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Environment and Land Tenure in a Transitional Pastoral Economy: The Case of Mongolia

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Mearns, Robin
Date: 1992
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/3948
Sector: Land Tenure & Use
Global Commons
Subject(s): grazing
land tenure and use
indigenous institutions
Abstract: "Global environmental change and the problems of transition in formerly socialist economies are two of the most pressing concerns in contemporary world development. These twin concerns are more closely related than it might appear. In both cases, successful management of the process of change turns on the design, implementation and sequencing of policies appropriately tailored to suit the circumstances in question, rather than the adoption of simple blueprints. But there are also important lessons to be learnt from experience gained in different geographical contexts. For example, the lessons of 'structural adjustment' in low income African economies during the 1980s have much to offer Mongolia, the central Asian states of the CIS, and other formerly socialist developing countries. Similarly, better understanding of the role of customary institutional mechanisms in African dryland management, and of the ways development policies operate either to support or constrain them with more or less destructive social and environmental consequences, offers insights that are no less relevant to central Asian pastoral societies. This chapter examines a case in which the twin concerns of economic transition and environmental change are brought together, and focuses on the role of formal and informal institutional mechanisms that mediate between them in the domain of land tenure."

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