What “community” means for farmer adoption of conservation practices: Some logic and evidence.

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Published on November 14, 2008

Author: ruralpracticechange

Source: slideshare.net

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by: Graham Marshall
Full details see: http://www.ruralpracticechange.org/

What does “community” mean for farmer adoption of conservation practices? Some logic and evidence Graham Marshall Institute for Rural Futures, Uni. of New England

 

“ We are trying to encourage a process of self-help … Some day the local community has to pick up all this.” - Commonwealth Dep’t Primary Industries & Energy, 1989.

“ We are trying to encourage a process of self-help … Some day the local community has to pick up all this.”

- Commonwealth Dep’t Primary Industries & Energy, 1989.

“ A strong feeling of ownership over the NRM planning process will increase motivation and likelihood that the outcomes identified in the regional integrated NRM plans are achieved.” - National NRM Capacity Building Framework, 2002

“ A strong feeling of ownership over the NRM planning process will increase motivation and likelihood that the outcomes identified in the regional integrated NRM plans are achieved.”

- National NRM Capacity Building Framework, 2002

Key points The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn how to address the “Samaritan’s Dilemma” that faces us in helping farmers’ self-help Targets, program logic, and M & E need, at all levels, to change as we learn.

The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves

We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn how to address the “Samaritan’s Dilemma” that faces us in helping farmers’ self-help

Targets, program logic, and M & E need, at all levels, to change as we learn.

Origins and evolution of rural CBNRM in Australia Prior approaches to helping farmers conserve natural resources fostered dependency NRM programs seek to help people manage their resource problems Community-based NRM programs seek to help people to help themselves

Prior approaches to helping farmers conserve natural resources fostered dependency

NRM programs seek to help people manage their resource problems

Community-based NRM programs seek to help people to help themselves

CBNRM soon became understood mainly through the lens of “extension thinking” Rural extension was the dominant social-scientific tradition for agricultural issues Governments concerned that farmers lacked awareness, knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to address NRM issues Political reasons for CBNRM focusing “community” programs on extension

CBNRM soon became understood mainly through the lens of “extension thinking”

Rural extension was the dominant social-scientific tradition for agricultural issues

Governments concerned that farmers lacked awareness, knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to address NRM issues

Political reasons for CBNRM focusing “community” programs on extension

Politicians/officials attracted by lure of CBNRM stretching funds further by ‘kick starting’ local voluntarism Ongoing financial support comes to be accepted, but emphasis on self-help persists

Politicians/officials attracted by lure of CBNRM stretching funds further by ‘kick starting’ local voluntarism

Ongoing financial support comes to be accepted, but emphasis on self-help persists

The Samaritan’s Dilemma

“ The paradox of supplying help to self-help is the fundamental conundrum of all helping relationships. Most external help actually overrides or undercuts the budding capacity for self-help and thus ends up being unhelpful”. - David Ellerman, 2007.

“ The paradox of supplying help to self-help is the fundamental conundrum of all helping relationships. Most external help actually overrides or undercuts the budding capacity for self-help and thus ends up being unhelpful”.

- David Ellerman, 2007.

1978 ~ James Buchanan developed a game-theory model of this paradox called the “Samaritan’s Dilemma” Self-interest of helper propels unconditional help, thus weakening self-help compulsion to see problems solved empire-building, turf protection, “getting money out the door” scepticism about recipient capacities for self-help The helper needs “strategic courage” but Buchanan felt increasing wealth had made “soft options” too hard to resist

1978 ~ James Buchanan developed a game-theory model of this paradox called the “Samaritan’s Dilemma”

Self-interest of helper propels unconditional help, thus weakening self-help

compulsion to see problems solved

empire-building, turf protection, “getting money out the door”

scepticism about recipient capacities for self-help

The helper needs “strategic courage”

but Buchanan felt increasing wealth had made “soft options” too hard to resist

1979 ~ The neo-liberal “revolution” begins (with Thatcherism) Strong on strategic courage, but weak on theory Committed to smaller government and reciprocity Focus on market (and market-like) solutions Purchaser-provider arrangements embraced Reciprocity to be enforced by rigorous accountability measures

1979 ~ The neo-liberal “revolution” begins (with Thatcherism)

Strong on strategic courage, but weak on theory

Committed to smaller government and reciprocity

Focus on market (and market-like) solutions

Purchaser-provider arrangements embraced

Reciprocity to be enforced by rigorous accountability measures

Helping self-help under regional NRM delivery

Regional delivery model a neo-liberal exercise in “new public management” Stringent financial accountability measures follow frustrations with “cost shifting” But coercing reciprocity is costly Limited resources to monitor compliance with conditions attached to help Difficult to establish the “without help scenario”

Regional delivery model a neo-liberal exercise in “new public management”

Stringent financial accountability measures follow frustrations with “cost shifting”

But coercing reciprocity is costly

Limited resources to monitor compliance with conditions attached to help

Difficult to establish the “without help scenario”

Most farmer lapses in reciprocating help may be motivated unconsciously by reduced pressure to help themselves, eg. by reducing land-use intensity keeping up with R&D experimenting with solutions on-farm sending kids to university cooperating with neighbours Help is unlikely to strengthen farmer self-help substantially unless most of their reciprocity is voluntary

Most farmer lapses in reciprocating help may be motivated unconsciously by reduced pressure to help themselves, eg. by

reducing land-use intensity

keeping up with R&D

experimenting with solutions on-farm

sending kids to university

cooperating with neighbours

Help is unlikely to strengthen farmer self-help substantially unless most of their reciprocity is voluntary

CBNRM, farmers, and reciprocity

Robert Axelrod identified two ways of promoting reciprocity: Change the payoffs (to make reciprocity consistent with actors’ goals); and/or Make the future more important relative to the present (“enlarge the shadow of the future”)

Robert Axelrod identified two ways of promoting reciprocity:

Change the payoffs (to make reciprocity consistent with actors’ goals); and/or

Make the future more important relative to the present (“enlarge the shadow of the future”)

How might CBNRM “change the payoffs”? Greater “community ownership” of decisions by farmers? Greater “ownership” of funds by administrators increases their strategic courage? Or … community body less able to deny help when reciprocity requires? advantages of government acting as “bad cop”

Greater “community ownership” of decisions by farmers?

Greater “ownership” of funds by administrators increases their strategic courage?

Or … community body less able to deny help when reciprocity requires?

advantages of government acting as “bad cop”

How might CBNRM enlarge the “shadow of the future”? Easier mutual monitoring by helpers and recipients? More durable interactions between helpers and recipients? More frequent interactions between helpers and recipients?

Easier mutual monitoring by helpers and recipients?

More durable interactions between helpers and recipients?

More frequent interactions between helpers and recipients?

Some evidence

Method Survey a sample of farmers Measure their (a) trust in their community-based agency, and (b) intentions to adopt practices it promotes to them. Test statistically whether the relationship between trust and intentions is positive (indicating reciprocity). Control for influence of other relevant factors.

Survey a sample of farmers

Measure their (a) trust in their community-based agency, and (b) intentions to adopt practices it promotes to them.

Test statistically whether the relationship between trust and intentions is positive (indicating reciprocity).

Control for influence of other relevant factors.

Two projects: Land and Water Management Planning (LWMP) in NSW’s Murray Irrigation Districts - surveyed 1999. Regional NRM delivery in 3 NRM regions – surveyed 2006: Fitzroy Basin (Qld) Mallee (Vic) South West Catchments (WA).

Two projects:

Land and Water Management Planning (LWMP) in NSW’s Murray Irrigation Districts - surveyed 1999.

Regional NRM delivery in 3 NRM regions – surveyed 2006:

Fitzroy Basin (Qld)

Mallee (Vic)

South West Catchments (WA).

7,490 km 2 ; 25,000 people; 1,610 farms. Historic antagonism between irrigators and NSW Government 1991 ~ Start developing community-based plans focused on irrigation salinity 1996 ~ Murray Irrigation Ltd, co-owned by irrigators, made responsible for ensuring farmers help implement the LWMPs by complying with their cost-sharing commitments . Murray LWMP project

7,490 km 2 ; 25,000 people; 1,610 farms.

Historic antagonism between irrigators and NSW Government

1991 ~ Start developing community-based plans focused on irrigation salinity

1996 ~ Murray Irrigation Ltd, co-owned by irrigators, made responsible for ensuring farmers help implement the LWMPs by complying with their cost-sharing commitments .

A significant positive relationship was found between farmers’ intentions to comply and their trust in their community-based corporation Indicates that farmers were interacting with CBNRM arrangements on the basis of reciprocity

A significant positive relationship was found between farmers’ intentions to comply and their trust in their community-based corporation

Indicates that farmers were interacting with CBNRM arrangements on the basis of reciprocity

Regional delivery project Fitzroy Basin Region 156,000 km 2 ; 200,000 people. CBNRM body is Fitzroy Basin Association (FBA) Central Highlands sub-region 45,000 km 2 ; 20,000 people. CBNRM body is Central Highlands Resources Use Planning Cooperative (CHRRUP)

Fitzroy Basin Region

156,000 km 2 ; 200,000 people.

CBNRM body is Fitzroy Basin Association (FBA)

Central Highlands sub-region

45,000 km 2 ; 20,000 people.

CBNRM body is Central Highlands Resources Use Planning Cooperative (CHRRUP)

Mallee Region 39,000 km 2 ; 65,000 people. focused on dryland area of region. CBNRM body is Mallee Catchment Management Authority. NRM delivery not devolved to sub-regional level

Mallee Region

39,000 km 2 ; 65,000 people.

focused on dryland area of region.

CBNRM body is Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

NRM delivery not devolved to sub-regional level

South West Catchments Region 51,657 km 2 ; 193,000 people; 5,000 farms. CBNRM body is South West Catchments Council. Blackwood Basin sub-region 23,500 km 2 ; 37,000 people; 2,000 farms. CBNRM body is Blackwood Basin Group (BBG).

South West Catchments Region

51,657 km 2 ; 193,000 people; 5,000 farms.

CBNRM body is South West Catchments Council.

Blackwood Basin sub-region

23,500 km 2 ; 37,000 people; 2,000 farms.

CBNRM body is Blackwood Basin Group (BBG).

Given the (a) greater scales of the regional-delivery cases, compared with the LWMP case, and (b) logic that increased scale lessens farmer incentives to practise reciprocity, … Farmer reciprocity was expected to be weaker in the regional-delivery cases … Although less weakened when delivery was devolved to the sub-regional level.

Given the

(a) greater scales of the regional-delivery cases, compared with the LWMP case, and

(b) logic that increased scale lessens farmer incentives to practise reciprocity,

… Farmer reciprocity was expected to be weaker in the regional-delivery cases

… Although less weakened when delivery was devolved to the sub-regional level.

Models were estimated for each of the 22 key conservation practices promoted across the three regions (7 by CHRRUP, 7 by Mallee CMA, 8 by BBG) Only one model (4.5%) indicated farmers were practising reciprocity with their regional CBNRM body This model was for the Mallee Region, where farmer interaction with the regional body was not reduced by presence of a sub-regional body In the two regions with sub-regional bodies, 9 of the 15 models (60%) indicated farmers were practising reciprocity with their subregional body

Models were estimated for each of the 22 key conservation practices promoted across the three regions (7 by CHRRUP, 7 by Mallee CMA, 8 by BBG)

Only one model (4.5%) indicated farmers were practising reciprocity with their regional CBNRM body

This model was for the Mallee Region, where farmer interaction with the regional body was not reduced by presence of a sub-regional body

In the two regions with sub-regional bodies, 9 of the 15 models (60%) indicated farmers were practising reciprocity with their subregional body

Devolving “NRM helping” to CBNRM arrangements can be effective in strengthening farmer capacities for self-help, although this benefit declines with increasing scale of CBNRM Caveat: Conclusions based on a limited set of cases – hypotheses only.

Devolving “NRM helping” to CBNRM arrangements can be effective in strengthening farmer capacities for self-help, although this benefit declines with increasing scale of CBNRM

Caveat: Conclusions based on a limited set of cases – hypotheses only.

Conclusions

The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves It is about making community members more likely to reciprocate the help given them under CBNRM Help from CBNRM may include leadership, networking, R&D, financial incentives, social incentives, regulation, extension, etc. Extension is important but only part of the picture

The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves

It is about making community members more likely to reciprocate the help given them under CBNRM

Help from CBNRM may include leadership, networking, R&D, financial incentives, social incentives, regulation, extension, etc.

Extension is important but only part of the picture

We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn systematically how to solve the Samaritan’s Dilemma A “business approach” to CBNRM requires us – at all levels - to devise targets, milestones, program logics and M&E strategies accordingly.

We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn systematically how to solve the Samaritan’s Dilemma

A “business approach” to CBNRM requires us – at all levels - to devise targets, milestones, program logics and M&E strategies accordingly.

Key points The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn how to address the “Samaritan’s Dilemma” that faces us in helping farmers’ self-help Targets, program logic, and M & E need, at all levels, to change as we learn.

The raison d’etre of community-based NRM lies in helping people to help themselves

We need to acknowledge, understand, and learn how to address the “Samaritan’s Dilemma” that faces us in helping farmers’ self-help

Targets, program logic, and M & E need, at all levels, to change as we learn.

 

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