Conference Background

Background of “Asia Regional Biennial IASC Meeting”

Throughout Asia, degradation of natural resources is happening at a higher rate and is a primary environmental concern. Recent tragedies associated with climate change have clear footprints on the deforestation, land degradation and water course changing. Governments, NGOs, and academics have been searching for appropriate policy recommendations that will mitigate the trend of natural resource degradation While there has been a good amount of study and management prescriptions for natural either from national development point of view or from the community perspectives at local level but there are hardly any study that point towards the interrelationship among other resources and CPRs as mediated by institutional arrangement and what will have the implications for management of CPR in an integrated manner vis-a-vis poverty reduction. In our previous research, we have identified several anomalies and tried to explain these in terms of better management regimes for CPR of several Asian countries. But there are still several issues, like failure to comprehend and conceptualized social and ecological systems as couple systems that adapt, self-organize and is co-evolutionary in dynamics. The information obtained through these works tends to be fragmented and scattered making decision making incomplete as they do not reflect the entire scenario. These shared vision among diverse complexities that natural resource management has to offer needs to be fed in the governance and management arrangements for management guidelines for integrated management of natural resources and CPR as a whole.

Stimulated by rapid degradation of natural resources and the need of shared vision for integrated management of natural resources and CPR as a whole throughout Asia, the Asia Region Biennial IASC Meeting was held at Ostrom Center for the Advanced Study in Natural Resource Governance (OCEAN). This conference brought together leading scholars, researchers, policymakers, practitioners and social innovators to take stock of the developments in the interdisciplinary study of the Commons problems and related questions of natural resource governance. Based on the presentation, we intend to bring these issues of South and South East Asia forward for global audiences and policymakers.

Main Themes of Meeting

  • Community Forestry and Socio-Ecological Systems
  • Community Irrigation and Robustness Challenges
  • Climate Change, Natural Resources Dynamics and Land Use Challenges

Special Focus of Meeting

Specifically, the following issues were of interest to seek answers to:

  1. How can economic growth be prudent together with holding natural resources intact?

  2. How has decentralization of natural management rights affected the resource conditions, and how have concerns of gender and social inclusion been incorporated in the process?

  3. How can the sustainability of efforts to improve the productive capacity of CPR systems be assessed in the context of current debate on the effects of climate change and initiative and implementation of new programs such as PES and REDD+?

  4. How can multiple methods of information gathering and analysis (by multiple methods, we mean both triangulation of methods to get the true picture as well as the combination of socioeconomic methods with the biological science through a combination of micro-macro analytic methods such as remotely sensed data overtime verified by ground-truthing and additional GPS sample point verification process) on CPRs be integrated in the national natural resource policy guidelines and the results used by local managers and users of CPRs, government agencies and scholars?

  5. What are the effective polycentric policy approaches for governance and management of CPRs that are environmentally sustainable and gender balanced?