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Decentralization, Participation and Accountability in Sahelian Forestry: Legal Instruments of Political-Administrative Control

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dc.contributor.author Ribot, Jesse C. en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2009-07-31T14:55:07Z
dc.date.available 2009-07-31T14:55:07Z
dc.date.issued 1999 en_US
dc.date.submitted 2001-08-29 en_US
dc.date.submitted 2001-08-29 en_US
dc.identifier.uri https://hdl.handle.net/10535/2909
dc.description.abstract "Colonial relations of rural political administration are being reproduced in the current era of participation and decentralization. In natural resource management, participation and decentralization are promoted on the basis that they can increase rural equity, provide greater efficiency, benefit the environment, and contribute to rural development. Reaping these benefits is predicated on 1) the devolution of some real powers over natural resources to local populations, and 2) the existence of locally accountable authorities to whom these powers can be devolved. However, a limited set of highly circumscribed powers are being devolved to locally accountable authorities, and most local authorities to whom powers are being devolved are systematically structured to be upwardly accountable to the central state, rather than being downwardly accountable to local populations. Many of the new laws being written in the name of participation and decentralization administer rather than enfranchise. The paper examines historical legal underpinnings of the powers and accountability of state-backed rural authorities (chiefs and rural councils); the authorities through which current natural resource management projects in Burkina Faso and in Mali represent local populations; and the decisions being devolved to local bodies in new natural resource management efforts. Without reform local interventions risk reproducing the inequities of their centralized political-administrative context. Rather than pitting the State against society by depicting the State as a negative force and society and non-state institutions as positive--as is done in many decentralization and participatory efforts--this article suggests that representation through local government can be the basis for generalized and enduring participation of society in public affairs." en_US
dc.language English en_US
dc.publisher International African Institute en_US
dc.subject decentralization en_US
dc.subject forestry en_US
dc.subject political economy en_US
dc.subject natural resources en_US
dc.subject resource management en_US
dc.subject participatory management en_US
dc.subject justice en_US
dc.subject environment en_US
dc.subject equity en_US
dc.title Decentralization, Participation and Accountability in Sahelian Forestry: Legal Instruments of Political-Administrative Control en_US
dc.type Journal Article en_US
dc.type.published published en_US
dc.coverage.region Africa en_US
dc.subject.sector Forestry en_US
dc.subject.sector History en_US
dc.identifier.citationjournal Africa, Journal of the International African Institute en_US
dc.identifier.citationvolume 69 en_US
dc.identifier.citationnumber 1 en_US
dc.identifier.citationpubloc London, United Kingdom en_US
dc.submitter.email jesser@wri.org en_US

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