Rural System's

Developing a Robust System
analysis for a long-lasting Rural System


The following text was prepared by Bob Giles, September 15, 2006, in seeking ways to design and develop a robust socio-economic and socio-ecological system. It emerges from reading DESIGN PRINCIPLES FOR ROBUSTNESS OF INSTITUTIONS IN SOCIAL-ECOLOGICAL SYSTEMS 2003 by J. Marty Anderies,Marco A. Janssen, and Elinor Ostrom

Source

The suggested design principles orginally developed for robust common-pool resource institutions for for more general social-ecological systems. They addresses" ... systems where individuals have self-consciously invested resources in some type of physical and institutional infrastructure that affects the way the system functions over time in coping with diverse external disturbances and internal problems." Figure 1: A conceptual Model of a Social-Ecological System ________________________________________ Page 4 4 Table 1: Entities Involved in Social-Ecological Systems Uncertainty

    By robustness of a system, we mean "the maintenance of some desired system characteristics despite fluctuations in the behavior of its component parts or its environment"

    Table 2: Linkages Involved in Social-Ecological System

    (1) Between Resource and Resource Users Availability of water at time of need/availability of fish Too much or too little water / too many of uneconomic fish - too few of valued fish Voting for providers Indeterminacy / lack of participation Contributing resources Free riding Recommending policies Rent seeking

    (2) Between users and public infrastructure providers Monitoring performance of providers Lack of information/ free riding Building initial structure Over- or under-invest Regular maintenance Shirking

    (3) Between public infrastructure providers and public infrastructure Monitoring and enforcing rules Cost / corruption

    (4) Between public infrastructure and resource Impact of infrastructure on the resource level Ineffective

    (5) Between public infrastructure and resource dynamics Impact of infrastructure on the feedback structure of the resource-harvest dynamics Ineffective, unintended consequences

    (6) Between resource users and public infrastructure Coproduction of infrastructure itself, maintenance of works, monitoring and sanctioning No incentives / free riding

    (7) External forces on resource Severe weather, earthquake, landslide Destroys resource and infrastructure

    (8) External forces on resource users Major changes in political system, economic prices, new roads, and infrastructure Conflict, uncertainty, out- migration, greatly increased demand


    Robust systems robust can be characterized as meeting a large number of the design principles listed below:

    Design Principles Based on Ostrom (1990: 90)for Long-Enduring Institutions for Governing Sustainable Resources 1. Clearly Defined Boundaries The boundaries of the resource system (e.g., irrigation system or fishery) and the individuals or households with rights to harvest resource units are clearly defined. helps to identify who should receive benefits and pay costs. If these are not well defined, resource users are less willing to trust one another as they never know when strangers may take advantage of the reciprocity the resource users have built up over time to overexploit the resource. 2. Proportional Equivalence between Benefits and Costs Rules specifying the amount of resource products that a user is allocated are related to local conditions and to rules requiring labor, materials, and/or money inputs. Assigning a rough proportionality between the benefits a resource user obtains and the costs the user contributes to the public infrastructure provider for the public infrastructure 3. Collective-Choice Arrangements Most individuals affected by harvesting and protection rules are included in the group who can modify these rules. Decisions by local users to establish harvesting and protection rules (Principle 3) enable those with the most information and stake in a system to have a major voice in regulating use. Further, rules that most of the resource users themselves establish are better known, understood, and perceived as being legitimate. 4. Monitoring Monitors, who actively audit bio-physical conditions and user behavior, are at least partially accountable to the users and/or are the users themselves. 5. Graduated Sanctions Users who violate rules-in-use are likely to receive graduated sanctions (depending on the seriousness and context of the offense) from other users, from officials accountable to these users, or from both. Graduated sanctions preserve a sense of fairness by allowing flexible punishment when there is disagreement about rule infractions. Without these mechanisms the incentives to overharvest and free ride may again dominate strategic behavior. 6. Conflict-Resolution Mechanisms Users and their officials have rapid access to low-cost, local arenas to resolve conflict among users or between users and officials. 7. Minimal Recognition of Rights to Organize The rights of users to devise their own institutions are not challenged by external governmental authorities, and users have long-term tenure rights to the resource. Recognizing the formal rights of users to do the above prevents those who want to evade local systems from claiming a lack of legitimacy. In addition, nesting a set of local institutions into a broader network of medium- to larger-scale institutions helps to ensure that larger-scale problems are addressed as well as those that are smaller. Institutions that have failed to sustain resources tend to be characterized by very few of these design principles, and those that are characterized by some, but not most, of the principles are fragile. For resources that are parts of larger systems: 8. Nested Enterprises Appropriation, provision, monitoring, enforcement, conflict resolution, and governance activities are organized in multiple layers of nested enterprises. Potential additional design principles need to be defined for the ability of resource users to express their demand to public infrastructure, knowledge transfer between resource users and public infrastructure providers, accountability of investments by public infrastructure, and effects of public infrastructure on resource.

    List based on Ostrom (1990: 90).

    Literature Cited Acheson, J.M. 1988. The Lobster Gangs of Maine. University Press of New England, Hanover, NH, USA. Acheson, J.M. 2003. Capturing the Commons: Devising Institutions to Manage the Maine Lobster Industry. University Press of New England, Lebanon, NH, USA. Anderies, J.M. 2002. The Transition from Local to Global Dynamics: A Proposed Framework for Agent-Based Thinking in Socio-Ecological Systems. Pages 13-34 in M.A. Janssen, editor. Complexity and Ecosystem Management: The Theory and Practice of Multi-Agent Systems. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK. Anderies, J.M. 2003. Economic Development, Demographics, and Renewable Resources: A Dynamical Systems Approach. Environment and Development Economics 8(2):219-246. Arrow, K.J. 1951. Social Choice and Individual Values. Yale University Press, New Haven, CT, USA. Baker, M. Forthcoming. Communities, Networks, and the State. Continuity and Change among the Kuhl Irrigation Systems of the Western Himalaya. Bayman, J.M. 2001. The Hohokam of Southwest North America. Journal of World Prehistory 15(3):257-311. Berkes, F., C. Folke, and J. Colding, editors. 1998. Linking Social and Ecological Systems: Management Practices and Social Mechanisms for Building Resilience. Cambridge University Press, New York, USA. Blomquist, W. 1992. Dividing the Waters: Governing Groundwater in Southern California. ICS Press, San Francisco, CA, USA. Carlson, J.M., and J. Doyle. 2002. Complexity and Robustness. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 99 (suppl. 1): 2538-45. Clark, C.W. 1990. Mathematical Bioeconomics. 2 nd ed. Wiley, New York, USA. Costanza, R., B.S. Low, E. Ostrom, and J. Wilson, editors. 2001. Institutions, Ecosystems, and Sustainability. Lewis Publishers, New York, USA. Coward, E.W., Jr. 1979. Principles of Social Organization in an Indigenous Irrigation System. Human Organization 38(1) (Spring): 28-36. Coward, E.W., Jr., editor. 1980. Irrigation and Agricultural Development in Asia: Perspectives from the Social Sciences. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, USA. De Moore, M., L. Shaw-Taylor, and P. Warde, editors. 2002. The Management of Common Land in Northwest Europe, c. 1500-1850. BREPOLS publishers, Belgium. Evans, P., editor. 1997. State-Society Synergy: Government and Social Capital in Development. University of California, Berkeley, USA. Finlayson, A.C., and B. McCay. 1998. Crossing the Threshold of Ecosystem Resilience: The Commercial Extinction of Northern Cod. Pages 311-337 in F. Berkes, C. Folke, and J. Colding, editors. Linking Social and Ecological Systems: Management Practices and Social Mechanisms for Building Resilience. Cambridge University Press, New York, USA. Glantz M.H., editor. 1999. Creeping Environmental Problems and Sustainable Development in the Aral Sea Basin. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. Gordon, H.S. 1954. The Economic Theory of a Common Property Resource: The Fishery. Journal of Political Economy 62 (April): 124-42. Hardin, G. 1968. The Tragedy of the Commons. Science 162 (Dec.): 1243-48. Holling, C.S. 1986. The Resilience of Terrestrial Ecosystems: Local Surprise and Global Change. Pages 292-317 in W.C. Clark and R.E. Munn, editors. Sustainable Development of the Biosphere. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. Janssen, M.A. 2002. Changing the Rules of the Game: Lessons from Immunology and Linguistics for Self-Organization of Institutions. Pages 35-47 in M.A. Janssen, editor. Complexity and Ecosystem Management: The Theory and Practice of Multi-Agent Systems. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK. Kaijser, A. 2002. System Building from Below: Institutional Change in Dutch Water Control Systems. Technology and Culture 43(3):521-48. Laitos, R., et al. 1986. Rapid Appraisal of Nepal Irrigation Systems. Water Management Synthesis Rep. No. 43. Fort Collins: Colorado State University. Lam, W.F. 1996. Institutional Design of Public Agencies and Coproduction: A Study of Irrigation Associations in Taiwan. World Development 24(6):1039-54. Lam, W.F. 1998. Governing Irrigation Systems in Nepal: Institutions, Infrastructure, and Collective Action. ICS Press, Oakland, CA. Lam, W.F. 2003. Reforming Taiwan's Irrigation Associations: Getting the Nesting of Institutions Right. in G. Shivakoti, et al., Asian Irrigation in Transition: Responding to Challenges. In Press. Lansing, J.S. 1991. Priests and Programmers: Technologies of Power in the Engineered Landscape of Bali. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, USA. Lebel, L., N.H. Tri, A. Saengnoree, S. Pasong, U. Buatama, and L.K. Thoa. 2002. Industrial Transformation and Shrimp Aquaculture in Thailand and Vietnam: Pathways to Ecological, Social, and Economic Sustainability? Ambio 31(4):311-22. Levine, G. 1977. Management Components in Irrigation System Design and Operation. Agricultural Administration 4:37-48. Lipe, W.D. 1995. The Depopulation of the Northern San Juan: Conditions in the Turbulent 1200s. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 14(2):143-69. Maass, A., and R.L. Anderson. 1986. . . . and the Desert Shall Rejoice: Conflict, Growth, and Justice in Arid Environments. R.E. Krieger, Malabar, FL, USA Malm, T. 2001. The Tragedy of the Commoners: The Decline of the Customary Marine Tenure System of Tonga. SPC Traditional Marine Resource Management and Knowledge Information Bulletin 13:3-13. Martin, E.G. 1986. Resource Mobilization, Water Allocation, and Farmer Organization in Hill Irrigation Systems in Nepal. Ph.D. thesis, Cornell University. Martin, E.G., and R. Yoder. 1983. The Chherlung Thulo Kulo: A Case Study of a Farmer- Managed Irrigation Systems. Pages 203-217 in Water Management in Nepal: Proceedings of the Seminar on Water Management Issues, July 31-Aug. 2, Kathmandu, Nepal: Ministry of Agriculture, Agric. Projects Serv. Ctr., Agric. Dev. Council. McHugh, J.L. 1972. Jeffersonian Democracy and the Fisheries. in B.J. Rothschild, editor. World Fisheries Policy: Multidisciplinary Views. University of Washington Press, Seattle, USA. McKelvey, R.D. 1976. Intransitivities in Multidimensional Voting Models and Some Implications for Agenda Control. Journal of Economic Theory 12:472-82. McKelvey, R.D. 1979. General Conditions for Voting Intransitivities in Formal Voting Models. Econometrica 47:1085-111. Mills, B.J. 2002. Recent Research on Chaco: Changing Views on Economy, Ritual, and Society. Journal of Archaeological Research 10(1):65-117. Moore, M. 1989. The Fruits and Fallacies of Neoliberalism: The Case of Irrigation Policy. World Politics 17(1):733-50. Mwangi, E. 2003. Institutional Change and Politics: The Transformation of Property Rights in Kenya's Maasailand. Ph.D. diss., Indiana University. National Research Council. 2002. The Drama of the Commons. Edited by E. Ostrom, T. Dietz, N. Dolsak, P. Stern, S. Stonich, and E. Weber (Committee on the Human Dimensions of Global Change). National Academy Press, Washington, D.C, USA. Netting, R.McC. 1976. What Alpine Peasants Have in Common: Observations on Communal Tenure in a Swiss Village. Human Ecology 4:135-46. Netting, R.McC. 1982. Territory, Property, and Tenure. Pages 446-501 in R.McC. Adams, N. J. Smelser, and D. J. Treiman, editors. Behavioral and Social Science Research: A National Resource. National Academy Press, Washington D.C., USA. Olson, M. 1993. Dictatorship, Democracy, & Development. American Political Science Review 87(3):567-76. Ostrom, E. 1990. Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Cambridge University Press, New York, USA. Ostrom, E. 1992. Crafting Institutions for Self-Governing Irrigation Systems. ICS Press. San Francisco, CA, USA. Ostrom, E. 1998. A Behavioral Approach to the Rational Choice Theory of Collective Action. American Political Science Review. 92 (1) (March): 1-22. Ostrom, E., and T.K. Ahn, editors. 2003. Foundations of Social Capital. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK. Ostrom, E., R. Gardner, and J. Walker. 1994. Rules, Games, and Common-Pool Resources. University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, USA. Rackham, O. 1988. The Last Forest: The Fascinating Account of Britain's Most Ancient Forest, Ecology and Institutions of the Last Remaining Royal Forest in England. J.D. Dent, London, UK. Shepsle, K.A. 1979. Institutional Arrangements and Equilibrium in Multidimensional Voting Models. American Journal of Political Science 23:27-59. Shepsle, K.A. 1989. Studying Institutions: Some Lessons from the Rational Choice Approach. Journal of Theoretical Politics 1:131-49. Siy, R.Y., Jr. 1982. Community Resource Management: Lessons from the Zanjera. University of the Philippines Press, Quezon City, Philippines. Smith, R.T. 1988. Trading Water: An Economic and Legal Framework for Water Marketing. Council of State Policy and Planning Agencies, Washington, D.C., USA. Tainter, J.A. 1988. The Collapse of Complex Societies. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. Tang, S.Y. 1992. Institutions and Collective Action: Self-Governance in Irrigation. ICS Press, San Francisco, CA, USA. Tietenberg, T. 2002. The Tradable Permits Approach to Protecting the Commons: What Have We Learned? Pages 197-232 in National Research Council, E. Ostrom, T. Dietz, N. Dolsak, P. Stern, S. Stonich, and E. Weber, editors (Committee on the Human Dimensions of Global Change). The Drama of the Commons. National Academy Press, Washington D.C., USA. Wade, R. 1995. The Ecological Basis of Irrigation Institutions: East and South Asia. World Development 23(12):2041-49. Webb, P. 1991. When Projects Collapse: Irrigation Failure in the Gambia from a Household Perspective. Journal of International Development 3(4):339-53. Westbroek, P. 2002. Back to Nature? The Punctuated History of a Natural Monument. Pages 379-393 in B. de Vries and J. Goudsblom, editors. Mappae Mundi: Humans and Their Habitats in a Long-Term Socio-Ecological Perspective- Myths, Maps and Models. Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

    Perhaps you will share ideas with me about some of the topic(s) above .

    Top

    Home
    Rural System
    Glossary
    Robert H. Giles, Jr.
    September 15, 2006