Records 1 - 20 / 308
Farmers’ perception of opportunities for farm development
Methorst, Ron - \ 2016
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Han Wiskerke, co-promotor(en): Dirk Roep; Jos Verstegen. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462579439 - 192
farm development - perception - agriculture - entrepreneurship - case studies - sociology - bedrijfsontwikkeling in de landbouw - perceptie - landbouw - ondernemerschap - gevalsanalyse - sociologie
Differences in the perception of opportunities for farm development is researched in this thesis in relation to differences in the embedding of the farm in the socio-material context. This study contributes to a Sociology of Entrepreneurship in focusing on the decision-maker specific aspects using the concepts Opportunity Identification, Strategic Decision-Making and Embeddedness. In a case study of family dairy farmers operating in a highly comparable socio-material context at the level of the case study, a mix of quantitative and qualitative data were used to analyse differences at the level of the decision-makers on the family farm. Based on the perceived viability of 15 opportunities for farm development to contribute to farm income, four clusters of opportunities were found that represent different farm development strategies: 1) maximising production; 2) optimising the use of own resources; 3) diversifying production; and 4) ending dairy farming. Personal views and preferences showed to be the most influential driver, mediating the influence of the combined set of seven drivers on the perception of opportunities. Taking the perspective of embeddedness, every farm development strategy appeared to have different sets of relations for three dimensions of the socio-material context: the socio-cultural context, the dairy value chain and the use of resources for production. These sets of relations differ on a scale ranging from more ‘close’ to more ‘stretched’ set of relations, resembling a mixing paned of three sliders on which the family farmer positions itself, a positioning that is related to personal views and preference. The socio-material characteristics of a farm, thus, result from, and reflect how it is embedded in a set of heterogeneous relations. This finding supports the relevance of a relational perspective on farm development where strategic decision-making is the reiterative process of embedding farm practices in the different sets of relations of the farm with the socio-material context. The farmer’s interpretation of the complex and dynamic relations in the socio-material context affects the identification of opportunities for farm development. Approaching strategic decision-making as the positioning in sets of relations offers a non-normative approach to family farm development in relation to the socio-material context. Awareness of the influence of personal views and preferences combined with a non-normative approach is of relevance for effective policies and support programmes to support the development of vital farms in vital rural areas.
Keywords: family farm, farm development, strategy, opportunity identification, strategic decision-making, embeddedness
Community gardens in urban areas: a critical reflection on the extent to which they strenghten social cohesion and provide alternative food
Veen, E.J. - \ 2015
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Han Wiskerke, co-promotor(en): Andries Visser; Bettina Bock. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462573383 - 265
publieke tuinen - tuinieren - stedelijke gebieden - bewonersparticipatie - buurtactie - stadslandbouw - alternatieve landbouw - volkstuinen - voedingsmiddelen - biologische voedingsmiddelen - sociologie - public gardens - gardening - urban areas - community participation - community action - urban agriculture - alternative farming - allotment gardens - foods - organic foods - sociology
The aims of this thesis are twofold; firstly, it aims to increase the understanding of the extent to which community gardens enhance social cohesion for those involved; secondly, it aims to gain insight into the importance community gardeners attach to food growing per se, and the extent to which participants perceive community gardens as an alternative to the industrial food system.
I define community gardens as a plot of land in an urban area, cultivated either communally or individually by people from the direct neighbourhood or the wider city, or in which urbanites are involved in other ways than gardening, and to which there is a collective element. Over the last years, community gardens have sprung up in several Dutch cities. Although there are various reasons for an increasing interest in community gardens, there are two that I focus on in this thesis in particular. The first is the assumption made that community gardens stimulate social cohesion in inner-city neighbourhoods, to be seen in the light of the ‘participatory society’. The second is community gardens’ contribution to the availability of locally produced food, in the context of an increased interest in Alternative Food Networks (AFNs).
The Dutch government aims to transform the Dutch welfare state into a participatory society in which citizens take more responsibility for their social and physical environment. This way the government not only hopes to limit public spending, but also wishes to increase social bonding and the self-organisational capacity of society. Community gardens fit the rhetoric around the participatory society, as they are examples of organised residents taking responsibility for their living environment. Moreover, the literature suggests that gardens are physical interventions that may decrease isolation by acting as meeting places. However, both the extent to which community gardens enhance social cohesion and under what conditions they may do so are unclear, especially as gardens come in various designs, shapes and sizes.
The popularity of community gardens also seems to be related to an overall increasing societal interest in food, and can be discussed in relation to Alternative Food Networks. AFNs are food systems that are different in some way from the mainstream, and are seen as a reaction to consumer concerns about the conventional food system. They are often considered to be dictated by political motivations and injected with a ‘deeper morality’. The category ‘AFN’ is however a heterogeneous category, as is the conventional food system; neither can be easily defined. The degree to which community gardens can be seen as AFNs is therefore unclear. While they do improve the availability of local food and operate outside of the market economy, we do not know how much and how often people eat from their gardens, nor do we know to what extent they are involved in the gardens in order to provide an alternative to the industrial food system. Hence, there is a lack of knowledge about the sense in which community gardens are alternative alternatives.
The overall research question of this thesis is:
What is the significance of community gardening in terms of its intention to promote social cohesion as well as its representation as an alternative food system?
This broad question is instructed by the following sub-questions:Why do people get involved in community gardens? What are their motivations?How, to what extent, and under which conditions does community gardening promote the development of social relations between participants? How do participants value these social effects? To what extent do the diets of community garden participants originate from the gardens in which they are involved? What is the importance of food in community gardens?What is the importance of growing or getting access to alternative food for participants of community gardens? Methodology
An important theoretical lens in this research is the theory of practice. Practices are defined as concrete human activity and include things, bodily doings and sayings. By performing practices people not only draw upon but also feed into structure. Routinisation – of practices, but also of daily life – therefore plays a central role in practice theory. Practice theory allows for an emphasis on practical reality as well as a study of motivations. This focus on how people manage everyday life, and how gardening fits within that, makes it particularly useful for this thesis.
I define social cohesion as the way in which people in a society feel and are connected to each other (De Kam and Needham 2003) and operationalised it by focusing on ‘social contacts, social networks, and social capital’, one of the elements into which social cohesion is often broken up. This element was operationalised as 1) contacts (the width of social cohesion) and 2) mutual help (the depth of social cohesion).
This research has a case study design; I studied four Dutch community gardens over a two-year period of time, and later supplemented these with an additional three cases. As practices consist of both doings and sayings, analysis must be concerned with both practical activity and its representation. I used participant observations to study practical activities, and interviews, questionnaires and document study to examine the representation of these activities.
Chapters 3 to 7 form the main part of this thesis. They are papers/book chapters that have been submitted to or are published by scientific journals or books. All of them are based on the field work.
In chapter 3 we compare two of the case studies and determine to what extent they can be seen as ‘alternative’. We argue that although reflexive motivations are present, most participants are unwilling to frame their involvement as political, and mundane motivations play an important role in people’s involvement as well. By using the concept of ‘food provisioning practices’ we show that participants of community gardens are often required to be actively involved in the production of their food. This means that participants are both producers and consumers: the gardens show a ‘sliding scale of producership’. This chapter also shows that political statements are not a perfect predictor of actual involvement in community gardening. This finding was one of the main reasons for starting to use the theory of practice, which is the main topic of the next chapter.
In chapter 4 we compare one of my case studies with an urban food growing initiative in New York City. By comparing the internal dynamics of these two cases and their relations with other social practices, we investigate whether different urban food growing initiatives can be seen as variations of one single practice. We also study the question of whether the practice can be seen as emerging. In particular, we take the elements of meaning, competences and material (Shove et al. 2012) into account. We found both similarities and differences between the two cases, with the main difference relating to the meanings practitioners attach to the practice. We conclude, therefore, that it is not fully convincing to see these cases as examples of the same social practice. We also argue that urban food growing may be considered an emerging practice, because it combines various practices, both new and established, under one single heading.
In chapter 5 we use the theory of practice to explore how urban food growing is interwoven with everyday life. We compare four community gardens - two allotments and two cases which we define as AFNs. We found that participants of the allotments are involved in the practice of gardening, while members of the AFNs are involved in the practice of shopping. The gardening practice requires structural engagement, turning it into a routine. The produce is a result of that routine and is easily integrated into daily meals. As AFNs are associated with the practice of shopping, they remain in competition with more convenient food acquisition venues. Eating from these gardens is therefore less easily integrated in daily life; every visit to the garden requires a conscious decision. Hence, whether members are primarily involved in shopping or in growing has an impact on the degree to which they eat urban-grown food. This shows that motivations are embedded in the context and routine of everyday life, and ‘only go so far’.
Chapter 6 concerns the organisational differences between the seven case studies in this thesis and the extent to which these influence the enhancement of social cohesion. We study people’s motivations for being involved in the gardens and compare these with the three main organisational differences. This comparison reveals that the gardens can be divided into place-based and interest-based gardens. Place-based gardens are those in which people participate for social reasons – aiming to create social bonds in the neighbourhood. Interest-based gardens are those in which people participate because they enjoy growing vegetables. Nevertheless, all of these gardens contribute to the development of social cohesion. Moreover, while participants who are motivated by the social aspects of gardening show a higher level of appreciation for them, these social aspects also bring added value for those participants who are motivated primarily by growing vegetables.
In chapter 7 we present a garden that exemplifies that gardens may encompass not only one, but indeed several communities, and that rapprochement and separation take place simultaneously. While this garden is an important meeting place, thereby contributing to social cohesion, it harbours two distinct communities. These communities assign others to categories (‘us’ and ‘them’) on the basis of place of residence, thereby strengthening their own social identities. Ownership over the garden is both an outcome and a tool in that struggle. We define the relationship between these two communities as instrumental-rational – referring to roles rather than individuals - which explains why they do not form a larger unity. Nevertheless, the two communities show the potential to develop into a larger imagined garden-community.
This thesis shows that the different organisational set-ups of community gardens reflect gardeners’ different motivations for being involved in these gardens. The gardens studied in this thesis can be defined as either place-based or interest-based; gardens in the first category are focused on the social benefits of gardening, whereas gardens in the second category are focused on gardening and vegetables. Nevertheless, social effects occur in both types of gardens; in all of the gardens studied, participants meet and get to know others and value these contacts. Based on this finding, I conclude that community gardens do indeed enhance social cohesion.
Place-based community gardens specifically have the potential to become important meeting places; they offer the opportunity to work communally towards a common goal, and once established, can develop into neighbourhood spaces to be used for various other shared activities. Most interest-based gardens lack opportunities to develop the social contacts that originated at the garden beyond the borders of the garden. These gardens are often maintained by people who do not live close to the garden or to each other, and those who garden are generally less motivated by social motivations per se. Important to note is that community gardens do not necessarily foster a more inclusive society; they often attract people with relatively similar socio-economic backgrounds and may support not one, but several communities.Most participants from place-based gardens eat from their gardens only occasionally; others never do so. This type of community garden can therefore hardly be seen as a reaction to the industrialised food system, let alone an attempt to create an alternative food system. Nevertheless, certain aspects of these gardens are in line with the alternative rhetoric. By contrast, most gardeners at interest-based gardens eat a substantial amount of food from their gardens, and to some of them the choice to consume this locally-grown food relates to a lifestyle in which environmental considerations play a role. However, this reflexivity is not expressed in political terms and participants do not see themselves as part of a food movement. Participants who buy rather than grow produce showed the greatest tendency to explain their involvement in political terms, but many of them have difficulty including the produce in their diets on a regular basis. I therefore conclude that community gardens cannot be seen as conscious, ‘alternative’ alternatives to the industrial food system. Nonetheless, the role of food in these gardens is essential, as it is what brings participants together – either because they enjoy gardening or because the activities which are organised there centre around food.
In this thesis I used and aimed to contribute to the theory of practice. Using participant observations to study what people do in reality was particularly useful. It turned research into an embodied activity, enabling me to truly ‘live the practice’, and therefore to understand it from the inside.
Deconstructing the practice of food provisioning into activities such as buying, growing and cooking was helpful in gaining an understanding of how people manage everyday life, and how food acquisitioning fits into their everyday rhythms. It sheds light on how and to what extent people experience the practice of community gardening as a food acquisitioning practice, and to what degree they relate it to other elements of food provisioning such as cooking and eating. The focus on the separate elements of food provisioning practices helped me realise that acquiring food from community gardens represents a different practice to different people; some are engaged in the practice of growing food, others in the practice of shopping for food.
This thesis showed that motivations delineate how the practice ‘works out in practice’; the way in which a practice such as community gardening is given shape attracts people with certain motivations, who, by reproducing that practice, increase the attractiveness of the practice for others with similar motivations. This implies that while community gardening appears to be one practice, it should in fact be interpreted as several distinct practices, such as the practice of food growing or the practice of social gathering. Motivations therefore influence a garden’s benefits and outcomes. This thesis thus highlights that motivations should not be overlooked when studying practices.
Apprehending the motivations of community gardeners is also an important contribution to the literature around AFNs, since it helps us to understand the extent to which urban food production is truly alternative. By studying motivations, this thesis reveals that AFNs do not necessarily represent a deeper morality, or that not all food growing initiatives in the city can be defined as alternative. However, participants of community gardens are often both producers and consumers (there is a ‘sliding scale of producership’); the gardens are thus largely independent from the conventional food system. Moreover, for participants who buy produce, the meaning of the gardens often goes beyond an economic logic (there is a ‘sliding scale of marketness’). Hence, while the gardens studied in this thesis are no alternative alternatives, most of them can be qualified as ‘actually existing alternatives’ (after Jehlicka and Smith 2011).
This thesis showed that even those gardens in which the commodification of food is being challenged do not necessarily represent a deeper morality, which is contrary to what is argued by Watts et al. (2005). This implies that understanding whether or not initiatives resist incorporation into the food system is insufficient to be able to determine whether or not they can be defined as alternative food networks. However, determining whether or not deeper moral reflection is present is not a satisfactory way of defining food networks as alternative either, as this neglects the fact that motivations do not always overlap with practical reality. This suggests that establishing whether a food network can be regarded as alternative requires studying both motivations and practical reality. The thesis also raises the question to what extent the label AFN is still useful. Since it is unclear what ‘alternative’ means exactly, it is also unclear whether a given initiative can be considered alternative. Moreover, the world of food seems too complex to be represented by a dichotomy between alternative and conventional food systems; the gardens presented in this thesis are diverse and carry characteristics of both systems. I therefore suggest considering replacing the term AFN with that of civic food networks, as Renting et al. (2012) advocate.
A social analysis of contested fishing practices in Lake Victoria
Medard, M. - \ 2015
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Han van Dijk, co-promotor(en): Paul Hebinck; R. Mwaipopo. - Wageningen : s.n. - ISBN 9789462572478 - 278
visserij - gemeenschappen - productiviteit - hulpbronnen - ontwikkeling - sociologie - organisatie - visserijbeheer - ondernemerschap - meren - tanzania - fisheries - communities - productivity - resources - development - sociology - organization - fishery management - entrepreneurship - lakes - tanzania
The thesis explored how the global market for Nile Perch fish has reconfigured the social and the natural in dramatic ways. The demand for Nile Perch and Dagaa played, willingly or unwillingly, an important role in converting its products into regionally and globally desired commodity. It has also simultaneously restructured the organisation of fisheries into a complex and aggressively managed sector. In fishing and fish trade, one needs to externalize costs and risks to the lower actors in the production and business hierarchy. From an historical point of view, power has shifted from many points of coordination and decision making into a few hands, those that own fishing camps and export processing factory. Moreover, illegal fishing and trading are continuous and corruption is rife to safe guard individual interest in turn shaping the local practices (governance) of Lake Victoria. Finally the debate about fisheries policies and fisheries regulation in L. Victoria does not address local realities and are largely irrelevant and that the real focus of power and driver of change is the international and regional markets for Nile Perch and Dagaa and global players with a lot of capital.
On the traces of Hephaestus : skills, technology and social participation
Nicolosi, G. - \ 2014
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Han Wiskerke; Guido Ruivenkamp. - Wageningen University : Wageningen - ISBN 9789462570672 - 173
technologie - technische vooruitgang - samenleving - sociologie - filosofie - participatie - vaardigheden - biotechnologie - technology - technical progress - society - sociology - philosophy - participation - skills - biotechnology
In the general understanding, and also in scientific practice, technology and society are viewed as two distinct entities. Related to this view is the assumption that technology and human experience are quite different and unconnected and also the idea that modernity has uprooted, de-contextualized and disembodied technical rationality. Taking a contrary approach, this study represents a theoretical exploration aimed at showing that in the domain of technological development, there are significant margins for maneuver in which to recuperate and valorize human and social action. As a work of theoretical sociology or social epistemology, this thesis approaches its subject from the theoretical background of the philosophy and sociology of technique. The historical and conventional assumptions of this theoretical background, it is argued, have been and continue to be characterized by a hegemonically defined essentialist paradigm. This paradigm has been fiercely counteracted by two opposed approaches, critical theory and pragmatism. The present work combines these approaches, usually considered mutually incompatible, for the development of a new theoretical gaze or perspective. The aim has been to engage in a theoretical research oriented to a new philosophy of praxis in order to instigate a critical and constructivist approach to technology. The main result expected of this work is the provision of a problematized and multifaceted semantic map leading to a multidimensional conceptual re-integration of skilled experience in human technical action.
Networks and knowledge at the interface: governing the coast of East Kalimantan, Indonesia
Kusumawati, R. - \ 2014
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Leontine Visser, co-promotor(en): Simon Bush; P.M. Laksono. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789461739292 - 185
ontwikkeling - sociologie - plattelandsontwikkeling - kustgebieden - visserij - middelen van bestaan - natuurlijke hulpbronnen - governance - milieubeleid - etnografie - decentralisatie - overheidsbeleid - indonesië - zuidoost-azië - development - sociology - rural development - coastal areas - fisheries - livelihoods - natural resources - governance - environmental policy - ethnography - decentralization - government policy - indonesia - south east asia
Feminization of agricultural production in rural China : a sociological analysis
Meng, X. - \ 2014
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Jandouwe van der Ploeg, co-promotor(en): J. Ye; H. Wu. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789461738158 - 178
vrouwelijke arbeidskrachten - landbouwproductie - plattelandsvrouwen - familiebedrijven, landbouw - feminisme - sociologie - geslacht (gender) - man-vrouwrelaties - positie van de vrouw - vrouwenemancipatie - vrouwen - landbouw - plattelandsontwikkeling - china - female labour - agricultural production - rural women - family farms - feminism - sociology - gender - gender relations - woman's status - emancipation of women - women - agriculture - rural development - china
Rural-urban migration of male labour force is an unstoppable process in China. Although some women also migrate to work in cities, most of these women return to the villages after marriage. They need to take care of the children and the family and to work on their smallholder farms. In general, women‟s labour participation in agriculture has increased due to the migration of the male labourers and they have become the main labour force in smallholder agriculture. This thesis is a sociological analysis on the impact of this change on the situation of these women and on smallholder agriculture from the women‟s perspective.
Transfrontier Conservation Areas: people living on the edge
Andersson, J.A. ; Garine-Wichatitsky, M. de; Cumming, D.H.M. ; Dzingirai, V. ; Giller, K.E. - \ 2013
Oxon, UK : Routledge - ISBN 9781849712088 - 216
beschermingsgebieden - grensgebieden - natuurlijke hulpbronnen - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - samenleving - sociologie - toerisme - wild - wildbescherming - mensen - zuidelijk afrika - conservation areas - frontier areas - natural resources - sustainability - society - sociology - tourism - wildlife - wildlife conservation - people - southern africa
This book focuses on the forgotten people displaced by, or living on the edge of, protected wildlife areas. It moves beyond the grand 'enchanting promise' of conservation and development across frontiers, and unfounded notions of TFCAs as integrated social-ecological systems. Peoples' dependency on natural resources – the specific combination of crop cultivation, livestock keeping and natural resource harvesting activities – varies enormously along the conservation frontier, as does their reliance on resources on the other side of the conservation boundary. Hence, the studies in this book move from the dream of eco-tourism-fuelled development supporting nature conservation and people towards the local realities facing marginalized people, living adjacent to protected areas in environments often poorly suited to agriculture.
Visser, L.E. - \ 2013
Wageningen : Wageningen Universiteit - ISBN 9789461733283
ontwikkeling - sociologie - ontwikkelingsstudies - antropologie - ontwikkelingstheorie - armoede - interdisciplinair onderzoek - globalisering - development - sociology - development studies - anthropology - development theory - poverty - interdisciplinary research - globalization
De vraag of er ontwikkeling is, kan altijd en overal positief worden beantwoord. Maar de betekenis ervan verschilt voor een visser in Indonesië of een handelaar in Honduras. De Sociologie van Ontwikkeling staat voor een niet-normatieve benadering van ontwikkeling en tracht de meervoudigheid ervan in de praktijk van het alledaagse leven te begrijpen. Een kritische toetsing van regels en modellen vraagt de noodzakelijke aandacht voor de diversiteit en creativiteit van mensen die ontwikkeling in eigen hand willen houden in de marges van de globale wereld.
The arena of everyday life
Butijn, C.A.A. ; Ophem, J.A.C. van; Casimir, G.J. - \ 2013
Wageningen : Wageningen Academic Publishers (Mansholt publication series no. 12) - ISBN 9789086867752 - 174
middelen van bestaan - strategieën voor levensonderhoud - huishoudens - sociale ontwikkeling - volksgezondheid - vrouw en samenleving - consumenten - huishoudkunde - sociologie - livelihoods - livelihood strategies - households - social development - public health - woman and society - consumers - home economics - sociology
In 'The arena of everyday life' nine authors look back and forward at developments in the sociology of consumers and households. Nine chapters show variety in the employed methods, from multivariate analyses of survey data to classical essays. The contributions are organised around four themes. In the first theme, two chapters entail a critical discussion of the concepts livelihood and household. The second part deals with health, in particular food security, hygiene and aids/HIV. The third theme focuses on female opportunities to foster income procurement of household by respectively microfinance and entrepreneurship. The fourth theme concentrates on two topical societal developments in a Western society, the first chapter dealing with the issue of creating opportunities for tailor-made services to older people, the second one focussing on the home-work balance of telecommuters.
Healthy Ageing: prevention of loneliness among elderly people : evaluation of a complex intervention in public health practice
Honigh - de Vlaming, R. - \ 2013
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Lisette de Groot; Pieter van 't Veer, co-promotor(en): Annemien Haveman-Nies. - S.l. : s.n. - ISBN 9789461735041 - 214
ouderen - verouderen - levensomstandigheden - sociale integratie - sociologie - interventie - volksgezondheid - nederland - elderly - aging - living conditions - social integration - sociology - intervention - public health - netherlands
Livelihood strategies : gender and generational specificities of rural levilihoods in transition
Nizamedinkhodjayeva, N. - \ 2013
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Han Wiskerke, co-promotor(en): P.P. Mollinga; Bettina Bock. - [S.l.] : s.n. - ISBN 9789461734501 - 166
strategieën voor levensonderhoud - platteland - overgangseconomieën - cultuur - sociologie - geslacht (gender) - vrouwen - besluitvorming - landbouwhuishoudens - oezbekistan - centraal-azië - livelihood strategies - rural areas - transition economies - culture - sociology - gender - women - decision making - agricultural households - uzbekistan - central asia
Forest fights in Haripur, Northwest Pakistan
Nizami, A. - \ 2013
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Leontine Visser, co-promotor(en): Paul Hebinck. - S.l. : s.n. - ISBN 9789461734556 - 257
ontwikkelingsstudies - sociologie - politieke processen - acteurs - actor-network theorie - samenleving - natuur - bossen - bosbouw - staat - bosbranden - ecologie - vrouwen - pachtstelsel - pakistan - development studies - sociology - political processes - actors - actor-network theory - society - nature - forests - forestry - state - forest fires - ecology - women - tenure systems - pakistan
This thesis is an inter-paradigmatic exchange between political ecology and post-structuralist interpretations of actor-structure relationships. The study is founded on multiple discourses where different interpretations of a particular phenomenon by various actors have been analysed. The thesis is meant to show that relationships between society and nature are dynamic, entail multi-sited struggles among many actors at several terrains and are deeply rooted in earlier history.The study transpires that the forest is shaped by a loosely knit network of actors that are linked together by a kaleidoscope of rights, claims and social relationships which seem to determine the fate of the forest in a village.
Chapter 2 elaborates the theoretical foundation and methodological trajectory of this thesis. The concept of arena is central and analytically useful for this study as it connotes and involves social actors, their social relationships, practices and struggles between them. The notion of social arena is a metaphor for the site or place where action takes place between social actors. These places are not limited by geographical, natural or administrative borders. Arenas are social locations in which contests over issues, resources, values and representations take place. These are either spaces in which contestation associated with different practices and values of different domains takes place; or they are spaces within a single domain where attempts are made to resolve discrepancies in value interpretation and incompatibilities between actor interests. I argue that the forest as a social arena stretches beyond its natural and physical borders.The arena as the site of the struggle is not just geographically confined within natural (e.g. forest) and/or administrative (e.g. political) boundaries but it stretches beyond the locality. These arenas are diverse, they overlap and co-exist, and the boundaries at a given time are defined by networks of relationships between forest users and consumers, relationships between the State, bureaucrats, forest owners, dwellers, and so on.
Chapter 3 gives a detailed account of history of Haripur and how forests were legally categorised and distributed. History helps understand the political alliances and the power struggles in the region, the district, and (sub district) Khanpur. The State, during British rule introduced a new management regime for natural resources which changed the entire social landscape of Khanpur by attaching private property rights to the trees as well as forest lands in the region. The government authorities, notably the Forest department have most often seen forest dwellers destructive for the forest, depleting its resources and interfering with nature. This premise lays foundation of mistrust between people and the government. Contrary to this, the initiatives to introduce people in forestry governance are based on the realisation that the ownership, or at least management control over forests, is critical to responsible management by the people.
Chapter 4 provides a detailed account of how the Forest department operates in relation to people and forest resources. There are multiple scales of articulation, alliances and struggles within and around the department and these positions are changeable from time to time with several internal and external factors. The case of Forest department manifests that the State is to be seen as a multifaceted organ and not as an individual actor. Structural changes were introduced in the department but the core on which the foundation of the department was laid, was never changed. Many women firmly believe that the department must continue to use authority to control local people who cause degradation. Each reform initiative taken in the name of participation ended up with basically continuing the same centralised system. Forests were never handed over to the community along with management responsibility (e.g. Guzara forests). Only joint management of forests was enacted – yet not implemented. Trust remained a major issue in all these struggles.
The subject of forest fire, which I perceive and have experienced as a strong manifestation of resistance and also as a tool to manipulate natural resources, has been dealt with in different places in this thesis, but particularly in Chapter 5. Burning forests is an old practice for clearing land for agriculture.Fire therefore had a significant role in defining farmers’ territories. Gradually these practices changed but grazers continued to light up forests to produce lush green grass for their livestock. This led to a persistent discourse based on appropriating every fire incident to the grazers’ practices. This study highlights that fire is now increasingly used as a management tool for manipulating the resource. Firewood collectors and big owners use fire for obtaining dry firewood or build the case for felling dead / dry trees which is allowed in the policy after ban on green felling. Even if fires may occur due to the will of the forest owner, the policy blindly holds grazersresponsible for their wasteful and damaging practices. The collectors of Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP), mostly women, are not happy with fire since their resources are burnt down due to the productive fire requirement of Chir pine (Pinus roxburghii). There is an incline in the graph of forest fires, decreasing self initiative among people to control fires, along with the Forest department’s management bias towards Chir pine trees in fire control operations; these concerns echo in various voices from the field. The chapter also highlights a form of connivance between the owner and the occupants of lands (peasants / tenants) and also the owners and Forest department staff.
Chapters 6 deals with actors in their struggle to secure their rights to the forest through acquiring forest land title deeds. This initiative from the side of the new owners can be understood as a response to what is explained in Chapter 5. No forests have been handed over with management responsibilities to non owner forest users in nearly one and a half centuries. Non owners have resorted to buying forest lands in little parcels in creating private forests. This way, new meanings are given to the forest and new spaces are created through tactical networking among various actors. Field evidence and opinions from several actors suggest that Reserved forests are frequently being accessed by people for their needs in a de facto manner. Several new owners have acquired land entitlement comprising small pieces of lands which do not have a huge timber value in future. Followed by this, it is also visible that the nature of power in the contemporary society of Khanpur (and beyond) is changing. Power, which was once measured through landholding, is now measured through other symbols, such as political connectivity and affiliation.
Regular access to NTFP by non-right holders for the sake of earning an income (Chapter 7) is an illustration of their struggle, or more strongly put, an in-between expression of resistance. Poor women remain invisible in their daily practice to access NTFPs. They use spaces that are considered undesirable by other forest actors. These spaces cannot be completely separated within the social arena, but they are knitted into the day to day practices of people. State intrusion into women’s customary and de facto practices concerns them. They fear that this will only reduce their chances of earning a modest livelihood from the forest. However, the women are also highly creative in reshaping their practices and relationships with every change that takes place around them. Firewood collection is the most visible, uninterrupted and non-compromising activity for women. In their daily struggle to feed the family, they virtually manage and control the forest. Contrary to this, women are not part of any dialogue on forestry reform. They need to be part of the negotiation process in which their spaces remain secure. The most important challenge is to create the mechanisms for discussion, negotiation, and arbitration of gendered access regimes under a variety of circumstances.
|Eerlijke economie : Calvijn en het sociaaleconomische leven
Jongeneel, R.A. - \ 2012
Amsterdam : Buijten & Schipperheijn (Verantwoording 30) - ISBN 9789058816702 - 224
christendom - religie - economie - geschiedenis - levensstijl - economische theorie - sociologie - kerk - christianity - religion - economics - history - lifestyle - economic theory - sociology - church
|Food Practices in Transition - Changing Food Consumption, Retail and Production in the Age of Reflexive Modernity
Spaargaren, G. ; Oosterveer, P.J.M. ; Loeber, A.M.C. - \ 2012
New York/London : Routledge (Routledge studies in sustainability transitions 3) - ISBN 9780415880848 - 356
voedselvoorziening - voedselconsumptie - milieueffect - voedselindustrie - sociologie - landbouw - ecologie - food supply - food consumption - environmental impact - food industry - sociology - agriculture - ecology
This edited volume presents and reflects upon empirical evidence of ‘sustainability’-induced and -related transition in food practices. The material collected in the various chapters contributes to our understanding of the ways in which ideas and preferences, sociotechnological developments and changes in the governance of food interact and become visible in practices of consumption, retail and production.
|Technology and social theory
Matthewman, S. - \ 2011
Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan (Themes in social theory ) - ISBN 9780230577565 - 206
technologie - sociologie - theorie - innovaties - technology - sociology - theory - innovations
|Justicia Hídrica: acumulación, conflicto y acción social
Boelens, R.A. ; Cremers, L. ; Zwarteveen, M.Z. - \ 2011
Impreso en Perú : Justicia Hídrica, IEP Instituto de Estudios Peruanos, Fondo Editorial PUCP (Serie Agua y sociedad : Sección justicia hidrica ) - ISBN 9789972513121 - 476
watervoorraden - toegangsrecht - water - conflict - sociologie - waterbeheer - overheidsbeleid - liberalisatie - justitie - maatschappelijk middenveld - latijns-amerika - water resources - right of access - water - conflict - sociology - water management - government policy - liberalization - justice - civil society - latin america
|War and the Crisis of Youth in Sierra Leone
Peters, K. - \ 2011
Cambridge : Cambridge University Press (International African library 41) - ISBN 9781107004191 - 292
kinderen - oorlog - jeugd - plattelandsontwikkeling - geschiedenis - sociologie - levensomstandigheden - platteland - conflict - sierra leone - west-afrika - minst ontwikkelde landen - grondeigendom - children - war - youth - rural development - history - sociology - living conditions - rural areas - conflict - sierra leone - west africa - least developed countries - land ownership
War and the Crisis of Youth in Sierra Leone addresses the currently incomplete understanding of the conflict in Sierra Leone by focusing on the direct experiences and interpretations of protagonists. The data presented challenges the widely canvassed notion of this conflict as a war motivated by "greed, not grievance," pointing instead to a rural crisis expressed in terms of unresolved tensions between landowners and marginalized rural youth, further reinforced and triggered by a collapsing patrimonial state.
"En momentos difíciles nosotros somos un pueblo" Haciendo política en la mixteca de Oaxaca: un estudio sobre el ritual, la pasión y el poder
Curiel Covarrubias, L.C. - \ 2011
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Georg Frerks, co-promotor(en): Monique Nuijten; Pieter de Vries. - [S.l.] : S.n. - ISBN 9789461731067 - 281
sociologie - politiek - organisatie - gewoonterecht - mexico - vs - migratie - sociology - politics - organization - customary law - mexico - usa - migration
In this thesis I decided to explain the re-functionalization of a socio-political organization regimen in a municipality located in the mixteca highlands of Oaxaca. I identified a series of events and conflicts that have been occurring since at least 15 years, and are related to the particular ways of organizing the social and political local life, known as customary law (Sistema de Usos y Costumbres-SUC). This local context is been affected by the migration to the Mexican-North American border, the incoming of federal and state financial resources as an outcome of the decentralization process, the legal recognition of the customary law in the Oaxacan Constitution, and the weakening of the influence and power of the PRI in the state. All together had form a temporal juncture since the middle 1990’s that has testified the fragmentation of the local political field. To explain this process and the relations between the different phenomena, fields of relations, actors and events is my general concern in this thesis.
The present work goes by explaining how the re-functionalization of the SUC occurs because the local political field fragmented since new emergent actors organized the people in groups around particular interests and political activism, pushing changes in the local ‚traditional‛ customs. But they also achieved to reinterpreted them to mobilize the affections and passions of the population. Also, the uses of certain discourses, practices of organization and ritualized spaces and events have been their means to achieve their goals. This have provoked the appearance of a hectic environment –specially in electoral periods- that expresses the transformations that this regime has been experienced in relation to the effects of more broader phenomena. My intention is to explain a process of change of this regimen of customary law in which new and different ways of doing politics can be observed, as well as the constitution of new local subjectivities. This happens also re-functionalizing pre-existing forms of social organization.
What I observed is that in the last years this organization regimen it’s been rationalized by new actors –emerging or previously excluded- who use discourses and practices coming out of this system –manipulating them and reinterpreting them- to participate in the new disputes and competitions for the local power, the municipal administration and the possession of ‚la costumbre‛ (the custom). These disputes take place in a fragmented and divided political field, appealing to the ‚pueblo‛ (the people) as a social entity unified and legitimate. These competitions occur between new actors grouped around leaders from political parties and social organizations, who had the capacity of destabilise the former status quo and subvert the control of the elite linked to the PRI.
Taking into account this temporal juncture, the effects of broader phenomena and what I observed during my fieldwork, I grouped my doubts and interests in these research aspects:
To expose the ways of doing politics within the process of re-functionalization of the SUC;
To show that politics has been done through the use (political, moral, ideological) of ‚la costumbre‛;
To expose the importance of the use of the discourse of ‚el pueblo‛ (as social entity) in the political struggles, and what it is expressing and meaning to who appeal to it;
To show how these ways of doing politics manifest the construction of subjectivities in a socio-political organization regime in a process of transformation.
What I present in this thesis is an extended case study (Mitchell, 2006 ). This is characterized by presenting fieldwork material organized in a time sequence (normally a long period of time) in which the same actor are involved in a series of situations and events in which their positions are redefine. Also is possible, through an extended case study, to illustrate how the ways of doing politics have been changed and how the actors involved have adapted the ideological dimension of the SUC in the context of competition, disputes and struggles for the local power. The choice of presenting the material in this way allows me to expose the analysis of a series of successive events in a period of 15 years.
I chose to do this through the analysis of discourses, practices and rituals spaces. I paid attention to the communal and public events such as assemblies and meetings but also I recur to many open and personalized interviews.
In the introduction of the thesis I expose the research problem and the way I constructed it. Also I draw on my theoretical approach, concepts and ideas about politics and the way I understand it for the purpose of this work. Also I explain the methodological path I constructed in order to develop my four main concerns.
In the second chapter I introduce the municipality of San Miguel Tlacotepec. I explain the history of the Customary Law system and its relation to Mexican politics (local and regional) and with the system of unique party. I include the particularities of this system in the ways of organized socially and politically the town. Also I explain the local institutions, its hierarchies and the role they play in the organization of the communitarian life in general. And the role domestic and international migration has been playing locally. The main goal of this chapter is to set the socio-historical context that prevails without to many and important changes for many years. Is in this context in which the firsts transformations were brewing.
I refer about these innovations in chapter 3. I illustrate the first important changes experienced in the field of the local politics. I explain how the fragmentation starts through the appearance of new actors that emerge from the experience of migration and return. They also participated in regional events that disrupt the regional politics, such as the developing of social organizations opponent to the PRI. In this context, the resources from the municipal decentralization program and the civil positions turned a coveted booty making the municipal elections the first big arena of confrontation and struggle between the new actors. I explain as well how the communal assemblies are consolidate as the legitimate organ of decision making and the new and different discourses start to emerge playing an important role in the disputes for the local power. As I expose this context from the middle of the 1990’s, I show how the trajectories of the actors developed and how new subjectivities appear in the process of reconfigure the local politics.
In chapter four I present an ethnography that show the importance of the antagonism among leaders y and organized groups as a central element to constitute the political field. I expose the kind of practices and discourses that participate –through the new leaders, activists, audience in the assemblies and confronted groups- in the dispute for ‚la costumbre‛ and how the idea of ‚el pueblo‛ was constituted -among the people who participate- and was used as a referent in the political conflict and also as a reaction to the fragmentation of the life in common. These changes also show the linkage –promote by the decentralization process- between the municipality and extra-communitarian institutions. This linkage is been reinforce through the influence the different actors have in those institutions and in the official decisions they take affecting the local dynamics of the municipality.
In chapter five the ethnography refers to the municipal election of 2007. I show the whole process of organization from the pre-electoral environment to the final resolution of the post-electoral conflict. This example is been used to demonstrate how the dispute, confrontation, personal interests and passions influenced the participation of the audience to that event. Is possible as well to observe how appealing to the customary law worked to promote personal interests, channelled the antagonism for this not to turn violence, and constitute an ideological resource that could keep the ‚pueblo‛ united in spite of division.
In chapter six I expose what apparently is a tense relation between the parish and the municipal authority. This relation occurs between the representatives of these local institutions and expresses, beyond the domestic affair, the kind of new relationship they have since the weakening of the local elite closed to the PRI and the rise of new actors who criticized the civil-religious relation. Through the ethnography of a disagreement about the use of the local chapel, my main interest is to show how the field of relationships and confrontations between these two institutions is an arena in which the representatives dispute the use of the discourse of ‚la costumbre‛ and its possession in order to win moral authority and prestige. This occurs through the strategic and instrumental use of certain rituals (from its organization to its accomplishment) and symbols, expressing the renew ways of doing politics in the changing context of the customary law system.
Chapter seven contains my final conclusions based on my findings, presented throughout these pages, and their relations to the ideas and notions that guided my reflections. This work deals with the new ways of doing politics in the light of a particular socio-political system of organization and the changes that migration, municipal decentralization, the legal recognition of the SUC and the reconfiguration of the regional political scenario brought to SMT’s politics. I show this process interpreting the re-functionalization of this system and its rationalization made by the actors who participate in the different spaces of the fragmented local political field. The observance of this process and the outcomes allow me to place this work in two different debates but related to each other: the effects of the transnational organizations en the origin communities and the possibility of the emerging of a democracy of ‚el pueblo‛ facing the ravages of a democratic unease that affects the Mexican politics in general.
To draw on the first of these debates, I argue how the transnational politics has been subordinate to the local and regional politics. In this case these two reinforce –through the leaders relations and influence- the links between the municipality and the extra-local institutions without promoting a transnational governance. The leaders arrived from the experience of transnational and domestic migration invested their experiences to reinforce their presence and influence in the local and regional political fields. This was achieved through the political used of different discourses, one of those completely new that brought the inhabitants of SMT around common concerns. This, I proposed, was expressed in a new way of politics –with the advent of a new kind of subjectivity- in which interests and concerns are shared, but also anxiety, unease and uncertainty. Even though there are some signs to discern a future panorama with place for the emergence and discussion of a ‚democracy of el pueblo‛.
Living together in multi-ethnic neighbourhoods; The meaning of public spaces for issues of social integration.
Peters, K.B.M. - \ 2011
Wageningen : Wageningen Academic Publishers - ISBN 9789086867462 - 251
sociology - neighbourhoods - netherlands - social integration - social problems - contemporary society - ethnic groups - immigration - immigrants - acculturation - sociologie - buurten - nederland - sociale integratie - sociale problemen - hedendaagse samenleving - etnische groepen - immigratie - immigranten - acculturatie
In Western societies, such as the Netherlands, people with different ethnic backgrounds live together in urban areas. This book examines daily life in multi-ethnic neighbourhoods and the meaning of public spaces for social integration. Through observations and interviews in two Dutch cities (Nijmegen and Utrecht) insight is gained into the use and perception of public spaces. Positive experiences in public spaces contribute to feeling at home in a multi-ethnic neighbourhood. Not only intense and lasting contacts, but also fleeting interactions contribute to feeling at home. Experience with diversity contributes to a realistic view of multiculturalism, a view that is based on everyday experiences, with all its positive and negative implications. This, however, does not mean that residents do not use stereotypes or categorizations. However, there is a major difference between the public discourse - which focuses on differences and problems - and everyday encounters, which are perceived as a way to experience and enjoy diversity. Recommendations are that politicians should look at the everyday realities in multi-ethnic neighbourhoods when discussing issues related to multi-ethnic societies. Repeatedly stressing the dichotomy between native and non-native Dutch citizens and focusing on problems, has a negative effect on the everyday lives of people because it produces and reproduces stereotyped images. Integration is not only about non-native Dutch residents adapting themselves to Dutch society: it is also about the extent to which people from various backgrounds live together and feel at home in their neighbourhood.
|Real Tourism; Practice, Care, and Politics in Contemporary Travel Culture
Minca, C. ; Oakes, T. - \ 2011
Oxford, UK : Routledge (Contemporary geographies of leisure, tourism and mobility 26) - ISBN 9780415582247 - 280
toerisme - reizen - theorie - toekomst - vrije tijd - sociologie - tourism - travel - theory - future - leisure - sociology
Over the past decade, tourism studies has broken out of its traditional institutional affiliation with business and management programs to take its legitimate place as an interdisciplinary social science field of cutting edge scholarship. The field has emerged as central to ongoing debates in social theory concerning such diverse topics as postcolonialism, mobility, and postmodernism, to name just a few. While there has been a diverse body of empirical research on this transformation the theoretical discussions in tourism studies remain largely attached to theories of modernity and Anglo-centric assumptions about tourism. There is a need for the field to come to terms theoretically with the contemporary and future realities of tourism as a truly global phenomenon. This book puts forward new postmodernist ideas and arguments about tourism today and in the future.