikistan, Yemen, Egypt, Nigeria, Malawi, and Ghana.

world map


Ford Foundation, World Bank, International Water Management Institute, International Food Policy Research Institute, United States Agency for International Development, Asian Development Bank, World Wildlife Fund, CARE, Oxfam-America, and United Nations agencies.

Ford Foundation logo
World Bank logo
International Water Management Institute, logo
International Food Policy Research Institute logo
United States Agency for International Development logo
Asian Development Bank logo
World Wildlife Fund logo
CARE logo
Oxfam-America logo
United Nations Agencies logo


Cornell University logo

Ph.D. Sociology of Development, Cornell University.
Minor Fields: Agricultural Economics, Southeast Asian Studies

M.S. Sociology of Development, Cornell University.

Beloit College logo

B.A. Major in Anthropology, Beloit College.

Training & Fellowships

Fulbright logo

Fulbright Research Award. Thailand. 1985-1986.

International Association for Public Participation logo

Certificate in Public Participation. International Association for Public Participation. 2003.

Indiana University Bloomington logo

Visiting Scholar, Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, Indiana University Bloomington. 2009-2010.

Professional Memberships

International Association for the Study of Commons logo

Society for Applied Anthropology logo


Selected Publications

Practicing Polycentric Governance

Chapter 11 pp. 237-255 in Governing Complexity: Analyzing and Applying Polycentricity. Edited by Andreas Thiel, William A. Blomquist, Dustin E. Garrick. Cambridge University Press. 2019.

Practicing Polycentric Governance book cover

Water Rights Reform: Lessons for Institutional Design

Edited by Bryan Bruns, Claudia Ringler, and Ruth Meinzen-Dick. Washington, D.C.: International Food Policy Research Institute. 2005.

Water Rights Reform: Lessons for Institutional Design book cover

Negotiating Water Rights.

Edited by Bryan Bruns and Ruth Meinzen-Dick. London: Intermediate Technology Publications. New Delhi: Vistaar. 2000.

Negotiating Water Rights. book cover