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Institutions and common pool resources: a case study of the grazing land in the Matsheng Area, Kgalgadi District, Botswana
2004 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis is an institutional analysis of the grazing lands in Matsheng area, Kgalagadi District in Botswana and the purpose is to use the Institutional Analysis Development framework (IAD) in order to examine how the institutional arrangements affect the probability for cattle owners to successfully govern the grazing land. Grazing land is what Elinor Ostrom defines as a common pool resource and has been governed as a common property in Botswana. According to Garrett Hardin’s “The tragedy of the commons” this kind of resource and resource management are doomed to fail with the outcome of land degradation. Instead Hardin suggests that common property could be changed into either private or state owned property. This argument led to the implementation of the Tribal Grazing Land Policy in 1975. All land was zoned into three different areas: reserved land, commercial land, and communal land. Dividing the areas was assumed to relieve the grazing pressure in the communal lands. The government stressed that the traditional system of land tenure was structured in such a way that individuals lacked the incentives to conserve the common grazing land. The policy’s objectives were to stop degradation, promote economic equality and increase commercialization in the livestock industry. However, none of the policies objectives has been realized. Ostrom has a more optimistic view to common property and common pool resources and she believes that it is possible to overcome the “tragedy of the commons”. Ostrom had developed three sets of contextual variables that determine whether a resource will be used in a sustainable way or not. These three sets of variables: institutional arrangements, the physical attributes of the resource, and the attributes of the community are brought under the name “Institutional Analysis and Development Framework”, IAD. I have analyzed several factors by doing interviews with cattle owners in Hukuntsi and Lehututu and by using secondary data. I have found that the present resource management in Matsheng is not sustainable! The skewed income variance, the lack of indicators, and the ongoing degradation of water and land, are few factors that hinder cattle owners from investing in resource management. Also, the dual grazing right make few wealthy cattle owners benefit disproportionately which is maybe the greatest obstacle for a sustainable grazing management. Therefore, the government of Botswana needs to cancel the dual grazing right and help cattle owners to take good decisions by providing them information about the water and grazing condition.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Social Behaviour Law, Political science, institutions, common pool resources, grazing land, Matsheng, Kgalagadi, Botswana, cattle, livestock, land degradation, rural
Keyword [sv]
Samhälls-, beteendevetenskap, juridik
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-45604ISRN: LTU-SHU-EX--04/233--SELocal ID: 349d0e7c-20a5-4e6e-b367-e7ad034bbefdOAI: diva2:1018899
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 15 credits
Educational program
Political Science, master's level
Validerat; 20101217 (root)Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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