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Social Actors and Participation in Environmental Issues in Latin America

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Abstract

The social participation of human beings and the term used for participants have changed through time. First, it was civil society, later citizenship, and currently social actor. Each concept has implied larger involvements, as rational and reflexive beings, in environmental issues. Today, social actors have become key figures for the governance of ecological systems. In this chapter we discuss the social actor concept and its relationship with environmental governance.

Keywords

  • Social-ecological systems
  • Latin America
  • Complexity
  • Social actors
  • Women
  • Public policies

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Fig. 1
Fig. 2

Notes

  1. 1.

    http://www.py.undp.org/content/paraguay/es/home/projects/paisajes-de-produccion-verde%2D%2Dcommodities-sustentables.html

  2. 2.

    http://www.unesco.org/education/pdf/RIO_E.PDF

  3. 3.

    https://www.iucn.org

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Annex I

Annex I

Latin American legal frameworks in relation to Arnstein (1969) second and third degree of social participation

Country Legal framework that incorporates direct social participation Year Legal provisions Territorial scale
Argentina (∗∗) Constitution (Art. 39) 1995 Citizens have the right to propose law projects to The Congress in diverse issues of their interest National, provinces and municipalities
Law N°24.747 1996 Regulates Art. 39 National
Decree 1172/03 on Access to public information and national strategy for development and land use planning 2013 Public hearings and elaboration of participation norms National
  2016 Strategic plan as co-management mechanism between civil society and the State at local level. In most cases only legal entities may participate National, provinces and municipalities
Belice  
Bolivia (∗∗∗) Constitution (Art. 20, Art. 26, Art. 241, Art. 242) 2009 Participation and control by citizens at all levels National, departments and municipalities
Law N°031/(Title VII, Chapters “Postnormal Science and Social-ecological Systems” and “Simplifying the Complexity of Social-ecological Systems with Conceptual Models”) 2010 Social participation and control mechanisms to develop laws in autonomous governments Departments and municipalities
Law N°341/Social participation and control 2013 Enforcement of Articles 241 and 242 of the Constitution National, departments and municipalities
Brazil
(∗∗)
Constitution (Art.14, Art.29) 1988 Establishes participation mechanisms National, municipalities
Law N°9.790 1999 Highlights the possibility of cooperation between the State and civil society. It also creates the category of public interest organizations from the civil society, facilitating their access to public resources National, municipalities
Law N°12.257/City statute 2001 Municipal participation budget Municipalities
Law N°12.187/National policy on climate change 2009 Stimulate and support civil society’s participation in climate change issues National, municipalities
Chile Law N°20.500/Citizens’ participation on public management 2011 The State recognizes the right of people to participate in its policies, plans, programs and actions in order to improve their management National, regional, communities
Presidential instrument N°007 on citizens’ participation 2014 Norm that allows the implementation of Law Nº 20.500 National, regional, communities
Colombia (∗∗) Constitution (Art. 23, Art. 270) 1991 It establishes the citizens’ right to claim and intervene in public management National
Law N°80 1993 Citizens’ control of State contracts National
Law N°134/On citizens’ participation mechanisms 1994 Establishes the popular legislation and normative initiative National, departments, municipalities
Law N°489 1998 Establishes the principles for democratic participation National, departments, municipalities
Costa Rica (∗) Law N°7.554/Law of the environment 1995 Promotes citizens’ participation to elaborate territorial instruments and plans National, regional, municipalities
Law N°7.794/Municipal Code 1998 Establishes three participatory mechanisms: plebiscites, referendum and chapters Municipalities
Ley N°8.491/Popular initiative 2006 Citizens may propose law projects National
Ley N°8.492/Referendum law 2006 Citizens may approve or disapprove laws through referendums National
Ecuador (∗∗) Constitution (Art. 61, Art. 81, Art.95, Art. 103, Art. 238) 2008 Establishes participation and control rights for citizens National, provinces
Law on citizens’ participation 2010 Establishment of participation mechanisms National
El Salvador Decree N°274/Municipal code 1986 Establishes participation mechanisms Municipalities
Decree N°233/Law of the environment 1998 Advisory participation on environmental issues Zones, departments, municipalities
Guatemala Peace agreement 1996 Encourages participation to identify, prioritize and solve citizens’ needs National
Law on development councils 2002 Encourages ethnic participation on development plans National, regional, departments, municipalities, communities
General decentralization law 2002 Strengths local power National, regional, departments, municipalities
Honduras (∗) Constitution (Art. 5) 1982 Participation in public management National
Law on citizens’ participation 2006 Establishes forms of participation National
Law on participation mechanisms 2013 Regulates participation mechanisms National
México (∗) Constitution (Art. 26) 1917 Participation in democratic planification of national development National
Planification law 1983 Establishes the principles for social participation in territorial planification National
Participation law (Federal District) 2016 Regulates participation instruments States
Federal to promote activities from civil society organizations 2018 Encourages citizens’ organizations to participate on environmental protection, restoration of ecological equilibrium and sustainable development National
Nicaragua Constitution (Art. 50) 1986 Encourages inhabitants’ participation in public issues National, departments
Citizen’s participation law 2003 Encourages institutional mechanisms to link the State and society National
Panamá Constitution (Art. 80, 108, 124) 1972 Recognizes the right to participate in culture development. Encourages the participation of ethnic groups and farmers on economy, society, culture and politics National
Law N°6/Access to information 2002 Regulates participation mechanisms National
Paraguay Constitution (Art. 47, 56, 65, 117) 1992 Promote equal opportunities when using nature’s benefits, material goods and culture National
Perú (∗∗∗) Constitution (Art. 2, 31) 1993 Establishes mechanisms for the participation in public issues National
Law on participation rights and citizens’ control 1994 Establishes citizens’ rights to participate on public issues and the mechanisms National
Uruguay (∗∗∗) Constitution (Art. 331) 1967 Citizens can modify the constitution National
Law N°19.272 /Political decentralization and citizens’ participation 2014 Establishes municipal rights and encourages citizens ‘participation National
Venezuela Constitution (Art. 62, 168) 1999 Citizens have the right to freely participate on public affairs National
Law on public and popular planning 2010 Its objective is to develop and strengthen peoples’ power National
  1. Asterisks correspond to those countries where the legal framework incorporates the concept of Payment for Environmental Services: (∗) national scale, (∗∗) regional, states or provinces and (∗∗∗) local scale

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Pérez-Orellana, D.C. et al. (2019). Social Actors and Participation in Environmental Issues in Latin America. In: Delgado, L., Marín, V. (eds) Social-ecological Systems of Latin America: Complexities and Challenges. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-28452-7_3

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