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Rangeland Collaboration: Effects of the Border Crisis on a Governance Network

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: York, Abigail M.; Schoon, Michael L.
Conference: Capturing the Complexity of the Commons, North American Regional Meeting of the International Association for the Study of the Commons
Location: Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
Conf. Date: Sep. 30-Oct. 2
Date: 2010
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10535/6554
Sector: Land Tenure & Use
Region: North America
Subject(s): collective action
rangelands
resource management
collaboration
governance and politics
environmental degradation
Abstract: "In the southern Arizona borderlands, natural resource managers come together to solve complex environmental issues associated with water, fire, threats to biodiversity, and exurbanization creating a diverse set of formal and informal institutional arrangements between public and private actors. Ranchers and range issues are central to governance in this system, yet ranchers and public range agencies do not operate in a vacuum, so we explore collaboration on range from a governance network perspective. We seek to understand how a challenging and potentially divisive issue affects collective action among interconnected managers and institutions. This natural resource community faces a contentious issue affecting daily life and management activities: the border crisis. We examine collaboratives and governance network’s ability to continue to deal with environmental problems in the face of four border issues: militarization, smuggling, increased migration, and construction of the border fence/wall and road. This study contributes to the collective action literature through its exploration of how natural resource management governance networks withstand complex challenges, such as the border. Border security places a heavy burden on public and private land mangers, especially ranchers, affecting a way of life and limiting managers’ ability to collectively act to deal with environmental issues, yet we also find innovative solutions and emergence of new collaboratives in the face of this challenge."

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