Commoning the Commons

This solution addresses weak governance of public and commonlands in India for forest dependent, agro-pastoralists and farming communities.

Problem Description

Widespread degradation of shared natural resources, coupled with weak governance negatively impacts about 1.2 billion people and contributes to poverty, conflict, corruption and limited economic growth. However, there is strong evidence that local communities have evolved various arrangements to manage shared resources as Common Property Regimes (or Commons). Most Commons seem to have been legislated out of existence, or were never codified, or eliminated by land reform. While debates on how land should be governed focus on putting the land under government control or under individual private property, there is need to strengthen common property to improve the ecosystems as well as the entitlements of local communities to sustain rural livelihoods.

Building Blocks

Contributed By

  • Jagdeesh Rao, Foundation for Ecological Security