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Indigenous Common Property Resource Management in the Central Highlands of Ethiopia

Ashenafi, Zelealem Tefera, Leader-Williams, Nigel (2005) Indigenous Common Property Resource Management in the Central Highlands of Ethiopia. Human Ecology, 33 (4). pp. 539-563. ISSN 0300-7839. (doi:10.1007/s10745-005-5159-9) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:8453)

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A better understanding of common property resource management systems and institutions is important for conservation and development, as fortress-based approaches towards conservation are increasingly questioned. This paper examines how an indigenous resource management system has operated and supported the protection of an Afro-alpine area in the Central Highlands of Ethiopia. The community was mainly concerned to regulate their own use of natural resources, including collection of firewood and thatch, and grazing by livestock. The original common property resource management system operated under a previously undescribed indigenous institution known as the Qero system, which was enforced through sanctions and punishments imposed by the community. The Qero system was suspended following the Agrarian Reform in 1975, which resulted in the breakdown of the traditional land tenure and land rights systems within Ethiopia. In the Central Highlands, user rights and management responsibility shifted to include formerly marginalized groups. Nevertheless, the common property management system has shown sufficient resilience to withstand these changes and pressures, and is still functioning with defined user groups and byelaws to regulate resource use and manage the area. Nevertheless, attitudes to current and future management are polarized between former and present managers of the common property regime.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1007/s10745-005-5159-9
Uncontrolled keywords: common property resources indigenous resource management institutions Qero system Guassa Ethiopia TRAGEDY
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > DICE (Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology)
Depositing User: C.G.W.G. van-de-Benderskum
Date Deposited: 29 Sep 2008 11:55 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 09:46 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Leader-Williams, Nigel.

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