SJSU Economics Common Property Discussion

User Generated





discussing the possible use of the common property to address the
common problem. Please develop your discussion within the context of Cinner and customary marine
tenure in the Indo-Pacific. Note: Use both Hardin and Waid as references to support your ideas. 

Unformatted Attachment Preview

Copyright © 2005 by the author(s). Published here under license by the Resilience Alliance. Cinner, J. 2005. Socioeconomic factors influencing customary marine tenure in the Indo-Pacific. Ecology and Society 10(1): 36. [online] URL: Research Socioeconomic factors influencing customary marine tenure in the Indo-Pacific Joshua Cinner1 ABSTRACT. For generations communities in the Western Pacific have employed a range of resource management techniques (including periodic reef closures, gear restrictions, entry limitations, and the protection of spawning aggregations) to limit marine resource use. Localized control over marine resources, commonly known as customary marine tenure (CMT), is the legal and cultural foundation for many of these practices. Because of their perceived potential to meet both conservation and community goals, these traditional resource management techniques are being revitalized by communities, governments, and NGOs as an integral part of national and regional marine conservation plans in the Pacific. However, the viability of conservation strategies built on a foundation of marine tenure may be in question, as it remains unclear whether marine tenure systems will be able to withstand the profound social and economic changes sweeping the Pacific region. Numerous studies have suggested that changes in marine tenure are attributed to social and economic factors, however, specific relationships between socioeconomic conditions and marine tenure are still not well understood. This paper examines the social and economic characteristics of 21 coastal communities in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia, and explores the characteristics of the communities that employ exclusive marine tenure to answer the following questions: Which socioeconomic factors are related to the presence of CMT regimes? How might socioeconomic factors influence the ability of communities to employ or maintain CMT regimes? Distance to market, immigration, dependence on fishing, and conflicts were found to be related to the presence of highly exclusive marine tenure systems. Exploring these relationships will help conservation practitioners better understand how future social changes may influence the foundation of conservation and development projects. Key Words: customary marine tenure; common-property; socioeconomic; Papua New Guinea; Indonesia. INTRODUCTION Contrary to Western society's propensity toward managing marine resources as open-access situations, another paradigm of common ocean governance called Customary Marine Tenure (CMT) is prevalent in parts of the Pacific. Under CMT, access to inshore marine resources is generally controlled by social units including individuals, families, clans or other kinship-based institutions, and villages (Carrier 1987, Ward 1997). These marine tenure institutions can range from relatively simple communally-owned marine areas from which outsiders are excluded to the complex and overlapping system of individual and family rights to space, species, gear, and even specific 1 James Cook University techniques of using gear described by Carrier (1987) and Cinner et al. (in press a) in the Manus province of Papua New Guinea (PNG). Although CMT has been documented throughout the World (Hviding 1996), it has reached the highest level of development in the Western Pacific (Ruddle and Akimichi 1984), including Japan (Ruddle 1985), Melanesia (Malinowski 1935, Hviding 1983, 1996, Wright 1985, Carrier 1987, Aswani 1999, 2002, Cooke et al. 2000, Foale and Macintyre 2000, Hickey and Johannes 2002), Polynesia (Hoffmann 2002), Micronesia (Johannes 1981, Zann 1985), Indonesia (Polunin 1984, Mantjoro 1996, Ruttan 1998, Harkes and Novaczek 2002), and Australia (Johannes and MacFarlane 1984). Legal recognition of marine tenure regimes can vary significantly Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 between countries. For example, in PNG customary ownership of marine resources is formally recognized in the constitution (Hyndman 1993). Alternatively, much of neighboring Indonesia is open-access. However, in some northern and eastern regions of Indonesia (i.e., parts of Muluku, North Sulawesi, and West Papua provinces), de facto marine tenure systems still govern local access to marine resources (see Polunin 1984, Mantjoro 1996, Ruttan 1998, Harkes and Novaczek 2002). In response to the degradation of inshore marine resources in many Pacific countries, governments and conservation groups are examining whether and how CMT regimes can be integrated into the modern conservation context (Cooke et al. 2000, Hoffmann 2002, Johannes 2002). CMT is particularly important in the context of resource management because it can serve as the legal and cultural foundation for other taboos such as gear prohibitions and spatial restrictions (Ruddle 1998, Aswani and Hamilton 2004). Where CMT is recognized, the highly decentralized authority over marine resources can also facilitate rapid adaptive response to changes in ecological or social conditions because decisions about limiting resource use can be made without the process of involving a centralized bureaucracy. Basing resource conservation initiatives around marine tenure regimes is particularly attractive to conservation organizations and donors because enforcement of specific fishing regulations within a tenure is generally the responsibility of the resource owner (Asafu-Adjaye 2000). By empowering community self-enforcement of fisheries regulations, CMT may provide a costeffective means to reduce the burden on government intervention, regulation, and enforcement (Johannes 1981, Hviding 1996, Ruddle 1998). This is particularly important in the economic context of the Pacific where fisheries departments are typically understaffed and under-funded (Johannes 1981). Customary tenure regimes are the foundation of marine governance in much of the Pacific, but they must be better understood if they are to be effectively incorporated in resource management and development initiatives. In particular, very little is known about the social and economic frameworks that allow communities to employ or maintain CMT regimes. An array of theoretical and empirical research has shown that common property governance systems can be affected by socioeconomic factors such as religious or cultural homogeneity (Ostrom 1990), market influences (Hviding 1996, Henrich et al. 2001), transaction costs of decision-making (Ostrom 1990, Sumalde 2004), dependence on resources (Lise 2000, Agrawal 2001, Zanetell and Knuth 2004), social capital (Pretty and Ward 2001, Pretty 2003, Pretty and Smith 2004), conflicts (Polunin 1984, Adams et al. 2003) settlement patterns (Aswani 2002, Aswani and Hamilton 2004), and resource variability (see Agrawal 2002 for a comprehensive review of the factors influencing the emergence and successful functioning of common property institutions). The studies specific to CMT suggest that many of these social and economic factors can influence the nature and function of marine tenure institutions (Pollnac 1984, Polunin 1984, Baines 1989, Watson 1989, Hviding 1996, Cooke et al. 2000, Foale and Macintyre 2000, Aswani 2002), although specific relationships between socioeconomic conditions and CMT are sometimes contradictory and are still not well understood. For example, Watson (1989) discusses how changing socioeconomic conditions can render resource management strategies ineffective and inappropriate. Alternatively, Hviding (1996) documents how marine tenure rules became more exclusive for both commercial and subsistence activities in the Morovo Lagoon in response to increased prices of particular shells. Here I ask the following questions: Which socioeconomic factors are related to the presence of CMT regimes? How might these socioeconomic factors influence the ability of communities to employ or maintain CMT regimes? To date, most research examining the social, economic, and cultural factors influencing CMT has utilized a relatively small number of cases or examined these issues over a very limited geographical area. Despite the important contributions that small n case studies have made toward understanding CMT regimes, a fundamental limitation of this approach is that it does not allow us to discern larger patterns in how CMT regimes may respond to social and economic factors over a wider geographical context. In this paper, I seek to complement the more detailed case studies on the subject by using a comparative approach to examine the potential socioeconomic factors influencing viable CMT institutions in 21 coastal communities in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia. Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 METHODS Data collection Between October 2001 and January 2003, research was conducted in 15 villages in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and six villages in North Sulawesi, Indonesia (Fig. 1). A number of criteria were used to select the study sites. Research was conducted as part of an interdisciplinary Wildlife Conservation Society project that assessed the effectiveness of coral reef conservation in the Indo-Pacific (Cinner et al. 2003; Cinner et al. in press b, McClanahan et al. unpublished data). Agrawal (2001, 2002) suggests that purposively selecting sites that have variation in theoretically significant variables is a defensible sampling methodology in a common-property research context. Study sites were purposively selected to encompass a wide range of social, economic, demographic, and resource governance conditions (e.g., varying degrees of remoteness, marine tenure, market influence, dependence on marine resources, etc.). However, as a result of the project's intent to integrate both socioeconomic and ecological data, site selection was constrained somewhat by the need to have comparable ecological parameters at each site (coral reef habitat, current regimes, exposure, etc.), access to SCUBA facilities (although live onboard dive boats were used to access two remote study sites in PNG and two in Indonesia), and project goals of examining several specific conservation sites of regional importance (e.g., Bunaken and Kilu). Based on the fact that the villages were not randomly selected, a cautious approach to interpreting the results would suggest that the conclusions drawn from this study are not necessarily applicable outside of the study sites. Research was conducted over an one to three week period per village using one to four trained local assistants to aid in data collection. I used theoretical and empirical research (e.g., Ostrom 1990, Carrier and Carrier 1991, Agrawal 2001, Aswani 2002; Pollnac and Johnson in press) and socioeconomic assessment methodologies designed for coastal communities (Pollnac 1998, Bunce et al. 2000, Pollnac and Crawford 2000) to select indicators that were expected to be related to marine resource governance in the Indo-Pacific and that were also feasible to collect during the limited research time at each site. These were: population, distance to markets, the percentage of fish bartered or sold in the market, the type of settlement pattern, dependence on marine resources, immigration, the presence of conflicts over marine resources, and the exclusivity of marine tenure regimes. A combination of systematic household surveys (for example, surveying every second or third household), semi-structured interviews with key informants (community leaders and resource users), recording of oral histories, transect walks (walking through the community with a local to identify and verify issues), participant observations, descriptions of daily and seasonal time-use, women’s focus groups, and analyses of secondary sources such as population censuses and fisheries records were all used to gather information and triangulate results. A total of 954 household surveys were collected. Sampling within villages was based on a systematic sample design, where a sampling fraction of every ith house (e.g. 2nd, 3rd, 4th) was determined by dividing the total village population by the sample size (Henry 1990, de Vaus 1991). Variance from the systematic sample was assumed to be equal to the estimated variance based on a simple random sample (Scheaffer et al. 1996). The number of surveys per community ranged from 15-84 (Table 1), depending largely on the population of the village, the number of available research assistants, and the available time per site (this was influenced by factors such as weather, the availability and frequency of transportation to certain sites, and budget requirements such as the cost of the boat used to access remote sites). The head of the household was interviewed. If the head of the household was not available, the household was revisited later. If the head of the household was still not available, another adult from the household was interviewed. The head of the household could have been either a male or female. In instances where it was appropriate, more than one member of the household was interviewed to obtain the most accurate information about specific subjects (for example, if a female headed the house but her eldest son was more knowledgeable about the household's fishing activities and practices, then he would be asked about the proportion of fish catch bartered or sold). Household surveys were used to gather the following indicators: dependence on fishing, immigration, population of the village, and the percentage of fish sold in the market. Dependence Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 Fig. 1. Map of study sites. on fishing was determined by having respondents list all the occupations the household engaged in for food or money. Respondents were then asked to rank these activities in order of importance. Those who regularly engaged in fishing estimated the percentage of their fish catch sold or bartered. Respondents were asked where they were from and were considered immigrants if they came from another village. Population was determined by: (1) counting the number of houses, (2) determining the average number of persons per household (adults and children) from the household surveys, and (3) multiplying this by the number of houses in the community. This was thought to be more accurate than relying on census information because the census record in one community reported almost twice as many houses as were actually counted. Key informants were selected using non-probability sampling techniques, including convenience sampling (for example, a respondent may be approached during resource use activities) or snowball sampling (where community members will suggest appropriate respondents) (Henry 1990). Between two and fifteen key informants were interviewed per village. Key informants also provided information on how exclusive the marine tenure was. Based on the key informant interviews Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 Table 1. Summary of study sites. Village Exclude Settlement Conflicts over Population Distance % non-own- pattern marine resto market immigrants ers ources (km) % of fish bartered or sold % ranked # of fishing as household primary occ- surveys upation Ahus yes nucleated yes 544 21 3.9 68 77 51 Andra yes nucleated yes 479 31 13.6 75 55 44 Gabagaba yes nucleated yes 1708 58 2.6 66 51 38 Kakarotan yes nucleated yes 730 100 2.0 24 27 48 Madina yes dispersed no 564 70 35.0 13 0 32 Muluk yes nucleated yes 333 69 7.5 44 5 41 Para yes dispersed yes 1513 46 27.0 69 56 59 Airbanua no dispersed no 687 45 32.6 52 12 43 Blongko no nucleated no 1332 32 51.9 44 8 77 Bunaken no dispersed yes 3122 16 20.5 72 37 73 Enuk no nucleated no 272 14 27.3 64 24 33 Fissoa no dispersed no 287 85 14.0 18 0 31 Kapitu no dispersed no 1791 60 57.1 66 18 84 Kilu no dispersed no 584 17 25.0 31 0 40 Kranget no nucleated no 2127 1 29.7 67 35 37 Mongol no nucleated no 493 0 64.3 35 18 28 Nusa Lik no nucleated no 273 1 46.2 69 54 15 Patanga no dispersed no 421 20 26.8 26 0 41 Riwo no dispersed no 1136 7 10.8 56 24 37 Tubuseria no nucleated no 5000 25 12.8 NA 18 61 Wadau no nucleated no 324 66 10.0 38 2 41 NA= not available and confirmed observations, villages were classified based on whether they: (1) practiced highly exclusive marine tenure regimes in which non-owners had to ask permission to access marine resources (classified as "strong" or "highly exclusive" marine tenure), or (2) had less exclusive or no marine tenure regimes in which non-owners regularly and openly accessed marine resources without asking permission (classified as "weak" or "less exclusive" marine tenure). Situations in which neighboring villages (non-owners) had been granted revocable use privileges and regularly accessed marine resources were also classified as less exclusive. Although this compartmentalization Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 of a wide range of marine tenure regimes into comparable categories have undoubtedly lead to overly simplistic interpretations of their true complexities (Hviding 1996, McCay and Jentoft 1998), it is hoped that this will be outweighed by the ability to examine how marine tenure is related to different social and economic factors that can be captured best through a broader-scale comparative study. Key informants and secondary sources provided information on the presence of serious or significant conflicts over marine resources. I defined conflicts as intense verbal confrontations, use of violence, or court cases. Communities that reported conflicts over the previous 12 months or had court cases pending were considered to have conflicts. Key informants also provided information on the nearest market where marine products were regularly bought and sold. The distance from the village to markets were measured on topographic maps and nautical charts. Communities were grouped into two types of settlement patterns: dispersed or nucleated. Dispersed settlements were communities that were spread out and contained distinct sub-villages that were geographically separated. For example, the community of Riwo in Madang, PNG, had subvillages on two separate islands and was thus considered a dispersed settlement. Nucleated settlements were communities that were relatively contiguous. Analyses The socioeconomic characteristics of communities that excluded all non-owners from accessing resources within their tenure were compared to the characteristics of communities where non-owners were allowed to access marine resources. Four types of analyses were performed to discern whether the presence of highly exclusive marine tenure was related to socioeconomic factors: the Mann Whitney U test, Fisher's Exact test, effect size, and statistical power. The SPSS 11.01 statistical program was used to determine statistical significance with the MannWhitney U and Fisher's Exact tests. The MannWhitney U test is a non-parametric alternative to the T-test, which is used to test whether two samples are independent (Siegel and Castellan 1988). The Mann-Whitney U test was used to examine whether ordinal or interval socioeconomic characteristics of communities with highly exclusive tenure were significantly different from communities with low excludability. For example, I used the Mann Whitney U test to compare the mean (rank of) percentage of immigrants in communities with highly exclusive marine tenure to the mean (rank of) percentage of immigrants in communities with weaker marine tenure. The frequency of dichotomous data (i.e., settlement patterns and the presence of conflicts) in communities with strong marine tenure was compared to communities with weak marine tenure using a Fisher’s Exact test. The Fisher’s Exact test is a non-parametric analysis used to discern whether two samples are independent based on the frequency of observed responses in a 2 x 2 contingency table with small independent samples (Siegel and Castellan 1988). Liberal p values were accepted for determining statistical significance (p3,000). The population levels of many of the study sites were similar to many rural coastal areas in the provinces studied (e.g., National Statistics Office 2002a, b), however, urbanized areas with high populations were not examined. An interesting area of further inquiry would be to examine whether or how communities with tens of thousands of residents could support highly exclusive marine tenure regimes. Aswani (2002), and Aswani and Hamilton (2004) also speculated that nucleated and dispersed settlement patterns influenced whether and how communities in the Solomon Islands could develop and maintain marine tenure regimes. Although this study was not able to explore in-depth ethnographic accounts of settlement histories, no relationship was found between settlement patterns and the strength of marine tenure institutions. In the broader context, this suggests that whether communities are nucleated or dispersed may be less important than other socioeconomic factors in maintaining marine Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 tenure regimes. One of the initial concerns with this study was that national or regional factors might overshadow the village level factors examined. However, this did not appear to be the case: there were few significant differences in socioeconomic characteristics between the two countries and several adjacent or nearby communities reported different marine tenure regimes, supporting the notion that marine tenure can vary in response to village-level factors and is not only a product of regional sociocultural influences. For example, Madina and Fissoa were nearby communities of a common language group, but Madina had high excludability and Fissoa had low excludability. Another potential concern was that intersite variability in the resource might have been very high, which could conceivably influence the nature of the marine tenure institutions. Incorporating the ecological criteria in site selection provided a reasonable assurance that relatively little variance existed in the resources within each tenure (i.e., the tenure areas all contain comparable coral reefs in similar ecological zones). Furthermore, we can infer from other analyses of the resources within these sites (Cinner et al. unpublished data; Cinner et al. in press-b; Cinner and McClanahan unpublished data) that many of the commercially valuable species harvested within the tenure sites such as trochus, beche de mer, and reef fish have small home ranges (e.g., on the scale of hectares to kilometers) (Kramer and Chapman 1999) congruent to the scale of the tenure areas. Therefore, the possible variance in resource conditions is expected to have relatively little influence in the observed tenure institutions. Speculation This study was able to tease out several indicators that were of more importance than others and provide qualitative descriptions of how these factors may be related to the presence of CMT. The limitations inherent in the non-random design of this study mean these results apply only to these study sites and should not be generalized to the wider region. Keeping in mind the limitations of this study's methodology, it is important to speculate on whether and how these regimes will be able to adapt and respond to changes in socioeconomic conditions. Marine tenure systems are dynamic institutions that, through adaptation to changing scenarios, have proven relatively robust to population pressures and aspects of economic and political modernization (Hviding 1998). However, Asia-Pacific is a region undergoing profound social, economic, and demographic changes (UNEP 2002), and there may be social forces that marine tenure regimes are unable to adapt to. Results from this study suggest that socioeconomic changes that will increase immigration, open new markets, and decrease dependence on marine resources may influence the ability of communities to employ or maintain exclusive marine tenure regimes. Under these scenarios, conservation and development strategies that rely on high excludability in a community's tenure may become challenged at their foundation. Alternatively, results from this study also suggest CMT may be somewhat resilient to other socioeconomic factors such as population growth. Highly exclusive CMT can operate in communities with populations of 1,700, but strong CMT is related to low levels of immigration. This suggests that high endogenous population growth (i.e., not from immigration) in smaller communities may not affect the ability to employ viable marine tenure. The next research challenge is to address the applicability of these results to the wider region. A random selection of villages that could be considered representative of the region would be desirable for future studies. Another research priority is determining what specific aspects of these variables influence marine tenure. For example, high immigration may cause confusion over use rights, disrupt traditional information exchange mechanisms, and/or introduce new ideas that challenge traditional practices. A better understanding of how these factors influence marine tenure regimes will allow development and conservation organizations to target capacity building and other activities to potentially increase the resilience of Pacific conservation strategies against the forces of social change. Responses to this article can be read online at: Acknowledgments: I thank the people and leaders of all 21 villages for Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 allowing me to work in their communities. Thanks to LIPI, the PNG National Research Council, PNG Department of Environment and Conservation, and the PNG National Fisheries Authority. The David and Lucille Packard Foundation supported this research through the Wildlife Conservation Society. Thanks to S. Sutton, R. Arthur, J. Carrier, and three anonymous reviewers for reviewing this manuscript and providing extremely helpful and constructive comments. LITERATURE CITED Adams, W., D. Brockington, J. Dyson, and B. Vira. 2003. Managing tragedies: understanding conflict over common pool resources. Science 302:1915-1916. Agrawal, A. 2002. Common resources and institutional stability in E. Ostrom, T. Dietz, N. Dolsak, P. Stern, S. Stonich, and E. Weber, editors. The drama of the commons. National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., USA. Agrawal, A. 2001. Common property institutions and sustainable governance of resources. World Development 29:1649-1672. Asafu-Adjaye, J. 2000. Customary marine tenure systems and sustainable fisheries management in Papua New Guinea. International Journal of Socio Economics 27:917-926. Baines, G. 1989. Traditional resource management in the Melanesian South Pacific: a development dilemma. Pages 54-69 in F. Berkes, editor. Common property resources: ecology and community-based sustainable development. Belhaven Press, London, England. Bardhan, P., and J. Dayton-Johnson. 2002. Unequal irrigators in E. Ostrom, T. Dietz, N. Dolsak, P. Stern, S. Stonich, and E. Weber, editors. The drama of the commons. National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., USA. Bunce, L., P. Townsley, R. S. Pomeroy, and R. B. Pollnac. 2000. Socioeconomic manual for coral reef management. Australian Institute of Marine Science, Townsville, Australia. Carrier, J. 1987. Marine tenure and conservation in Papua New Guinea. Pages 143-167 in B. McCay, and J. Acheson, editors. The Question of the commons: the culture and ecology of common resources. The University of Arizona Press, Tucson, Arizona, USA. Carrier, J., and A. Carrier. 1991. Structure and process in a Melanesian society: Ponam's progress in the twentieth century. Harwood Academic Publishers, Paris, France. Carrier, J., and A. Carrier. 1989. Wage, trade, and exchange in Melanesia: a Manus society in the modern state. University of California Press, Berkeley, California, USA. Aswani, S., and R. Hamilton. 2004. Integrating indigenous ecological knowledge and customary sea tenure with marine science and social science for conservation of bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum) in the Roviana Lagoon, Solomon Islands. Environmental Conservation 31:69-83. Cinner, J., J. Ben, and M. Marnane. 2003. How socioeconomic monitoring can assist marine reserve management: Kimbe Bay, Papua New Guinea in C. Wilkinson, and A. Green, editors. Monitoring coral reef marine protected areas. Australian Institute for Marine Science, Townsville, Australia. Aswani, S. 2002. Assessing the effects of changing demographic and consumption patterns on sea tenure regimes in the Roviana Lagoon, Solomon Islands. AMBIO 31:272-284. Cinner, J., T. H. Clark, M. Marnane, T. McClanahan, and J. Ben. In press a. Trade, tenure, and tradition: influence of sociocultural factors on resource use in Melanesia. Conservation Biology. Aswani, S. 1999. Common property models of sea tenure: a case study from the Roviana and Vonavona Lagoons, New Georgia, Solomon Islands. Human Ecology 27:417-453. Cinner, J., M. Marnane, T. McClanahan, and T. H. Clark. In press b. Conservation and community benefits from traditional coral reef management at Ahus Island, Papua New Guinea. Conservation Biology. Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 Cohen. 1988. Statistical Power Analysis for Behavioral Sciences. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, New Jersey, USA. Hoffmann, T. C. 2002. The reimplementation of the Ra'ui: coral reef management in Rarotonga, Cook Islands. Coastal Management 30:401-418. Cooke, A. J., N. V. C. Polunin, and K. Moce. 2000. Comparative assessment of stakeholder management in traditional Fijian fishing-grounds. Environmental Conservation 27:291-299. Hviding, E. 1998. Contextual flexibility: present status and future of customary marine tenure in Solomon Islands. Ocean and Coastal Management 40:253-269. de Vaus, D. A. 1991. Surveys in social research. UCL, London, England. Hviding, E. 1996. Guardians of the Marovo Lagoon: Practice, place, and politics in maritime Melanesia. University Press of Hawai'i, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. Evans, S. M., M. E. Gill, A. S. W. Retraubun, J. Abrahamz, and J. Dangeubun. 1997. Traditional management practices and the conservation of the gastropod (Trochus nilitocus) and fish stocks in the Maluku Province (Eastern Indonesia). Fisheries Research 31:83-91. Foale, S., and M. Macintyre. 2000. Dynamic and flexible aspects of land and marine tenure at West Nggela: implications for marine resource management. Oceania 71:30-45. Glaesel, H. 2000. State and local resistance to the expansion of two environmentally harmful marine fishing techniques in Kenya. Society and Natural Resources 13:321-338. Gliner, J., G. Vaske, and G. Morgan. 2001. Null Hypothesis significance testing: effect size does matter. Human Dimensions of Wildlife 6:291-301. Harkes, I., and I. Novaczek. 2002. Presence, performance, and institutional resilience of sasi, a traditional management institution in Central Maluku, Indonesia. Ocean and Coastal Management 45:237-260. Henrich, J., R. Boyd, S. Bowles, H. Gintis, C. Camerer, F. Ernst, and R. McElreath. 2001. In search of homo economicus: behavioral experiments in fifteen small-scale societies. American Economic Review 91:73-78. Henry, G. T. 1990. Practical sampling. Sage Publications, Newbury Park, California, USA. Hickey, F., and Johannes, R. E. 2002. Recent evolution of village-based marine resource management in Vanuatu. SPC Traditional Management Bulletin 14:8-21. Hviding, E. 1983. Keeping the sea: aspects of marine tenure in Marovo lagoon, Solomon Islands. Pages 9-44 in K. Ruddle, and R. E. Johannes, editors. Traditional marine resource management in the Pacific Basin: an anthology. UNESCO, Jakarta, Indonesia. Hyndman, D. 1993. Sea tenure and the management of living marine resources in Papua New Guinea. Pacific Studies 16:99-114. Johannes, R. E. 2002. The renaissance of community-based marine resource management in Oceania. Annual Review of Ecological Systems 33:317-340. Johannes, R. E. 1981. Words of the lagoon: fishing and marine lore in the Palau district of Micronesia. University of California Press, Berkeley, California, USA. Johannes, R. E., and J. W. MacFarlane. 1984. Territorial sea rights in the Torres Strait Islands with emphasis on Murry Island in K. Ruddle, and T. Akimichi, editors. Maritime institutions in the Western Pacific. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. Kramer, D. L., and M. R. Chapman. 1999. Implications of fish home range size and relocation for marine reserve function. Environmental Biology of Fishes 55:65-79. Lise, W. 2000. Factors influencing people's participation in forest management in India. Ecological Economics 34:379-392. Malinowski, B. 1935. Coral gardens and their magic. George Allen and Unwin, London, England. Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 Mantjoro, E. 1996. Management of traditional common fishing grounds: the experience of the Para community, Indonesia. Coastal Management 24:229-250. Guinean evidence. Pages 267-284 in K. Ruddle, and T. Akimichi, editors. Maritime institutions in the Western Pacific. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. McCay, B., and S. Jentoft. 1998. Market or community failure: critical perspectives on common property research. Human Organization 57:21-29. Pretty, J. 2003. Social capital and the collective management of resources. Science 302:1912-1914. National Statistics Office. 2002a. Census unit register: Madang province. National Statistics Office, Port Moresby. National Statistics Office. 2002b. Census unit register: Manus province. National Statistics Office, Port Moresby. Ostrom, E. 1990. Governing the commons: the evolution of institutions for collective action. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom. Pretty, J., and D. Smith. 2004. Social capital in biodiversity conservation and management. Conservation Biology 18:631-638. Pretty, J., and H. Ward. 2001. Social capital and the environment. World Development 29:209-227. Ruddle, K. 1998. The context of policy design for existing community-based fisheries management in the Pacific Islands. Ocean and Coastal Management 40:105-126. Pollnac, R. B. 1998. Rapid assessment of management parameters for coral reefs. University of Rhode Island, Coastal Resources Center, Narragansett, Rhode Island, USA. Ruddle, K. 1985. The continuity of traditional management practices: the case of Japanese coastal fishing. Pages 159-179 in K. Ruddle, and R. E. Johannes, editors. The traditional knowledge and management of coastal systems in Asia and the Pacific. United Nations Environmental and Cultural Organization, Jakarta Pusat, Indonesia. Pollnac, R. B. 1984. Investigating territorial use rights among fishermen. Pages 267-284 in K. Ruddle, and T. Akimichi, editors. Maritime Institutions in the Western Pacific. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. Ruddle, K., and T. Akimichi. 1984. Introduction in K. Ruddle, and T. Akimichi, editors. Maritime institutions in the Western Pacific. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. Pollnac, R. B., and B. Crawford. 2000. Assessing behavioral aspects of coastal resource use. Coastal Resources Center, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, Rhode Island, USA. Ruttan, L. M. 1998. Closing the commons: cooperation for gain or restraint? Human Ecology 26:43-66. Pollnac, R. B., B. R. Crawford, and M. Gorospe. 2001. Discovering factors that influence the success of community-based marine protected areas in the Visayas, Philippines. Ocean and Coastal Management 44:683-710. Pollnac, R. B., and J. C. Johnson. In press. Folk management and conservation of marine resources: towards a theoretical and methodological assessment in N. Kishigami, and J. Savelle, editors. Indigenous use and management of marine resources. National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. Polunin, N. V. C. 1984. Do traditional marine "reserves" conserve? A view of Indonesian and New Ruttan, L. M., and M. Borgerhoff Mulder. 1999. Are East African pastoralists truly conservationists? Current Anthropology 40:621-652. Scheaffer, R. L., W. I. Mendenhall, and L. Ott. 1996. Elementary survey sampling. Wadsworth, Belmont, California, USA. Siegel, S., and N. J. Castellan. 1988. Nonparametric statistics for the behavioral sciences. McGraw-Hill, New York, USA. Sumalde, Z. 2004. Transaction costs of community-based coastal resource management: the case of San Miguel Bay, Philippines. Coastal Management 32:51-60. Ecology and Society 10(1): 36 Sutinen, J. G., and K. Kuperan. 1999. A socioeconomic theory of regulatory compliance. International Journal of Socio Economics 26:174-193. UNEP. 2002. Global environmental outlook 3: past, present, and future perspectives. Earthscan Publications Ltd., London, England. Vaske, G., J. Gliner, and G. Morgan. 2002. Communicating judgements about practical significance: effect size, confidence intervals, and odds ratios. Human Dimensions of Wildlife 7:287-300. Ward, G. R. 1997. Changing forms of communal tenure. Page 13 in P. Larmour, editor. The governance of common property in the Pacific Region. National Centre for Development Studies, Australian Nation University, Canberra, Australia. Watson, D. 1989. The evolution of appropriate resource-management systems. Pages 54-69 in F. Berkes, editor. Common property resources: Ecology and community-based sustainable development. Belhaven Press, London, England. Wright, A. 1985. Marine resource use in Papua New Guinea: can traditional concepts and contemporary development be integrated? Pages 53-77 in K. Ruddle, and R. E. Johannes, editors. The traditional knowledge and management of coastal systems in Asia and the Pacific. United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Jakarta Pusat, Indonesia. Zanetell, B. A., and B. A. Knuth. 2004. Participation rhetoric or community-based management reality? Influences on willingness to participate in a Venezuelan freshwater fishery. World Development 32:793-807. Zann, L. P. 1985. Traditional management and conservation of fisheries in Kiribati and Tuvalu atolls. Pages 53-77 in K. Ruddle, and R. E. Johannes, editors. The traditional knowledge and management of coastal systems in Asia and the Pacific. United Nations Environmental and Cultural Organization, Jakarta Pusat, Indonesia. The Tragedy of the Commons Author(s): Garrett Hardin Source: Science, New Series, Vol. 162, No. 3859 (Dec. 13, 1968), pp. 1243-1248 Published by: American Association for the Advancement of Science Stable URL: Accessed: 05/02/2009 12:11 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use. Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained at Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printed page of such transmission. JSTOR is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1995 to build trusted digital archives for scholarship. We work with the scholarly community to preserve their work and the materials they rely upon, and to build a common research platform that promotes the discovery and use of these resources. For more information about JSTOR, please contact American Association for the Advancement of Science is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Science. What Shall We Maximize? The Tragedy of the Commons The population problem has no technical solution; it requires a fundamental extension in morality. Garrett Hardin At the end of a thoughtful article on the future of nuclear war, Wiesner and York (1) concluded that: "Both sides in the arms race are... confronted by the dilemma of steadily increasing military power and steadily decreasing national security. It is our considered professional judgment that this dilemma has no technical solution. If the great powers continue to look for solutions in the area of science and technology only, the result will be to worsen the situation." I would like to focus your attention not on the subject of the article (national security in a nuclear world) but on the kind of conclusion they reached, namely that there is no technical solution to the problem. An implicit and almost universal assumption of discussions published in professional and semipopular scientific journals is that the problem under discussion has a technical solution. A technical solution may be defined as one that requires a change only in the techniques of the natural sciences, demanding little or nothing in the way of change in human values or ideas of morality. In our day (though not in earlier times) technical solutions are always welcome. Because of previous failures in prophecy, it takes courage to assert that a desired technical solution is not possible. Wiesner and York exhibited this courage; publishing in a science journal, they insisted that the solution to the problem was not to be found in the natural sciences. They cautiously qualified their statement with the phrase, "It is our considered profesThe author is professor of biology, University of California, Santa Barbara. This article is based on a presidential address presented before the meeting of the Pacific Division of the American Association for the Advancement of Science at Utah State University, Logan, 25 June 1968. 13 DECEMBER 1968 sional judgment . . ." Whether they Population,as Malthus said, naturally tends to grow "geometrically,"or, as we would now say, exponentially. In a finite world this means that the per capita share of the world's goods must steadily decrease. Is ours a finite world? A fair defense can be put forward for the view that the world is infinite; or that we do not know that it is not. But, in terms of the practical problems that we must face in the next few generations with the foreseeable technology, it is clear that we will greatly increase human misery if we do not, during the immediatefuture, assume that the world available to the terrestrialhuman population is finite. "Space" is no escape (2). A finite world can support only a finite population; therefore, population growth must eventuallyequal zero. (The case of perpetual wide fluctuations above and below zero is a trivial variant that need not be discussed.) When this condition is met, what will be the situation of mankind?Specifically, can Bentham's goal of "the greatest good for the greatest number" be realized? No-for two reasons, each sufficient by itself. The first is a theoretical one. It is not mathematically possible to maximize for two (or more) variables at the same time. This was clearly stated by von Neumann and Morgenstern(3), but the principleis implicit in the theory of partial differential equations, dating back at least to D'Alembert (17171783). The second reason springs directly from biological facts. To live, any organism must have a source of energy (for example, food). This energy is utilized for two purposes: mere maintenance and work. For man, maintenance of life requires about 1600 kilocalories a day ("maintenancecalories"). Anything that he does over and above merely staying alive will be defined as work, and is supported by "work calories" which he takes in. Work calories are used not only for what we call work in common speech; they are also required for all forms of enjoyment, from swimming and automobile racing to playing music and writing poetry. If our goal is to maximize population it is obvious what we must do: We must make the work calories per person approach as close to zero as possible. No gourmet meals, no vacations, no sports, were right or not is not the concern of the present article. Rather, the concern here is with the importantconcept of a class of human problems which can be called "no technical solution problems," and, more specifically,with the identification and discussion of one of these. It is easy to show that the class is not a null class. Recall the game of ticktack-toe. Consider the problem, "How can I win. the game of tick-tack-toe?" It is well known that I cannot, if I assume (in keeping with the conventions of game theory) that my opponent understands the game perfectly. Put another way, there is no "technical solution" to the problem. I can win only by giving a radical meaning to the word "win." I can hit my opponent over the head; or I can drug him; or I can falsify the records. Every way in which I "win" involves, in some sense, an abandonment of the game, as we intuitively understand it. (I can also, of course, openly abandon the game-refuse to play it. This is what most adults do.) The class of "No technical solution problems" has members. My thesis is that the "populationproblem," as conventionally conceived, is a member of this class. How it is conventionallyconceived needs some comment. It is fair to say that most people who anguish over the population problem are trying to find a way to avoid the evils of overpopulation without relinquishingany of the privileges they now enjoy. They think that farming the seas or developing new strains of wheat will solve the problem-technologically. I try to show here that the solution they seek cannot be found. The population problem cannot be solved in a technical way, any more than can the problem of winning no music, no literature, no art. . . I the game of tick-tack-toe. think that everyone will grant, without 1243 argument or proof, that maximizing population does not maximize goods. Bentham's goal is impossible. In reaching this conclusion I have made the usual assumption that it is the acquisition of energy that is the problem. The appearance of atomic energy has led some to question this assumption. However, given an infinite source of energy, population growth still produces an inescapable problem. The problem of the acquisition of energy is replaced by the problem of its dissipation,as J. H. Fremlin has so wittily shown (4). The arithmetic signs in the analysis are, as it were, reversed; but Bentham'sgoal is still unobtainable. The optimum populationis, then, less than the maximum. The difficulty of defining the optimum is enormous; so far as I know, no one has seriously tackled this problem. Reaching an acceptable and stable solution will surely require more than one generation of hard analytical work-and much persuasion. We want the maximum good per person; but what is good? To one person it is wilderness, to another it is ski lodges for thousands. To one it is estuaries to nourish ducks for hunters to shoot; to another it is factory land. Comparing one good with another is, we usually say, impossible because goods are incommensurable.Incommensurables cannot be compared. Theoreticallythis may be true; but in real life incommensurablesare commensurable. Only a criterion of judgment and a system of weighting are needed. In nature the criterion is survival. Is it betterfor a species to be small and hideable, or large and powerful? Natural selection commensuratesthe incommensurables. The compromise achieved depends on a natural weighting of the values of the variables. Man must imitate this process. There is no doubt that in fact he already does, but unconsciously.It is when the hidden decisions are made explicit that the arguments begin. The problem for the years ahead is to work out an acceptable theory of weighting. Synergistic effects, nonlinearvariation, and difficulties in discounting the future make the intellectual problem difficult, but not (in principle) insoluble. Has any cultural group solved this practical problem at the present time, even on an intuitive level? One simple fact proves that none has: there is no prosperouspopulation in the world today that has, and has had for some 1244 time, a growth rate of zero. Any people that has intuitively identified its optimum point will soon reach it, after which its growth rate becomes an remains zero. Of course, a positive growth rate might be taken as evidence that a population is below its optimum. However, by any reasonable standards,the most rapidly growing populations on art today are (in general) the most miserable. This association(which need not be invariable)casts doubt on the optimistic assumptionthat the positive growthrate of a population is evidence that t has yet to reach its optimum. We can make little progressin working toward optimumpoulation size until we explicitly exorcize the spirit of Adam Smith in the field of practical demography. In economic affairs, The Wealth of Nations (1776) popularized the "invisible hand," the idea that an individual who "intends only his own gain," is, as it were, "led by an invisible hand to promote o . the public interest" (5). Adam Smith did not assert that this was invariably true, and perhaps neither did any of his followers. But he contributedto a dominant tendency of thought that has ever since interfered with positive action based on rational analysis, namely, the tendency to assume that decisions reached individually will, in fact, be the best decisions for an entire society. If this assumption is correct it justifies the continuance of our present policy of laissez-faire in reproduction.If it is correct we can assume that men will control their individual fecundity so as to produce the optimum population. If the assumption is not correct, we need to reexamine our individual freedoms to see which ones are defensible. Tragedy of Freedom in a Commons The rebuttal to the invisible hand in population control is to be found in a scenario first sketched in a little-known pamphlet(6) in 1833 by a mathematical amateur named William Forster Lloyd (1794-1852). We may well call it "the tragedy of the commons," using the word "tragedy" as the philosopher Whitehead used it (7): "The essence of dramatic tragedy is not unhappiness.It resides in the solemnity of the remorseless workingof things."He theregoes on to say, "This inevitableness of destiny can only be illustratedin terms of human life by incidents which in fact in- volve unhappines. For it is only by them that the futility of escape can be made evident in the drama." The tragedyof the commons develops inthis way. Picturo a pasture open to all It is to be expected that each herdsan will try to keep as many cattle as possible on the commons. Such an arrangement may work reasonably satisfactorily for centuries because tribal wars, poaching, and disease keep the numbers of both man and beast well below the carryingcapacity of the land. Finally, however, comes the day of reckoning, that is, the day when the long-desi ed goal of social stability becomes a reality. At this point, the inherent logic of the commons remorselessly generatestragedy. As a rational being, each herdsman seeks to maximize his gain. Explicitly or implicitly, more or less consciously, he asks, "What is the utility to me of adding one more animal to my herd?" This utility has one negative and one positive component. 1) The positive component is a function of the increment of one animal. Since the herdsman receives all the proceeds from the sale of the additional animal,the positive utility is nearly + 1. 2) The negative componentis a function of the additional overgrazing created by one more animal. Since, however, the effects of overgrazingare sharedby all the herdsmen,the negative utility for any particular decisionmaking herdsman is only a fraction of -1. Adding together the component partial utilities, the rational herdsman concludes that the only sensible course for him to pursue is to add another animal to his herd. And another; and another . . . But this is the conclusion reached by each and every rational herdsman sharing a commons. Therein is the tragedy. Each man is locked into a system that compels him to increase his herd without limit-in a world that is limited. Ruin is the destination toward which all men rush, each pursuing his own best interest in a society that believes in the freedom of the commons. Freedom in a commons brings ruin to all. Some would say that this is a platitude. Would that it were! In a sense, it was learned thousandsof years ago, but natural selection favors the forces of psychological denial (8). The individual benefitsas an individualfrom his ability to deny the truth even though society as a whole, of which he is a part, suffers. SCIENCE, VOL 162 Education can counteract the natural tendency to do the wrong thing, but the inexorable succession of generations requires that the basis for this knowledge be constantly refreshed. A simple incident that occurred a few years ago in Leominster,Massachusetts, shows how perishablethe knowledge is. During the Christmas shopping season the parking meters downtown were covered with plastic bags that bore tags reading:"Do not open until after Christmas. Free parking courtesy of the mayor and city council."In other words, facing the prospect of an increased demand for already scarce space, the city fathers reinstituted the system of the commons. (Cynically, we suspect that they gained more votes than they lost by this retrogressiveact.) In an approximateway, the logic of the commons has been understood for a long time, perhaps since the discovery of agriculture or the invention of private property in real estate. But it is understood mostly only in special cases which are not sufficientlygeneralized. Even at this late date, cattlemen leasing national land on the western ranges demonstrate no more than an ambivalentunderstanding,in constantly pressuringfederal authoritiesto increase the head count to the point where overgrazing produces erosion and weeddominance. Likewise, the oceans of the world continue to suffer from the survival of the philosophyof the commons. Maritime nations still respond automatically to the shibbolethof the "freedom of the seas." Professing to believe in the "inexhaustible resources of the oceans," they bring species after species of fish and whales closer to extinction (9). The National Parks present another instance of the working out of the tragedy of the commons. At present, they are open to all, without limit. The parks themselvesare limited in extentthere is only one Yosemite Valleywhereaspopulation seems to grow without limit. The values that visitors seek in the parks are steadily eroded. Plainly, we must soon cease to treat the parks as commons or they will be of no value to anyone. What shall we do? We have several options. We might sell them off as private property. We might keep them as public property, but allocate the right to enter them. The allocation might be on the basis of wealth, by the use of an auction system. It might be on the basis of merit, as defined by some agreed13 DECEMBER 1968 upon standards.It might be by lottery. Or it might be on a first-come, firstserved basis, administered to long queues. These, I think, are all the reasonable possibilities. They are all objectionable.But we must choose-or acquiesce in the destructionof the commons that we call our National Parks. was a boy, for there were not too many people. But as populationbecame denser, the natural chemical and biological recycling processes became overloaded, calling for a redefinition of property rights. How To Legislate Temperance? Pollution In a reverse way, the tragedy of the commons reappears in problems of pollution. Here it is not a question of taking something out of the commons, but of putting something in-sewage, or chemical, radioactive, and heat wastes into water; noxious and dangerous fumes into the air; and distracting and unpleasant advertising signs into the line of sight. The calculations of utility are much the same as before. The rational man finds that his share of the cost of the wastes he dischargesinto the commons is less than the cost of purifying his wastes before releasing them. Since this is true for everyone, we are locked into a system of "fouling our own nest," so long as we behave only as independent, rational, free-enterprisers. The tragedy of the commons as a food basket is averted by private property, or something formally like it. But the air and waters surroundingus cannot readily be fenced, and so the tragedy of the commons as a cesspool must be preventedby differentmeans, by coercive laws or taxing devices that make it cheaper for the polluter to treat his pollutants than to discharge them untreated. We have not progressed as far with the solution of this problem as we have with the first. Indeed, our particular concept of private property, which deters us from exhausting the positive resources of the earth, favors pollution. The owner of a factory on the bank of a stream-whose property extends to the middle of the stream-often has difficultyseeing why it is not his natural right to muddy the waters flowing past his door. The law, always behind the times, requires elaborate stitching and fittingto adaptit to this newly perceived aspect of the commons. The pollution problem is a consequence of population.It did not much matterhow a lonely American frontiersman disposed of his waste. "Flowing water purifiesitself every 10 miles," my grandfatherused to say, and the myth was near enough to the truth when he Analysis of the pollution problem as a function of population density uncovers a not generally recognized principle of morality, namely: the morality of an act is a function of the state of the system at the time it is performed (10). Using the commons as a cesspool does not harm the general public under frontier conditions, because there is no public; the same behavior in a metropolis is unbearable. A hundred and fifty years ago a plainsman could kill an Americanbison, cut out only the tongue for his dinner, and discard the rest of the animal. He was not in any important sense being wasteful. Today, with only a few thousand bison left, we would be appalled at such behavior. In passing, it is worth noting that the moralityof an act cannot be determined from a photograph.One does not know whether a man killing an elephant or setting fire to the grassland is harming others until one knows the total system in which his act appears. "One picture is worth a thousand words," said an ancient Chinese; but it may take 10,000 words to validate it. It is as tempting to ecologists as it is to reformersin general to try to persuade others by way of the photographic shortcut. But the essense of an argument cannot be photographed:it must be presented rationally -in words. That morality is system-sensitive escaped the attention of most codifiers of ethics in the past. "Thou shalt not . . ." is the form of traditional ethical directives which make no allowance for particular circumstances. The laws of our society follow the pattern of ancient ethics, and therefore are poorly suited to governinga complex, crowded, changeable world. Our epicyclic solution is to augment statutory law with administrativelaw. Since it is practically impossibleto spell out all the conditions under which it is safe to burn trash in the back yard or to run an automobile without smog-control, by law we delegate the details to bureaus. The result is administrativelaw, which is rightly feared for an ancient reason-Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?-"Who shall watch the watchers themselves?" John Adams said that we must have "a government of laws and not men." Bureau administrators, trying to evaluate the morality of acts in the total system, are singularly liable to corruption, producing a government by men, not laws. Prohibition is easy to legislate (though not necessarily to enforce); but how do we legislate temperance? Ex- perience indicates that it can be accomplished best through the mediation of administrativelaw. We limit possibilities unnecessarilyif we suppose that the sentiment of Quis custodiet denies us the use of administrativelaw. We should rather retain the phrase as a perpetual reminder of fearful dangers we cannot avoid. The great challenge facing us now is to invent the corrective feedbacks that are needed to keep custodians honest. We must find ways to legitimate the needed authority of both the custodians and the corrective feedbacks. Freedom To Breed; Is Intolerable The tragedy of the commons is involved in population problems in. another way. In a world governed solely by the principle of "dog eat dog"-if indeed there ever was such a world-how many children a family had would not be a matter of public concern. Parents who bred too exuberantly would leave fewer descendants, not more, because they would be unable to care adequately for their children. David Lack and others have found that such a negative feedback demonstrably controls the fecundity of birds (11). But men are not birds, and have not acted like them for millenniums, at least. If each human family were dependent only on its own resources; if the children of improvident parents starved to death; if, thus, overbreeding brought its own "punishment" to the germ linethen there would be no public interest in controlling the breeding of families. But our society is deeply committed to the welfare state (12), and hence is confronted with another aspect of the tragedy of the commons. In a welfare state, how shall we deal with the family, the religion, the race, or the class (or indeed any distinguishable and cohesive group) that adopts overbreeding as a policy to secure its own aggrandizement (13)? To couple the concept of freedom to breed with the belief that everyone born has an 12.46 equal right to the commons is to lock the world into a tragic course of action. Unfortunately this is just the course of action that is being pursued by the United Nations. In late 1967, some 30 nations agreed to the following (14): The Universal Declaration of Human Rights describes the family as the natural and fundamental unit of society. It follows that any choice and decision with regard to the size of the family must irrevocably rest with the family itself, and cannot be made by anyone else. It is painful to have to deny categorically the validity of this right; denying it, one feels as uncomfortable as a resident of Salem, Massachusetts, who denied the reality of witches in the 17th century. At the present time, in liberal quarters, something like a taboo acts to inhibit criticism of the United Nations. There is a feeling that the United Nations is "our last and best hope,"' that we shouldn't find fault with it; we shouldn't play into the hands of the archconservatives. However, let us not forget what Robert Louis Stevenson cipiens would become extinct and would be replaced by the variety Homo progenitivus" (16). The argument assumes that conscience or the desire for children (no matterwhich) is hereditary-but hereditary only in the most general formal sense. The result will be the same whether the attitude is transmitted through germ cells, or exosomatically, to use A. J. Lotka'sterm. (If one denies the latter possibility as well as the former, then what's the point of education?) The argument has here been stated in the context of the population problem, but it applies equally well to any instance in which society appeals to an individual exploiting a commons to restrain himself for the general good-by means of his conscience. To make such an appeal is to set up a selective system that works toward the eliminationof conscience from the race. Pathogenic Effects of Conscience said: "The truth that is suppressedby friends is the readiest weapon of the The long-term disadvantage of an to conscience should be enough enemy." If we love the truth we must appeal to condemn it; but has serious shortopenly deny the validityof the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, even term disadvantagesas well. If we ask a man who is exploiting a commons to though it is promoted by the United Nations. We should also join with desist "in the name of conscience," what are we saying to him? What does Kingsley Davis (15) in attempting to he hear?-not only at the moment but get Planned Parenthood-WorldPopulaalso in the wee small hours of the tion to see the error of its ways in emwhen, half asleep, he remembers night bracing the same tragic ideal. not merely the words we used but also the nonverbal communication cues we Conscience Is Self-Eliminating gave him unawares? Sooner or later, consciously or subconsciously,he senses It is a mistake to think that we can that he has received two communicacontrol the breeding of mankind in the tions, and that they are contradictory: long run by an appeal to conscience. (i) (intended communication) "If you Charles Galton Darwin made this point don't do as we ask, we will openly conwhen he spoke on the centennial of the demn you for not acting like a responpublication of his grandfather's great sible citizen"; (ii) (the unintended book. The argument is straightforward communication) "If you do behave as and Darwinian. we ask, we will secretly condemn you People vary. Confronted with appeals for a simpleton who can be shamed to limit breeding, some people will un- into standing aside while the rest of us doubtedly respond to the plea more exploit the commons." than others. Those who have more Everyman then is caught in what children will produce a larger fraction Bateson has called a "double bind." of the next generation than those with Bateson and his co-workers have made more susceptible consciences. The dif- a plausible case for viewing the double ference will be accentuated, generation bind as an importantcausative factor in the genesis of schizophrenia (17). The by generation. In C. G. Darwin's words: "It may double bind may not always be so well be that it would take hundreds of damaging, but it always endangers the generations for the progenitive instinct mental health of anyone to whom it is to develop in this way, but if it should applied. "A bad conscience," said do so, nature would have taken her Nietzsche, "is a kind of illness." To conjure up a conscience in others revenge, and the variety Homo contraSCIENCE, VOL. 162 is tempting to anyone who wishes to extend his control beyond the legal limits. Leaders at the highest level succumb to this temptation. Has any President during the past generation failed to call on labor unions to moderate voluntarilytheir demandsfor higher wages, or to steel companies to honor voluntary guidelines on prices? I can recall none. The rhetoric used on such occasions is designed to produce feelings of guilt in noncooperators. For centuries it was assumed without proof that guilt was a valuable, perhaps even an indispensable,ingredientof the civilized life. Now, in this post-Freudian world, we doubt it. Paul Goodman speaks from the modern point of view when he says: "No good has ever come from feeling guilty, neither intelligence, policy, nor compassion. The guilty do not pay attentionto the object but only to themselves, and not even to their own interests, which might make sense, but to their anxieties" (18). One does not have to be a professional psychiatrist to see the consequences of anxiety. We in the Western world are just emergingfrom a dreadful two-centuries-longDark Ages of Eros that was sustained partly by prohibition laws, but perhaps more effectively by the anxiety-generatingmechanisms of education. Alex Comfort has told the story well in The Anxiety Makers (19); it is not a pretty one. Since proof is difficult,we may even concede that the results of anxiety may sometimes, from certain points of view, be desirable. The larger question we should ask is whether, as a matter of policy, we should ever encourage the use of a technique the tendency (if not the intention) of which is psychologically pathogenic. We hear much talk these days of responsible parenthood; the coupled words are incorporated into the titles of some organizationsdevoted to birth control. Some people have proposed massive propaganda campaigns to instill responsibility into the nation's (or the world's) breeders. But what is the meaning of the word responsibilityin this context? Is it not merely a synonym for the word conscience? When we use the word responsibilityin the absence of substantial sanctions are we not trying to browbeat a free man in a commons into acting against his own interest? Responsibility is a verbal counterfeit for a substantial quid pro quo. It is an attempt to get something for nothing. 13 DECEMBER 1968 If the word responsibility is to be used at all, I suggest that it be in the sense Charles Frankel uses it (20). "Responsibility,"says this philosopher, "is the product of definite social arrangements."Notice that Frankel calls for social arrangements-not propaganda. coercion is not to say that we are required to enjoy it, or even to pretend we enjoy ite Who enjoys taxes? We all grumble about them. But we accept compulsory taxes because we recognize that voluntary taxes would favor the conscienceless. We institute and (grumblingly) supporttaxes and other coercive devices to escape the horror of the commons. Mutual Coercion Mutually Agreed upon The social arrangementsthat produce responsibility are arrangements that create coercion, of some sort. Consider bank-robbing.The man who takes money from a bank acts as if the bank were a commons. How do we prevent such action? Certainly not by trying to control his behavior solely by a verbal appeal to his sense of responsibility. Rather than rely on propaganda we follow Frankel's lead and insist that a bank is not a commons; we seek the definite social arrangements that will keep it from becoming a commons. That we thereby infringe on the freedom of would-be robbers we neither deny nor regret. The morality of bank-robbing is particularlyeasy to understandbecause we accept complete prohibition of this activity. We are willing to say "Thou shalt not rob banks," without providing for exceptions. But temperancealso can be created by coercion. Taxing is a good coercive device. To keep downtown shoppers temperate in their use of parking space we introduce parking meters for short periods, and traffic fines for longer ones. We need not actually forbid a citizen to park as long as he wants to; we need merely make it increasinglyexpensive for him to do so. Not prohibition, but carefully biased options are what we offer him. A Madison Avenue man might call this persuasion; I prefer the greater candor of the word coercion. Coercion is a dirty word to most liberals now, but it need not forever be so. As with the four-letter words, its dirtiness can be cleansed away by exposure to the light, by saying it over and over without apology or embarrassment. To many, the word coercion implies arbitrary decisions of distant and irresponsible bureaucrats;but this is not a necessary part of its meaning. The only kind of coercion I recommendis mutual coercion, mutually agreed upon by the majority of the people affected. To say that we mutually agree to An alternative to the commons need not be perfectly just to be preferable. With real estate and other material goods, the alternative we have chosen is the institution of private property coupled with legal inheritance. Is this system perfectly just? As a genetically trained biologist I deny that it is. It seems to me that, if there are to be differences in individual inheritance, legal possession should be perfectly correlated with biological inheritance-that those who are biologically more fit to be the custodiansof propertyand power should legally inherit more. But genetic recombination continually makes a mockery of the doctrine of "like father, like son" implicit in our laws of legal inheritance. An idiot can inherit millions, and a trust fund can keep his estate intact. We must admit that our legal system of private property plus inheritance is unjust-but we put up with it because we are not convinced, at the moment, that anyone has invented a better system. The alternative of the commons is too horrifying to contemplate. Injustice is preferable to total ruin. It is one of the peculiarities of the warfare between reform and the status quo that it is thoughtlessly governed by a double standard. Whenever a reform measure is proposed it is often defeated when its opponents triumphantly discover a flaw in it. As Kingsley Davis has pointed out (21), worshippers of the status quo sometimes imply that no reform is possible without unanimous agreement, an implication contrary to historical fact. As nearly as I can make out, automatic rejection of proposed reforms is based on one of two unconscious assumptions: (i) that the status quo is perfect; or (ii) that the choice we face is between reform and no action; if the proposed reform is imperfect, we presumably should take no action at all, while we wait for a perfect proposal. But we can never do nothing. That which we have done for thousands of years is also action. It also produces evils. Once we are aware that the 1247 status quo is action, we can then co.pare its discoverable advantages and disadvantages with the predicted ad- vantages and disadvantagesof the proposed reform, discounting as best we can for our lack of experience. On the basis of such a comparison, we can. make a rational decision which will not involve the unworkableassumptionthat only perfect systems are tolerable. Recognitions of Necessity Perhaps the simplest summary of this analysis of man's population problems is this: the commons, if justifiable at all, is justifiable only under conditions of low-population density. As the human population. has increased, the commons has had to be abandoned in one aspect after another. First we abandoned the commons in food gathering, enclosing farm land and restricting pastures and hunting and fishing areas. These restrictions are still not complete throughout the world. Somewhat later we saw that the commons as a place for waste disposal would also have to be abandoned. Restrictions on the disposal of domestic sewage are widely accepted in the Western world; we are still struggling to close the commons to pollution by insecticide automobiles, factories, sprayers, fertilizing operations, and atomic energy installations. In a still more embryonic state is our recognition of the evils of the commons in matters of pleasure. There is almost no restriction on the propagation of sound waves in the public medium. The shopping public is assaulted with mindless music, without its consent. Our 1248 government is paying out billiions of dollars to create supersonic transport which will disturb 50,000 people for every one person who is whisked from. coast to coast 3 hours faster, Advertisers muddy the airwaves of radio and television. and pollute the view of travelers. We are a long way fromnoutlawing the commons in matters of pleasure. Is this because our Puritan inheritance makes us view pleasure as something of a sin, and pain (that is, the pollution of advertising) as the sign of virtue? Every new enclosure of the conm mons involves the infringement of somebody's personal liberty. Infringements made in the distant past are accepted because no contemporary complains of a loss. It is the newly proposed infringements that we vigorously oppose; cries of "rights" and "freedom" fill the air. But what does "freedom'" mean? When men mutually agreed to pass laws against robbing, mankind became more free, not less so. Individuals locked into the logic of the commons are free only to bring on universal ruin; once they see the necessity of mutual coercion, they become free to pursue other goals. I believe it was Hegel, who said, "Freedom is the recognition of necessity." The most important aspect of necessity that we must now recognize, is the necessity of abandoning the commons in breeding. No technical solution. can rescue us from the misery of overpopulation. Freedom to breed will. bring ruin to all. At the moment, to avoid hard decisions many of us are tempted to propagandize for conscience and responsible parenthood. The temptation must be resisted, because an appeal to independently acting con- sciences selects for the disappearance of all conscience in the long run, and an increase in anxiety in the short. The only way we can preserve and nurture other and more precious freedoms is by relinquishing the freedom to breed, and that very soon. "Freedom is the recognition of necessity"--and it is the role of education to reveal to all the necessity of abandoning the freedom to breed. Only so, can we put an end to this aspect of the tragedy of the commons. References 1. J. B. Wiesner and H. F. York, Sc.t Amer'. 211 (No. 4), 27 (1964). 2. G. Hardin, J. Hered. 50, 68 (1959); S. vo Hoernor, Science 137, 18 (1962). 3. J. von Neumann and 0. Morgenstern, Theory of Games and Economic Behavior (Princeton Univ. Press, Princeton, N.J., 1947), p. 11. 4. J. H. Fremlin, New Sci., No. 415 (1964), p. 285. 5. A. Smith, The Wealth of Nations (Modern Library, New York, 1937), p. 423. 6. W. F. Lloyd, Two Lectures on the Checks to Population (Oxford Univ. Press, Oxford, England, 1833), reprinted (in part) in Population, Evolution, and Birth Control, G. Hardii, Ed. (Freeman, San Francisco, 1964), p. 37, 7. A. N. Whitehead, Science and the Modern World (Mentor, New York, 1948), p. 17. 8. G. Hardin, Ed. Population, Evolution, and Birth Control (Freeman, San Francisco, 1964), p. 56. 9. S. McVay, Sci. Amer. 216 (No. 8), 13 (1966). 10. J. Fletcher, Situation Ethics (Westminster, Philadelphia, 1966). 11. D. Lack, The Natural Regulation of Animal Numbers (Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1954). 12. H. Girvetz, From Wealth to Welfare (Stanford Univ. Press, Stanford, Calif., 1950). 13. G. Hardin, Perspec. Biol. Med. 6, 366 (1963). 14. U. Thant, Int. Planned Parenthood News, No, 168 (February 1968), p. 3. 15. K. Davis, Science 158, 730 (1967). 16. S. Tax, Ed., Evolution after Darwin (Univ, of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1960), vol. 2, p. 469. 17. G. Bateson, D. D. Jackson, J. Haley, J. Weakland, Behav. Sci. 1, 251 (1956). 18. P. Goodman, New York Rev. Books 10(8), 22 (23 May 1968). 19. A. Comfort, The Anxiety Makers (Nelson, London, 1967). 20. C. Frankel, The Case for Modern Man (Harper, New York, 1955), p. 203. 21. J. D. Roslansky, Genetics and the Future of Man (Appleton-Century-Crofts, New York. 1966), p. 177. SCIENCE, VOL. 162 THE MANAGEMENT OF COMMON PROPERTY RESOURCES: Finding a Cooperative Solution Robert hen will villagers come together to produce goods and services that they all need but cannot provide individually? In what circumstances will those who face a potential "tragedy of the commons" be able to formulate rules by which the tragedy is averted? Many writers on collective action are inclined to think that the circumstances are very limited. They argue that people in a situation in which all could benefit from cooperation will be unlikely to cooperate without an external agent to enforce agreements. Likewise, many theorists on property rights argue that common property resources will be overexploited as demand rises, so only private enclosure or state regulation stands a chance of preventing such a result.1 This article offers a critique of some of the analytical arguments used to reach these conclusions and argues that they have been inappropriately applied to certain types of village resources. It then discusses how to judge whether villagers will be able to sustain local rules of restrained access to common property resources and interprets the evidence from a study of forty-one villages in South India. Clearly there can be no general presumption that collective action rather than privatization or state regulation will work: witness the frequency of degraded grazing commons, despoiled forests, overexploited groundwater, and depleted fisheries. But there are many examples of villagers collectively managing property for long periods. Privatization or state regulation is therefore not always essential. A third option—local collective action—needs to be taken seriously. Because W ©1987 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/The World Bank 219 less public money is likely to be needed for local collective action than for either privatization or state regulation, it makes financial sense to establish local rules where circumstances permit. Common Property and Common-Pool Resources 220 On a continuum of property rights, exclusive possession (freehold) is at one end. At the other is no property, as in ocean fisheries or the atmosphere. In between lies common property, where the rights to exploit a resource are held by people in conjunction with each other. These rights may take several forms: they may allow unlimited exploitation for those within a specified group (as happened in commercial fisheries under national jurisdiction) or they may stipulate limits for each user (as in most commercial fisheries today or as in "stinting" of a grazing commons). Of course, the same type of resource may be exploited under a variety of property rights. This article deals with those resources that might be called "common-pool" resources—a subset of public goods, as that term is used in economics. All public goods have the property that many people can use them at once, because exclusion is difficult. But some public goods yield infinite benefits, in the sense that if A uses more there is not less available for others (lighthouses and weather forecasts, for example). Common-pool resources, by contrast, are public goods with finite, or subtractive, benefits: if A uses more, less remains for others. Common-pool resources are therefore potentially subject to congestion, depletion, or degradation (Blomquist and Ostrom 1985; Randall 1983). Groundwater is an obvious example of a common-pool resource. It can be used jointly, but use is subtractive. So when water is scarce, the groundwater table is likely to be depleted. Canal irrigation water, unfenced grazing land, and unfenced forest all meet the same criteria. These three resources—water, grazing, and trees—are vital to the livelihoods of millions of people in developing countries; the question of how to prevent their overexploitation as population grows is important for development policy. The prevailing answer runs as follows: when people are in a situation where they could mutually benefit if all of them restrained their use of a common-pool resource, they will not do so unless an external agency enforces a suitable rule. Each individual has an incentive to ignore the social costs of his behavior for fear that others will exploit the resource before he does. As a result, the rate of aggregate use exceeds the physical or biological rate at which the resource renews itself (Ostrom 1985b). This argument has been used to justify far-reaching proposals for changing the way that common-pool resources are managed (Ostrom 1985a; Runge 1986). According to one school, full private property Research Observer 2, no. 2 (July 1987) rights over the commons are a necessary condition for avoiding overexploitation (Demsetz 1967; North and Thomas 1977; Johnson 1972; Picardi and Siefert 1976). According to another, it is essential to give an external agency—usually the state—full authority to regulate the commons (Carruthers and Stoner 1981; Hardin 1968). For both schools, the policy issue is simply how to achieve the desired change with the least opposition from those involved. Defining the conditions under which users of common-pool resources may voluntarily restrain their use can be considered as a subproblem of the theory of collective action, also known as the theory of public goods. Collective action is action by more than one person intended to achieve a common goal or satisfy a common interest (that is, a goal or interest that cannot be obtained by an individual alone). Achievement means that a public or collective good has been provided. The collective action might be setting and observing a rule of restrained access to a common-pool resource, and the public good might be the sustainable exploitation that results. One of the theories that has generated pessimism about the viability of collective action is Mancur Olson's "logic of collective action" (which might better be called the illogic of collective action, or the logic of collective inaction). His core proposition is this: "unless there is coercion or some other special device to make individuals act in their common interest, rational, self-interested individuals will not act to achieve their common or group interests" (Olson 1971, emphasis added). In other words, the theorem says that (a) voluntary collective action will not produce public goods, and (b) collective action based on selective (that is, excludable) penalties or rewards may produce public goods. Existing cases of common interest groups are thus to be explained by selective punishments or inducements. My findings question this argument. Theories of Collective Action The conventional view of Indian villages is that they lack any real public realm. A number of men are regarded as "big men," in some sense first in the village. But there is no clearly defined social domain or institution separate from state authority where activities of a public nature are carried out, no center of community management other than the lowest levels of the state apparatus itself, and no machinery for raising resources for public (village) purposes other than through state-sanctioned taxation....
Purchase answer to see full attachment
Explanation & Answer:
3 pages
User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.

Explanation & Answer

View attached explanation and answer. Let me know if you have any questions.


Topic sentence: Economic resources are in limited supply, and the level of utility
derived by the society depends on how well they utilize the commonly available

Thesis statement: While Western Societies manage the marine property as
open access, the Indo-Pacific areas ensure that the social units manage inshore
marine properties.


a) Main Point I: Joint Property.

Joint property is a system that provides public benefits to households through
collective management by a community, government, or society rather than

The system ensures that every person derives utility from such resources
inconsiderate of their social status.

b) Main Point II: Integrating The Modern Context of Conservation.

Pacific countries have recorded a significant degradation of onshore resources
drawing attention to the concerned governments and conservation groups.

Such stakeholders have suggested that integrating the modern context of
conservation would help solve the problem.

c) Main Point III: Understand CMT Regimes Effectively.

It is also essential that the involved stakeholders better understand CMT regimes

Such regulations form a basis for marine governance in the pacific and apply
significantly in development initiatives and resource management.

d) Main Point IV: Collective Action

Collective action is another proposal of ensuring controlled use of common
proper to minimize destruction.

It is a method that uses the regulations of restrained access where people are
only allowed to use shared ...

I was having a hard time with this subject, and this was a great help.


Similar Content

Related Tags