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5 Responses

  1. I very much enjoyed your presentation. I have one quick comment and three questions.

    First, at one point you mention that there is a tragedy of the commons, but it seems that it is better described as a tragedy of privatization.

    Second, you describe how in the case of the greater Mara, pastoralists are erecting fences and in the case of Laikipia, they are taking down the fences to assert their rights to common pastures. What explains the differences in pastoralists’ strategies in these two cases?

    Third, do you think that pastoralists in the greater Mara will also tear down the fences in the future? Why or why not?

    Fourth, I am intrigued by the reference to archaeological fieldwork and would like to know more about how you used an archaeological approach to study pastoral commons. Do you have papers that you recommend?

    1. Thanks for your comments, they are really interesting and there’s lots to talk about. I will however try and keep the answers brief here.

      I like your point on seeing this instead of a kind of tragedy of prior privatization processes. – Our intention was, however, to point to the fact that although this really looks like a classical tragedy of a commons – instead it emerges out of those (temporally and spatially) overlapping and often conflicting tenure forms, consisting of both commoning, privatization and what happens in between.

      In the case of Mara and Laikipia, the expansion (and manifestation) of fences has happened at different points in time. Moreover, the two different strategies emerge out of two quite different scenarios – one in which ignoring fences or defencing is a protest against existing property regimes (Laikipia) and another in which fencing appears as defense and a protection in relation to a history of marginalization and in which non-manifest boundaries have been disregarded (Mara).

      I can’t recall the reference to archaeological fieldwork in our presentation, but this is super fascinating stuff and there is a whole list of references to dive into on the cross-section between landscape archaeology and pastoral commons! I will e-mail them to you. Till then check out our paper in Scientific Reports (Løvschal et al. 2017) and another one in JRAI (Løvschal 2020).

  2. Fascinating presentation. Looking forward to your response to the important questions raised by Mark Moritz.

  3. I really enjoyed your presentation. I am amazed by the fencing boundary mapping in your 2017 paper. I saw they were hand digitized. Wonder if you have compared the land cover land use changes between the fenced and the neighboring unfenced areas?

    1. Thanks for your comment! We did look for fences in the neighbouring areas while doing the digitisation – to the south is the Serengeti National Park which is kept free of fences, but otherwise there are some quite heavily fenced areas, many in which fences precede the 1980s. There are currently a series of initiatives on community level to tackle the fencing issue which will be interesting to follow in the forthcoming years. We are also currently working on making the fencing data up to date (2017-2020) as well as testing out other methods (e.g. AI) for mapping out fences.

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