Image Database Export Citations


Decentralisation and Natural Resource Management in Rural South Africa: Problems and Prospects

Show full item record

Type: Conference Paper
Author: Ntsebeza, Lungisile
Conference: The Commons in an Age of Globalisation, the Ninth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of Common Property
Location: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Conf. Date: June 17-21, 2002
Date: 2002
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/1345
Sector: General & Multiple Resources
Social Organization
Region: Africa
Subject(s): IASC
common pool resources
local governance and politics
resource management
community participation
institutional analysis
Abstract: "One of the aims of decentralization is to increase public participation in local-decision making. The claim is that public participation, coupled with locally accountable representatives with real public powers will increase efficiency and equity in the use of public resources (Agrawal and Ribot 1999). Since the advent of democracy in 1994, South Africa has embarked on its own version of decentralization in a range of areas. For example, the White Paper on Sustainable Forest Development in South Africa describes the category of 'community forestry' as 'implemented by, or with the participation of, communities.' (Department of Water Affairs and Forestry 1997:20). With regard to the environmental management policy, the National Environmental Management Act of 1998 advocates a strong role for civil society participation in environmental governance (see also Turner and Meer 1999:12). In this paper, the issue of decentralization and natural resource management will be interrogated primarily through a focus on local government reform and land administration. This focus illuminates problems that are on the horizon for other natural resources, such as forests, wildlife and fisheries, especially as these latter resources are to be managed through similar structures that are being constructed and contested in the local government and land policy arenas. Within this context, the role of traditional authorities (chiefs of various ranks) and municipal councillors will be assessed.... "The focus of this paper is on the institutional arrangements that have been put in place to give effect to decentralization and its impact on natural resource management in the rural areas of the old Transkei, South Africa. The paper will pay attention to the various actors who hold power over natural resources, the kinds of powers they hold, the degree of community participation and accountability relations and mechanisms of accountability to which these actors are subject. Of critical importance will be a discussion of the role of traditional authorities in post-1994 South Africa, particularly how they have responded current policies and laws. At the heart of the discussion will be an assessment of the relationship between theory and practice and implications for natural resource management."

Files in this item

Files Size Format View
ntsebezal290502.pdf 221.9Kb PDF View/Open

This item appears in the following document type(s)

Show full item record