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Food and Fashion: Water Management and Collective Action among Irrigation Farmers and Textile Industrialists in South India
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Department of Water and Environmental Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
1996 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In recent years, much ofthe political debate in the West, East aud South has focused on the decentralization of responsibilities from the state to private enterprises and NGOs. But what potential is there for local communities to create their own govenlance structures able to deal with issues up till recently seen as the responsibility of the state? In this thesis, answer to this question is sought by analyzing two case studies from the semi-arid Coimbatore-region in South India from an institutionai perspective. One case concerns the efforts to involve farmers in irrigation water management in the Lower Bhavani Project, while the other focuses on the pressure on textile industrialists in Tirupur city to collectively treat their polluted effluent water.

In both cases, the new distribution ofresponsibilities required that groups ofwater users would succeed in establishing new entities for collective action among themselves strong enough to prevent free-riding on a massive scale. Overcoming three main obstacles proved crucial in this process; meeting coordination costs, re-defining the notion of free-riding among resource users, and meeting motivation costs. Factors both within and outsicte the loeal community affected the degree ofsuccess.

The distribution and lise of economic, moral and physical power between various actors and the interconnectedness between local and external institutions proved crucial for the establishrnent oflocal govemance stmctures. Moreover, the historical relation between the respective user group and the state has to a large extent affected the goals and strategies oflocal entities of eolleetive action.

Clearly, resource management problems at localleve1 can not be solved by simply decentralizing responsibilities from the state to groups ofresource users. Rather, the state could playan important role by initiating, supporting and directing slich local entities of collective action.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press , 1996. , 220 p.
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 148
National Category
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-54550ISBN: 91-7871-850-3 (Print)OAI: diva2:305279
Public defence
1996-11-22, Elysion, Hus T, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:00 (English)
Available from: 2010-03-23 Created: 2010-03-23 Last updated: 2015-11-04Bibliographically approved

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Blomqvist (Jonsson), Anna
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