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Co-managing complex social-ecological systems in Tanzania
The case of Lake Jipe wetland

Christopher Mahonge

Co-managing complex social-ecological systems in Tanzania
2010, 206 pages, paperback, Environmental Policy - ISSN 2210-3309, Volume 2

ISBN: 978-90-8686-151-4
Price:  € 48.00  € 38.40  (excluding VAT)

       Also available as e-book

It has been conventional among co-management scientists to view social-ecological systems and actors and institutions found in these systems monolithically. Such a view is simplistic and conceals the complex nature of social-ecological systems and associated institutions and actors. In essence, a social-ecological system is a complex system comprised of multiple, diverse and dynamic social-ecological units, players and rules. This book entitled Co-managing complex social-ecological systems unveils the aforementioned complexity in which Lake Jipe wetland in Tanzania is the central case. This case depicts intra-, inter- and cross-scale interactions among multiple and dynamic institutions, actors and ecological systems at different dimensions of space and time. While some candidates of actors and institutions play separate roles, others play interdependent and linking roles across the multiple sectoral social-ecological units. The book introduces the layering concept of institutions and actors in three sectoral arrangements at Lake Jipe. It argues that not only do the institutions and actors found in social-ecological systems operate next to one another but it becomes clear that they also work interdependently. This concept extends the existing knowledge of co-management practitioners and scholars about the diversity and complexity of inter-linked human-environment systems that traverse the current monolithic view and conceptual boundaries. As such, the book avoids a simplistic approach that may end up in superficial treatment of complex environmental management problem and sheds light on how to study and approach intricate social-ecological systems using a model that recognises the diversities of these intricate systems.

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