Lecture 08 Class Notes

Mon, Oct 4 (Class 8): Institutions and Governance 2 (Princen)

international institutions

local-global linkages

non-state actors, networks


* (Ctools) "The World Commission on Dams Report: What Next?," Katherine Kao Cushing, pp.149-155, 171-172, The World's Water, 2002-2003.
* (Ctools) Conca, Ken, “Expert Networks: The Elusive Quest for Integrated Water Resources Management,” pp. 123-143, 158-165, Governing Water: Contentious Transnational Politics and Global Institution Building (2006).

  • Bellah: “When we think about something like sustainability, the most profound thinking is done by individuals thinking as institutions.”
    • Why is this significant quote? The lecture notes will tell you.
  • Institution definition from class: Set of norms, principles, and behaviors around which individuals make decisions.
  • Local Institution: Common pool resources game that was played in prior class was our exercise with it. We were playing a game in four corners for a period of time, and then the boundaries were taken away, making the pennies a common pool resource. Some groups had a mad scramble to get the most for themselves. Some groups had a way of managing the open access possessed by all to that scarce resource.
    • Options that the groups had for managing the open access:
      • Put the ropes back and re-privatize
      • Have an all powerful government authority put rules bak on to the game
      • Devise self rule for regulation
    • Until recently, most intellectuals believed that the only options were privatization or all powerful outside authority. Ostrom and Dietz showed that there were other options, in particular, option 3 (self-rule)
  • If institutions can be managed by self rules, why not scale these up?
    • Couldn’t the larger territory be subdivided into smaller parts that are each managed by their own rules?
    • Couldn’t the local be nested in the international institution?
    • The management of common pool resources, particularly on the international level, are much more messy.
    • Larger institution is lose the face to face factor; the eyes to acres ratio…more details to follow
    • The Conca article gives a good sense for how the international debate over the goverenance of common pool resources developed over the last 40 years.
  • International Institutions: Perspectives on how the word is used
    • International means foreign – anything that is not domestic
    • Inter-national: between nations, such as diplomacy
    • Transnational: People who cross boundaries o create an institution beyond domestic.
      • Non state governmental actors become increasingly important in this environment, aided by the proliferation of globalization.
    • Global Geography: all global relations are to a certain extent in a state of anarchy, because there is no over arching institution to control all countries. There is no overarching system of rules.
    • Why is this important?
      • There are many ways of interacting between countries. There is the channel of governments, but there are also professional, technical networks like the ones that seeded the IWRN. These expert networks consisted of people who worked for and advised governments, but were not delegates themselves.
  • Dam building reflects an evolution in the norms – related to the Cushing and Conca readings.
    • Traditional view of dams was to ensure that there were enough economic benefit, and if there was, then they built.
    • During the 1990’s the number of actors expanded and with that, the norms changed, which is reflected in the sum of the Cushing and Conca readings. In sum, the two articles suggest the following changes to the principles:
      • Rights: When a whole new group of people were allowed to participate in the decision making process, it was a huge change from the traditional level of access, and thus a huge change in the normative rules of the regime
      • Assessment: Previously had only done the costs and benefits, but now were taking into consideration a much broader range of topics. Certainly an advancement from the river based accounting done by early us dam builders.
      • Nesting: Put the rules for an institution with the larger structure
      • Priorities: All stakeholders should have an active wing for participation
      • Assessment: Need to non-dam options more thoroughly, like in the debate over Twin Forks.
      • Joint negotiation: Harder to do, but since there are more stakeholders it is a necessity.