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The Implications of Formal and Informal Institutions on the Conservation of On-Farm Trees:  An analysis from the Department of Mirriah, Republic of Niger.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

In light of an observed increase in vegetation cover on a broader scale in the West African Republic of Niger, this thesis presents two villages from the department of Mirriah whose inhabitants perceive a constant decline in bigger trees on farmland over the past decades. In order to understand this seemingly paradox, the study aims at exploring the factors that influence tree management by small-scale farmers in both villages. Based on a ten-week field study and following the Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) Framework, the paper thereby focuses on the interaction between customary land use systems and formal institutions, with resource property rights being at the centre of analysis. The examination of Niger’s environmental legislation reveals that legal provisions are at clear variance from customary resource management practices. By means of logistic regression, the study finds that land ownership increases the likelihood to plant trees, but does not influence farmers’ willingness to care for the resource. Yet, tree planting and conservation efforts are counteracted by current forest policy. The study concludes that the devolution of tree management and control rights from the central government to the examined village communities seems crucial if farmers are to sustain their resource stock.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
parkland, property rights, devolution, greening, Niger, Sahel, logistic regression, institutions, agro-forestry, customary land use
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-56079OAI: diva2:408943
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-04-06 Created: 2011-04-06 Last updated: 2011-04-06Bibliographically approved

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