Natural resource management institution building in the decentralizing context of West Africa: the SANREM CRSP approach


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Blacksburg, Va.: SANREM CRSP WA


A far-reaching restructuring is beginning to take place in West Africa. There is general recognition in the region that central governments are poorly placed to make many decisions appropriate for local levels. Particularly in areas of agriculture and natural resource management (NRM), local populations are being asked to take leadership in deciding appropriate land uses and ownership/usufruct of resources. The continuing and accelerating degradation of the natural resource base and changes in the socioeconomic environment of the region has added urgency to decentralization strategies. However, the current policy of decentralization across West Africa has become largely a matter of deconcentration. Although village-level (terroir) management has demonstrated significant success in community-based NRM, authority and resources resulting from decentralization laws do not reach this level. This paper describes the SANREM CRSP s attempt to organize and support a provincial-level NRM advisory board and orient technical interventions by providing training in Holistic Management.



Drought, Leadership development, Land tenure, Community participation, Empowerment, Decentralization, Pastoralism, Natural resource management, Adoption of innovations, Holistic management training, Socioeconomic changes, Natural resource degradation, Village level management, Advisory board, Technical interventions, Ecosystem Farm/Enterprise Scale Governance


SANREM CRSP WA Working Paper no. 01-02 Paper prepared for the Institutional Development Theme Session of the IFSA Symposium, Santiago, Chile, November 2000