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Rule Formation Process in Communal Forest Management: Cases in Yasothon Province, Northeast Thailand

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Ubukata, Fumikazu
Conference: Survival of the Commons: Mounting Challenges and New Realities, the Eleventh Conference of the International Association for the Study of Common Property
Location: Bali, Indonesia
Conf. Date: June 19-23, 2006
Date: 2006
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/323
Sector: Forestry
Region: East Asia
Subject(s): IASC
community forestry
collective action
economic development
Abstract: "During the last 20 years, theories regarding common property resource management had developed in many fields of research, particularly in economics and anthropology. There are a lot of disagreements between them, however, especially on how the community members come to form groups and take collective action to manage these resources. In fact, the importance of the anthropological approach seems increasing, as rural communities in many development countries are increasingly involved in the process of social, economic, and cultural globalization, or under the strong influences of external actors. So how the community members can develop managing their resources under such contemporary social settings? Taking the cases of 113 villages in K district, Yasothon province, northeast Thailand, this study tries to examine the rule formation processes in communal forest management. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected to examine the decisive factors of rule formation and to conceptualize the process of rule formation. The results suggested that, firstly, the induced institutional innovation theory, which insists the resource scarcity is the main driving force for the local collective action, could not solely apply to the study area. Secondly, different rule formation processes were observed according to the geographical and social conditions, and type of interactions between community members and external actors. This led to the different consequences and problems in managing the resources. I categorized these into four outstanding types of process. Each process seems to require different explanation, which varies from economic theory to anthropological understandings. In the study area, it is considered that the strong effect by the external actors after the 1990s altered and diversified the logic of collective action, and so did the situation of resource management."

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