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Conflict Management, Decentralization and Agropastoralism in Dryland West Africa


  • Turner, Matthew D.
  • Ayantunde, Augustine A.
  • Patterson, Kristen P.
  • Patterson, E. Daniel


This paper reports on a four-site study conducted in the Sahelian zone of Niger. The study takes a novel mixed methods approach for understanding conflict management from the perspective of rural peoples by not only describing past highly publicized conflicts but also by analyzing the steps rural peoples follow to management disagreements that arise in their everyday lives. This “bottom-up” approach reveals both a capacity and preference among our informants to manage disagreements informally without involving village or extra-village authorities. Decentralization initiatives, by reworking the authority and responsibilities of authority-based systems, affect the role that these informal mechanisms, as mediated by social norms and relations, play in conflict management.

Suggested Citation

  • Turner, Matthew D. & Ayantunde, Augustine A. & Patterson, Kristen P. & Patterson, E. Daniel, 2012. "Conflict Management, Decentralization and Agropastoralism in Dryland West Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 745-757.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:40:y:2012:i:4:p:745-757
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2011.09.017

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Agrawal, Arun & Gibson, Clark C., 1999. "Enchantment and Disenchantment: The Role of Community in Natural Resource Conservation," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 629-649, April.
    2. Benjamin, Charles E., 2008. "Legal Pluralism and Decentralization: Natural Resource Management in Mali," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 2255-2276, November.
    3. Matthew Turner & Augustine Ayantunde & Kristen Patterson & E. Daniel Patterson, 2011. "Livelihood Transitions and the Changing Nature of Farmer-Herder Conflict in Sahelian West Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(2), pages 183-206.
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    Cited by:

    1. Larsen, Rasmus Kløcker & Mamosso, Christiane Alzouma, 2014. "Aid with Blinkers: Environmental Governance of Uranium Mining in Niger," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 62-76.
    2. Fernández-Giménez, María E. & Batkhishig, Baival & Batbuyan, Batjav & Ulambayar, Tungalag, 2015. "Lessons from the Dzud: Community-Based Rangeland Management Increases the Adaptive Capacity of Mongolian Herders to Winter Disasters," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 48-65.
    3. Cees De Haan & Etienne Dubern & Bernard Garancher & Catalina Quintero, . "Pastoralism Development in the Sahel," World Bank Other Operational Studies, The World Bank, number 24228, September.
    4. Larson, Anne M. & Cronkleton, Peter J. & Pulhin, Juan M., 2015. "Formalizing Indigenous Commons: The Role of ‘Authority’ in the Formation of Territories in Nicaragua, Bolivia, and the Philippines," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 70(C), pages 228-238.
    5. Ayantunde, Augustine A. & Cofie, Olufunke. & Barron, Jennie, 2018. "Multiple uses of small reservoirs in crop-livestock agro-ecosystems of Volta basin: Implications for livestock management," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 204(C), pages 81-90.
    6. Onuorah Hyacinth, Edeh & Mavrotas, George, 2018. "Examining perceived land tenure security and dispute resolution pathway preferences among landholders: Implications for land governance reforms in Nigeria," 92nd Annual Conference, April 16-18, 2018, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 273500, Agricultural Economics Society.

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