Accueil > Development and common pool resources management

KINT 4270 - Development and Common Pool Resources Management

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English

Pre-requisite

No specific pre-requisites are necessary for this course. Please note however that some very basic knowledge in economics and environment would be preferable so as to better understand concepts of actors' strategies, property rights and institutions as well as sustainable development. This course does not however require any background in mathematics and/or econometrics.

Course Description

Building on theory (political economy, new institutionalism with Nobel prize laureates Elinor Ostrom and Oliver E. Williamson) as well as empirical examples (case studies), this course aims at providing students with an understanding of local conflicts over land and common natural resources (fisheries, pastures, forests, wildlife, water, etc.) and the possible institutional mechanisms which potentially lead to sustainable resource management, development and poverty alleviation at the local level. Most rural actors use natural resources (NR) in order generate revenues (create a rent) and sustain their family's livelihoods (session 1: introduction). As a result, when analysing the link between rural development, rural poverty alleviation and conservation of natural resources, one needs to precisely understand the whole process that goes from the use (extraction/harvesting) of natural resources to the actual generation and distribution of the associated income. We call this process the 'resources-activities-actors-revenues' sequence (session 2): first, rural areas are endowed with various natural assets such as arable lands, forests, fishing grounds, grazing lands, wildlife and valuable landscapes; second, economic activities in rural areas are production processes that make use of those natural resources. Those activities are: agriculture (subsistence and/or cash crops), fishing, collecting timber and non-timber forest products, stock farming and rearing, subsistence and commercial hunting, trophy sport hunting (consumptive tourism), non-consumptive (photographic) tourism, etc.; third, different types of actors compete or cooperate to operate those activities. Those groups are: local communities, the public sector with government agencies and para-statal companies, the private sector, donors and NGOs etc.; finally fourth, economic NR-based activities result in an output (whether a good or a service) and thus generate revenues and/or means of subsistence which are captured and (re)distributed among actors. Several important issues are to be analysed along this sequence : When generating income from various activities, all actors compete against each other for common natural resources. If these resources are not excludable (everyone can easily and freely use the resource) and rival (the use of a NR by my neighbours reduces the possible use of the same NR by myself), i.e. these NR are common-pool resources (CPR), and competition is not regulated, finite NR could be well totally depleted. This is the ‘resource utilization problem' (session 2), which will be analysed in greater details in this course through the analysis of the necessary emergence of institutions, in particular property rights, whether private, public or common (sessions 3 to 5). When operating economic activities in rural areas, each actor can separately operate and capture the whole revenue; or different actors can combine their skills and assets and enter into partnerships. The question is precisely to analyse how to structure and organize these actors so that economic activities would generate the more rural income. This is the 'efficiency problem', which will be analysed when dealing with the question of governance structures (sessions 6-11). Nevertheless, analysing the efficiency problem is not enough. Once revenues have been generated from NR-based activities, those rents have to be captured and distributed among actors that have contributed partly or fully to the production process (whether they hold financial, human or natural assets or are employed, etc.). This is 'the redistribution problem'. Indeed, poverty alleviation and conservation of environment (resource utilization) are highly depending on a fair distribution of income among users (all sessions from session 3). This course will analyse these issues of resource allocation, efficiency and income distribution in CPR institutions in several geographical contexts. Objective of the course : building on theory (political economy, new institutionalism with Nobel prize laureates Elinor Ostrom and Oliver E. Williamson) as well as empirical examples (cases studies), this course aims at providing students with an understanding of local conflicts over land and common natural resources (fisheries, pastures, forests, wildlife, etc.) and the possible institutional mechanisms which potentially lead to sustainable resource management and poverty alleviation at the local level.

Teachers

LAPEYRE, Renaud (Research Fellow (PhD))

Pedagogical format

This lecture course will simultaneously build on economic theory and scientific articles, always illustrated by empirical case-studies (from grey or scientific literature). PowerPoint presentations and short videos (when possible) will be displayed for illustrating the class. Scientific articles will be read and discussed.

Course validation

Grading of students will be undertaken based on: - A collective oral presentation (15 mn max) (groups of 3 to max 4 students) on subjects and empirical case studies proposed by the students (with support by the professor) and related to specific sessions of the course (e.g. the CAMPFIRE project in Zimbabwe, fisheries in Madagascar, etc.), 40% (8 points) ; - An individual dissertation on a theoretical or empirical subject chosen by the student together with the professor (length: from min 15,000 signs (approx. 5/6 pages) to max. 20,000 signs, spaces not included, footnotes included, references not included), 45% (9 points) ; - Student participation, 15% (3 points).

Workload

This course will simultaneously build on theory, scientific articles and empirical case studies. For each session, students will be asked to read one or two scientific articles (theory or case-study); a short oral presentation will also be required (see 'grading & assessment' above).

Required reading

  • Ostrom, E. (1990), Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action, Cambridge University Press, p. 280
  • Platteau, J.P. (2003), « Droits de propriété et gestion efficace des ressources naturelles », Les Séminaires de l‘Iddri, n° 10, Institut du développement durable et des relations internationales, Paris
  • Williamson, O.E. (2000), “The New Institutional Economics: Taking Stock, Looking Ahead”, Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 38, pp. 595-613