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Rural commons and livelihood strategies in dry regions of India


  • Narpat Jodha


Rural common property resources (CPRs) in dry tropical areas of India form an important part of people's livelihood strategies, to adapt to harsh, stressful and high risk bio-physical conditions. However, despite their utility and contributions, CPRs have been neglected and declined in the recent decades, following economic, demographic and institutional changes. This has led to community's general disregard of rapidly degrading CPRs. Despite this general trend the CPRs are being productively rehabilitated by small user groups through focusing on specific CPR units in place of addressing the aggregates of CPRs. The paper reports this change by synthesizing the information collected from over 80 villages during 1982-85 and revisits during 1993-2003 to some of the earlier studied villages, in seven states falling in arid and semi-arid regions of India. The paper suggests the need for using the disaggregated approach to complement the usual aggregated approaches for better understanding of the dynamics of CPR change and their better management under the changing circumstances.

Suggested Citation

  • Narpat Jodha, 2008. "Rural commons and livelihood strategies in dry regions of India," The European Journal of Development Research, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 20(4), pages 597-611.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:eurjdr:v:20:y:2008:i:4:p:597-611
    DOI: 10.1080/09578810802464896

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    Cited by:

    1. Findlater, K.M. & Kandlikar, M., 2011. "Land use and second-generation biofuel feedstocks: The unconsidered impacts of Jatropha biodiesel in Rajasthan, India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3404-3413, June.
    2. Nguyen, Trung Thanh & Do, Truong Lam & B├╝hler, Dorothee & Hartje, Rebecca & Grote, Ulrike, 2015. "Rural livelihoods and environmental resource dependence in Cambodia," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 282-295.


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