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Collective Action to Recognize Commons and to Adopt Policies at Multiple Government Levels

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Roldan, A. M.
Conference: Governing Shared Resources: Connecting Local Experience to Global Challenges, the Twelfth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of Commons
Location: Cheltenham, England
Conf. Date: July 14-18, 2008
Date: 2008
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/488
Sector: Social Organization
Region: South America
Subject(s): collective action
governance and politics
Abstract: "Any successful attempt at poverty alleviation requires the involvement of all stakeholders in the process. Environmental goods and services are common goods that require common rules to minimize loss. To improve communities' livelihoods and promote conservation, WWF Colombia has developed an innovative empowerment process with the aim of mobilizing organizations and communities to collective action. The process involves a range of actors and aims to encourage them to sign concrete commitments. "This process, co-ordinated by WWF, is known as the Conversatorio, a space to resolve conflict over common goods related to livelihoods, governance and conservation. It is a call for dialogue and negotiation. The conversatorio process requires intervention at three levels. At the local level, the process requires training, and facilitated negotiation and conflict management amongst interested parties to encourage equitable resource use practices to emerge and promote access to information and participation on decision making. The second and third levels are the regional and national level. Sound governance systems and policy frameworks are needed to promote and increase access to social services. "The conversatorio aims to promote a social change when individuals or communities recognize their problems and wants to defend their rights against privatization of commons. WWF Colombia had been replicating this methodology of work with conversatorios in 4 different places and communities. More than 60 agreements have been signed among communities, institutions from local, regional and national level, and in some cases with private companies which are compromising to defend commons and redistribute benefits towards a more equitable access and distribution. This presentation explores and analyze lessons learned of these collective action as mechanisms to increase management of commons and how governments recognize them implicating adoption of new policies at different scales."

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