Creating common spaces: Natural resource management in Fuuta Jalon, Guinea
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Programs and projects focusing on natural resource management (NRM) have become widespread throughout West Africa, affecting national and local land tenure policies and practices. Many of the current community-based NRM efforts in West Africa assume the existence of common property land resources. Application of a community-based approach to NRM posed significant problems in the Fuuta Jalon region of Guinea because land resources held as common property are practically non existent. Relying on applied research, this article analyzes the use of a contract mechanism at the project level to create common NRV spaces relies on widely accepted local tenure rules and land redistribution mechanisms. Support of existing tenure practices is a likely attribute of contractual solutions since one of the main objectives is to adapt existing practices to changing circumstances rather than to replace them entirely.