Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

From Natural Resources to Natural Assets


Author Info

  • James Boyce
Registered author(s):


    This article examines the scope for strategies to build natural assets in the hands of low-income individuals and communities. Natural assets include sources of raw materials such as forests and fisheries, and the airsheds, lands, and water bodies that provide "environmental sinks" for the disposal of wastes. These resources become assets when people have rights to access their benefits. Four strategies for natural asset-building are identified: investment to increase the total stock of natural assets; redistribution to transfer natural assets from others; internalization to increase the ability of the poor to capture benefits generated by their stewardship of natural assets; and appropriation to establish rights for the poor to open-access resources. Building on the democratic principle that all individuals have equal rights to clean air, clean water, and other common heritage resources, these strategies simultaneously can advance the goals of poverty reduction, environmental protection, and environmental justice.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst in its series Published Studies with number ps13.

    as in new window
    Date of creation: 2001
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:uma:perips:ps13

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: 418 N Pleasant St, Amherst MA 01002
    Phone: (413) 545-6355
    Fax: (413) 545-2921
    Web page:
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research


    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
    as in new window
    1. Anderson, Johan & Vadnjal, Dan & Uhlin, Hans-Erik, 2000. "Moral dimensions of the WTA-WTP disparity: an experimental examination," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 153-162, January.
    2. Sunita Narain & Anil Agarwal, 2000. "Redressing Ecological Poverty Through Participatory Democracy: Case Studies from India," Working Papers wp36, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    3. Mark D. Shapiro & Steven M. Hassur & Nicholaas W. Bouwes, 2001. "Empowerment Through Risk-Related Information: EPA's Risk Screening Environmental Indicators Project," Working Papers wp18, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    4. K.A. Dixon, 2001. "Reclaiming Brownfields: From Corporate Liability to Community Asset," Working Papers wp10, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    5. James Boyce, 1994. "Inequality as a Cause of Environmental Degradation," Published Studies ps1, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    6. Brown, Thomas C. & Gregory, Robin, 1999. "Why the WTA-WTP disparity matters," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 323-335, March.
    7. Brooks, Nancy & Sethi, Rajiv, 1997. "The Distribution of Pollution: Community Characteristics and Exposure to Air Toxics," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 233-250, February.
    8. Boyce, James K., 1994. "Inequality as a cause of environmental degradation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 169-178, December.
    9. Manuel Pastor, 2004. "Building Social Capital to Protect Natural Capital: The Quest for Environmental Justice," Working Papers wp11, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. John Kurien, 2004. "The Blessing of the Commons: Small Scale Fisheries, Community Property Rights, and Coastal Natural Assets," Working Papers wp72, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    2. Kojo Sebastian Amanor, 2003. "Natural and Cultural Assets and Participatory Forest Management in West Africa," Working Papers wp75, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    3. John Kurien, 2003. "The blessing of the commons: Small-scale fisheries, community property rights and coastal natural assets," Centre for Development Studies, Trivendrum Working Papers 349, Centre for Development Studies, Trivendrum, India.
    4. John Kurien, 2010. "The Blessing of the Commons: Small-scale Fisheries, Community Property Rights and Coastal Natural Assets," Working Papers id:2988, eSocialSciences.


    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.


    Access and download statistics


    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uma:perips:ps13. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Judy Fogg).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.