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Tenure and Access Rights as Constraints to Community Watershed Development in Orissa, India

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Kumar, Kundan; Kerr, John; Choudhury, Pranab
Conference: The Commons in an Age of Global Transition: Challenges, Risks and Opportunities, the Tenth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of Common Property
Location: Oaxaca, Mexico
Conf. Date: August 9-13
Date: 2004
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10535/1780
Sector: Land Tenure & Use
Water Resource & Irrigation
Region: Middle East & South Asia
Subject(s): IASC
watersheds
land tenure and use
access
community participation
Abstract: From introduction: "This paper examines the performance of watershed projects in hilly areas of Orissa, India, characterized by conflicts over land rights primarily between the Forest Department and local tribal communities. The study area is notable for the governments attempted use of mechanisms to reward land users in upper watersheds for adopting perennial vegetation that would provide various environmental services; this approach is virtually unknown in the rest of India. However, the approach has met limited success due to conflicts surrounding the status of Forest Department land and failure to appreciate existing systems of customary land tenure. The paper demonstrates the perverse outcomes that result when project interventions fail to appreciate these issues and discusses some approaches to resolve the problem."

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