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Household Characteristics and Common Property Resource Management: A Model for Households Dependency on Local Commons

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Adhikari, Bhim
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/10535/197
Sector: Forestry
Social Organization
Region: Middle East & South Asia
Subject(s): IASC
common pool resources
forest management--policy
community forestry
forest products
income distribution
resource management
Abstract: "In recent years, the relationship between socio-economic characteristics and dependency of households on forest resources has become a growing concern in issues of local level collective action. On the one hand, it has often been argued that poor people extract more resources from the commons due to their greater reliance on natural resources. On the other hand, it is claimed that compared to non-poor, the poor may depend more on the commons in relative terms, but in absolute terms their dependency is lower. In this study I advance this argument by formally modelling household production systems to explore how socio-economic characteristics influence household dependency on local commons in reference to community-based forest management in Nepal. The analysis is based on field data from 309 households from the mid-hills of the country. Econometric analyses suggest that household labour allocation decisions for forest product collection are dictated by various socio-economic and demographic variables. In general, it appears that household land and livestock holdings, gender, ethnicity and education of household head exert more influence on household labour allocation decisions for extraction and gathering activities than other factors. The results show that women are not the sole collectors of forest products as conventionally accepted. Based on this analysis, it can be concluded that poorer households are currently facing limited and restricted access to community forestry than relatively better off households. Policy measures that aim to reduce heterogeneity among user households along with non-timber forest products (NTFPs) oriented management regimes in community forestry help to increases income of the poorer households from the local commons."

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