Decentralisation, participation and accountability in Sahelian Forestry: Legal instruments of political-administrative control
MetadataShow full item record
Colonial relations of political administration are being reproduced in the current era of participation and decentralisation. In natural resource management, participation and decentralisation are promoted on the basis that they can increase equity, yield greater efficiency, benefit the environment and contribute to rural development. Reaping these benefits is predicated on (1) the devolution of some real powers over natural resources to local populations, and (2) the existence of locally accountable authorities to whom those powers can be devolved. However, a limited set of highly circumscribed powers are being devolved to locally accountable authorities, and most local authorities to whom powers are being devolved are systematically structured to be upwardly accountable to the central state, rather than downwardly accountable to local populations. Many of the new laws being passed in the name of participation and decentralisation administer rather than enfranchise. The article examines the historical legal underpinnings of the powers and accountability of state-backed rural authorities (chiefs and rural councils), the authorities through which current natural resource management projects in Burkina Faso and in Mali represent local populations, and the decisions being devolved to local bodies in new natural resource management efforts. Without reform local interventions risk reproducing the inequities of their centralised political--administrative context. Rather than pitting the state against society by depicting the state as a negative force and society and non-state institutions as positive--as is done in many decentralisation and participatory efforts--this article suggests that representation through local government can be the basis of general and enduring participation by society in public affairs.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Building Community Resilience and Supporting Vulnerable Populations: Social Networks and Community Capacity Mancini, Jay A. (Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA, 2009-06-23)
Racism in the Gay Community and Homophobia in the Black Community: Negotiating the Gay Black Male Experience Brown, Clarence Ezra (Virginia Tech, 2008-05-08)This research posed the question â How does racism in the gay community and homophobia in the Black community restrict gay Black maleâ s life chances and life opportunities?â Previous research has uncovered racist ...
Brossoie, Nancy Elizabeth (Virginia Tech, 2003-05-05)Many older adults are electing to age in place within their communities. Even though they may be frequent consumers of community programs and services, their role as contributors to community well-being should not be ...