Making Sense of Human–Environment Interaction: Policy Guidance Under Conditions of Imperfect Data

  • Mathew Khurian


Changes in the policy and legal environment may support adaptive environmental management. The introductory chapter of this volume referred to this set of change as belonging to the institutional environment. We distinguished this set of change from institutional arrangements: access to markets, information, technology, financial resources, skilled staff with clear roles and responsibilities. The dispersion of institutional arrangements will most certainly differ across space – district, village or watershed. Process variables like connectivity to critical infrastructure such as roads, electricity or internet and motivated agency staff may mediate access to institutional arrangements. The chapter distinguishes between process variables and access to services like soil and water conserving techniques. Realisation of higher order service outcomes like delivery of affordable and reliable water services like soil conserving farming techniques, sustainable water sources or connection to a sewer network are very often mediated by market and state forces that support planning and technical development. Further, in many situations lack of socio-ecological data hampers planning and management interventions. This chapter grapples with some of these issues through an analysis of soil conservation interventions in Laos. In doing so, the chapter emphasises the importance of constitutional choice, collective choice and operational rules that we discussed in the first chapter of this volume.


Technology Adoption Fallow Period Upland Rice Household Food Security Asian Development Bank 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water EducationDelftThe Netherlands

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