Watershed management in New South Wales, Australia: a case of constrained decentralisation?

Fidelman, Pedro I.J. (2006) Watershed management in New South Wales, Australia: a case of constrained decentralisation? In: 11th Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of Common Property . From: 11th Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of Common Property , 19-23 June 2006, Bali, Indonesia. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Decentralization includes different types of policy reforms aiming to shift powers from centralized to more localized institutions, such as sub-national units of administration, local government, the civil society and/or local user groups. It has gained increasing support, particularly in the realm of natural resources management (NRM). Moving towards more decentralized forms of NRM can, however, involve remarkable institutional challenges. Understanding the factors that can facilitate and/or constrain decentralization is, therefore, critical in overcoming such institutional challenges, as well as (re)designing and implementing more suitable policies. In Australia, catchment management – a watershed management initiative – is an example of moving decision-making for NRM from the State to the catchment (watershed) level. New South Wales (NSW) was the first Australian State to adopt catchment management as a state-wide statutory policy, in the late 1980s. Catchment management has since undergone a number of institutional changes. Specific legislation, for instance, have been introduced and reformed, such as the Catchment Management Act 1989, the Catchment Management Regulation 1999, and the Catchment Management Authorities Act 2003. Consequently, Catchment Management Committees, which operated in the 1990s were replaced by Catchment Management Boards in 2000, which in turn, have recently been replaced with Catchment Management Authorities. This paper presents preliminary findings from a broader study on the NSW catchment management initiative. The paper examines decentralized approaches to NRM as part of such a NSW initiative. Catchment management institutions are analyzed by applying the Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) framework in combination with the recent theorizing on decentralization of NRM.

Item ID: 10190
Item Type: Conference Item (Presentation)
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Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2010 05:22
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1605 Policy and Administration > 160507 Environment Policy @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9699 Other Environment > 969999 Environment not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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