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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2010

Particular and wider interests in natural resource management: Organizing together but separately

Arora-Jonsson, Seema


The focus that scholars have put on mainstream institutions for resource management, i.e. those recognized by the community and development agents as the primary organizations for resource management, has tended to mask alternative, less visible, but equally robust, organizational forms in which resources are managed and development is carried out at the local level. Mainstream institutions are often inadequate as arenas for negotiating contested interests. By directing attention to women's organizing in contexts in the south (India) and the north (Sweden), it is argued in this paper that although inclusive and heterogeneous structures are essential for the sustainable and equitable management of natural resources such as forests, in order to be able to be so, mainstream institutions need to be able to relate to other structures and forms that are exclusive and represent particular interests. This study of institutional contexts in such different places informs thinking on resource management, development and gender equality, and has practical implications for sustainable and equitable resource management. Importantly, it draws attention to the need to redefine how we study institutions for natural resource management.


Development; gender; institutions; particular and general interests; resource management; structure

Published in

Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research
2010, volume: 25, pages: 33-44

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Urban and Rural Development

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG5 Gender equality
SDG12 Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

UKÄ Subject classification

Economics and Business
Social Sciences
Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

Publication Identifiers


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