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The Virtue of Conflict in Local Resource Governance: An Institutional Approach to the Study of Heterogeneous Preferences

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: van Laerhoven, Frank; Andersson, Krister P.
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/10535/724
Sector: Social Organization
General & Multiple Resources
Subject(s): IASC
conflict resolution
common pool resources
Abstract: "In this paper, we argue that the conventional study of conflict in common-pool resource (CPR) governance settings should look for more explicit ways to incorporate rules and rule-making procedures into their models. New Institutionalism has shown that individual preferences cannot be amalgamated into a coherent group preference in any simple, straightforward fashion. Efforts to articulate group preferences depend on the institutions chosen to reach compromise between individual opinions; these institutional arrangements can always be questioned and challenged. Rather than claiming that conflict must be solved at all costs, we argue that conflict, under some circumstances, may be necessary for the eventual emergence of a more stable set of institutions that are capable of managing conflicts and differences in opinion in a ways that are nondestructive for CPR use. We propose a research agenda that includes a focus on institutions and their role in both causing and mitigating conflict."

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