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Accueil du site → Master → Pays Bas → Devolving resources and power in a context of land and water reform : organising practices, resource transfers and the establishment of a WUA in the Little Thukela catchment, South Africa

Wageningen University (2010)

Devolving resources and power in a context of land and water reform : organising practices, resource transfers and the establishment of a WUA in the Little Thukela catchment, South Africa

Méndez Barrientos, L.E.

Titre : Devolving resources and power in a context of land and water reform : organising practices, resource transfers and the establishment of a WUA in the Little Thukela catchment, South Africa

Auteur : Méndez Barrientos, L.E.

Université de soutenance : Wageningen University

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2010

Résumé
A significant international drive for comprehensive reforms of the institutional framework for the management of natural resources, with an emphasis on devolving power and decentralizing government decision making, has been at the core of development policies in the last two decades. The South African water and land reforms show that institutional and resource devolutions are highly complex and conditioned by contradictory economic interests. This MSc thesis research focused on identifying the challenges and difficulties in the creation of inclusive water institutions for the decentralized and equitable management of water in the Little Thukela catchment. The research focused on the main actors of the recently established Water User Association (WUA) : (white) commercial farmers and two (black Africans) communities – Potshini and Amaswazi – to understand how land and water reform has been addressed, managed, circumvented, and/or delayed. Studying both sides as well as land and water reform implementation processes allowed a better understanding of the opportunities, constraints and the adequacy of the present institutional decentralization processes in the catchment. The thesis concludes that in rural communities, new hybrid institutional arrangements to manage devolved land and water resources are complex, ambiguous, conflictive and insufficient. Transfers of land and water resources have not yet transformed the livelihoods of historically disadvantaged individuals (HDIs) nor their participation in the WUA, which is dominated by commercial farmers. In short : the nature of water reform that depends on land reform and on the institutional structures for its implementation faces complex challenges that cannot be solved just by devolving resources and/or decentralizing government decision making.

Mots clés : water management / land reform / resource management / water allocation / water resources / decentralization / social participation / institutions / decision making / rural communities / rural development / south africa

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Page publiée le 28 février 2015, mise à jour le 17 octobre 2018