The production of contested landscapes: Enclosing the pastoral commons in Niger

Snorek, Julie, Moser, Linda and Renaud, Fabrice G., (2017). The production of contested landscapes: Enclosing the pastoral commons in Niger. Journal of Rural Studies, 51 125-140

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  • Sub-type Journal article
    Author Snorek, Julie
    Moser, Linda
    Renaud, Fabrice G.
    Title The production of contested landscapes: Enclosing the pastoral commons in Niger
    Appearing in Journal of Rural Studies
    Volume 51
    Publication Date 2017-04-01
    Place of Publication Amsterdam
    Publisher Elsevier Ltd.
    Start page 125
    End page 140
    Language eng
    Abstract Divergent adaptation to climate variability produces unequal adaptive capacities between user groups and contributes to a contested landscape. This article examines divergent adaptations in the context of land tenure shifts in the pastoral zone of Niger. The management of the pastoral commons is shifting from a commonly-shared to private regime as former pastoralists take up new livelihoods, such as irrigated gardening. A method combining political ecology and remote sensing is used to study social ecological system (SES) dynamics in order to demonstrate the relationship between divergent adaptation, water-based conflict, land tenure shifts and land use/land cover change. Examining pastoral and agro-pastoral users’ historical perceptions of land use and tenure change, results indicate that disputes over the access to and use of commonly shared natural resources are linked to increasing enclosures of ephemeral and permanent lakes in the pastoral zone of Niger. Remote sensing-derived information is used to identify and quantify the area and volume of enclosures around commonly shared water sources in the northern pastoral zone of Niger from 2003 to 2013. The study identifies the government-supported development of irrigated gardens in the pastoral zone as a divergent adaptation with its related conflict dynamics between user groups and highlights the land tenure shifts from a commonly to a privately managed regime. The findings have broader implications for the wider Sahel and provide recommendations as to how adaptation programs could be better designed and implemented in the pastoral system.
    Keyword Divergent adaptation
    Remote Sensing
    Common pool regimes
    Land-use land-cover (LULC)
    Agro-pastoralist
    Niger
    Copyright Holder Elsevier Ltd
    Copyright Year 2017
    Copyright type All rights reserved
    DOI 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2017.01.015
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    Created: Thu, 08 Jun 2017, 22:36:22 JST by Aarti Basnyat on behalf of UNU EHS