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International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 2 (2006) 359–369 Reaching for new perspectives on socio-ecological systems: exploring the possibilities for adaptive co-management in the Swedish mountain region 1 2 3 Tomas Willebrand , Camilla Sandström and Tommy Lundgren Department of Animal Ecology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, Sweden Department of Political Science, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden Department of Forest Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, Sweden Key words: Swedish mountains, natural resources, adaptive co-management SUMMARY Natural resource management policy seems to be changing with regard to the choice of both institutions and organisation to meet the demands for further decentralisation of natural resource management to local communities. The need to integrate ecological knowledge with political, economic, social and ethical perspectives in order to develop appropriate management tools has become obvious. The Swedish mountain region is facing a rapid change in socio-economic conditions. Traditional stakeholders are required to share the resources with new user groups, creating a risk for a tragedy of ‘open access’. This article explores the possibilities for adaptive co-management of natural resources in the Swedish mountain region and suggests a two-stage process, where the first stage has to reach a clear understanding of how the overarching (national) goals limit the power and resources devolved to local community-based organisations. How large is the space that local co-management can explore adaptively? Collaborative learning is especially important for establishing a common basis of understanding. The process should result in a restricted number of management models. The second stage evaluates iteratively if the management model from stage one is performing as predicted, or if any of the competing models prove a better choice. Criteria of success have to be defined early, and careful monitoring of ecological, economic and social values is required. INTRODUCTION Environmental governance is characterised by a the Swedish government has declared its intention growing movement towards collaborative local to increase the use of local knowledge and to stakeholder participation in natural resource strengthen regional and local influence in matters management (Zachrisson 2004). In line with this, concerning nature protection and resource Correspondence: Tomas Willebrand, Department of Animal Ecology, SLU, S-901 83 Umeå, Sweden. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 359 Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren utilisation in order to legitimise policies (see, for area is under the direct management of state example, SOU 2001/2002:177). The government agencies. The forested land below is mostly owned has also initiated large-scale attempts to involve by large forestry companies, but the state is also the stakeholders in the management of large carni- major shareholder of the largest forest company. vores (Proposition 2000:01/57) and various fish Especially in the northern part of the region, there resources. In addition, several official reports have are a number of unresolved land-rights and tenure proposed similar solutions to ensure sustainable issues (SOU 2005) involving the state, the Sami and resource use of natural resources in the mountain private land owners. region and in protected areas (Naturvårdsverket Adaptive governance or, more precisely, adap- 2003; SOU 2005:116). As in many other countries, tive co-management is often assumed to be such an Swedish natural resource management policy thus interdisciplinary tool as it combines ‘the dynamic seems to be undergoing rapid change, in the choice learning characteristics of adaptive management of both institutions and organisation, to meet the with the linkage characteristics of cooperative demands for further decentralisation of natural management and also with collaborative manage- resource management to local communities. ment’ (Folke et al. 2005). However, while adaptive With this change from a traditional expert- co-management theory makes many promises, we oriented and top-down state-managed approach to should not underestimate the problems involved various participatory management approaches, that can lead to failure, in practice. In this article, human dimensions have become an integral part of we explore the possibilities for adaptive co- natural resource management in social–ecological management of natural resources in the Swedish systems (Berkes and Folke 1998; Carlsson and mountain region. We argue that adaptive co- Berkes 2005). One consequence is the need to inte- management can be a rational approach to solve grate ecological knowledge with political, eco- resource management problems, and identify the nomic, social and ethical perspectives in order to need to integrate social, ecological and economic develop appropriate management tools. Ludwig knowledge to clarify the existing range of opportu- et al. (2001), for example, argue that conservation nities for adaptive co-management in the region. efforts can only be effective when ecologists under- stand and appreciate the social and ethical aspects Co-management in the mountain region – of conservation. The same is, of course, true for all problems and prospects disciplines involved in environmental research: these ‘wicked problems’ (Ludwig et al. 2001) Any resource management situation characterised require the ability to place disciplinary research in a by a number of competing uses, where exclusion is multidisciplinary perspective (Nicolson 2002). difficult and a degree of rivalry exists, can be The societies in the Swedish mountains (see pre- described as a commons dilemma (Ostrom 2005). vious articles in this issue) are facing a declining The Swedish mountain region, with its overlapping and ageing population, in parallel with a change in property regimes, and where different actors claim the economy from relying on extraction and export the right to the land and/or to the resources in a of natural resources to becoming more and more vast and sparsely populated area undoubtedly fits dependent on the public sector (Lundmark 2006). this description. This is also one reason why con- In this new situation, traditional and place-based flicts over the sparse resources occur from time to stakeholders have to share the resources with new, time in the region. More inclusive or participatory often interest-based, user groups, creating complex management arrangements have been suggested as multiple-use situations with an evident risk for an a solution to reduce these conflicts, and it has ‘open access’ tragedy (Ostrom 2005). Parallel to been argued that this would not only solve conflicts the socio-economic transition in the mountainous but also promote economic and social develop- parts of Sweden, those who live in the area are pro- ment. Although the Swedish government has posing more inclusive or participatory manage- recognised the importance of local participation in ment arrangements in order to promote economic resource management, there are exceptionally few and social development and/or reduce conflicts. examples where the government has devolved any An important and unusual circumstance for the real power to community-based organisations in region is that almost all of the high mountainous this particular region (Proposition 2000:01/57; Skr 360 International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren 2001/2002:173; www.fiskeriverket.se). Moose man- legitimate co-management arrangements when agement, which is not under direct management of ownership rights and rights to access to the the state in the mountain region, is an interesting resource in use are contested. exception. The formal hunting policies are set by However, some of the cases have also shown that the Swedish government and devolved to the local some of the property rights problems can be over- hunting organisations through state and county come through appropriate conflict solving mecha- agencies. The local hunting organisations have a nisms. First, deliberative arenas (Sandström et al. strong responsibility to estimate needed quotas to 2006; Zachrisson, submitted for publication) and regulate the population and organise the hunting collaborative learning (Esselin et al. in this issue) (Bergström et al. 1992; Fell 2006). have proved to be important tools in order to solve To what extent have the actors involved in man- conflicts, establish trust and increase the legitimacy agement been able to solve the commons dilemma of the process. The satisfaction of the actors has characterising the different cases and thus reduce thus been related not only to the outcome of the the level of conflict? A few of these examples have management but also to the process by which the been analysed, with special attention on the con- actors have gained access to management and cepts of power-sharing and legitimacy within the learned from each other. perspectives of common pool resource- and co- Second, we can confirm earlier findings show- management theory. The studied cases concern ing that the power distribution within the co- snowmobile regulation (Zachrisson, submitted management arrangement matters. Previous for publication), large carnivore management research shows that it is necessary to grant at least (Sandström et al. 2006), the establishment of some influence to those involved in order to gener- Fulufjället national park (Zachrisson, submitted for ate a legitimate management process (Pinkerton publication) and of the Laponia World Heritage 2003). In several of the cases in focus, the reluc- Site (Rådelius 2002), consultation procedures tance of the government and the state agencies to between forestry and the reindeer-herding industry devolve any real power to the local actors is why (Sandström et al. submitted for publication) and some of the co-management arrangements conse- attempts to co-manage small game (Sandström, quently failed (Sandström et al. 2006; Sandström submitted for publication). Although the cases submitted for publication). differ widely with regard to both the specific natural A third factor, commonly underestimated, is the resources and the actors involved, their compari- need for economic support for the local manage- son permits some general conclusions, theoretical ment structure. In some of our cases, it has been a as well as empirical, to be drawn. crucial factor for establishing lasting management Co-management theory – which, to a large regimes: external resources are needed to include extent, focuses on the management of the natural process leaders or mediators when conflicts occur resources in use – often fails to consider that man- (Zachrisson et al. in this issue; Sandström et al. agement is also about negotiation relationships 2006). Even more important, in some cases the between people with varying interests in the government has offered extra infrastructure invest- resources. In order to understand the problems ments to local actors as an incentive to accept, or and prospects of co-management, it is thus neces- maybe as an exchange for their support for, the sary to recognise not only ecological concerns, but conservation of natural resources (Zachrisson, sub- also the social, political and legal dimensions of mitted for publication). co-management. The attempts to introduce various Co-management is a promising strategy to forms of co-management arrangements in the reduce the levels of conflict and overcome the com- Swedish mountain region have opened up a politi- mons dilemma in the Swedish mountain region. cal debate about the ownership or access to the The ambiguous property and tenure rights are a resources, especially in relation to indigenous constraining factor for the establishment of rights. In some cases, such debates have deepened participatory management in the region. Another the conflicts rather than helped to solve them conclusion is that co-management cannot be imple- (Rådelius 2002; Sandström submitted for publica- mented simply by using a single formula: each case tion). One conclusion that can be drawn from our is inherently different and demands an adaptive case studies is that it is difficult to establish approach that takes into account the character of International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 361 Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren the resource in use, the actors involved, and the to vary simultaneously is costly, and may fail to con- institutional features of the management arrange- trol all the factors that are important for the system. ments. The need for an adaptive and learning The idea of scientifically comparing the per- strategy is further augmented by the difficulties of formance of a number of competing models in predicting the ecological results of any chosen ongoing management, without full control over all management strategy. factors, was introduced in the 1970s and further developed in the 1980s and 1990s (Walters et al. 1976; Walters et al. 1984; Williams et al. 2002). The The uncertainty of natural resources focus has shifted from statistical tests to finding the Ecologists commonly partition uncertainty into most credible model given the available data and three major sources (Regan et al. 2002): (i) natural understanding. The likelihood of the different variation, (ii) structural uncertainty, and (iii) obser- models is repeatedly rechecked as available data are vational (including controllability) uncertainty, gathered and the probability of competing models and have established strategies to develop manage- is adjusted. ‘Learning while doing management’ ment systems under uncertainty (Hilborn et al. was formally developed into the theory of adaptive 1997; Williams et al. 2002, and references therein). management of natural resources by Walters Natural variation constitutes the changes we can- (1986). not explain. Few natural systems are known to be Many ecological systems still contain too much inherently random and irreducible to a determinis- uncertainty, and available models are still too tic system (Regan et al. 2002; Lande et al. 2003), but incomplete to be suitable for adaptive manage- it is almost impossible to obtain enough informa- ment. On the other hand, some systems (e.g. agri- tion and understanding to make reliable predic- cultural systems), contain only limited ecological tions. Changes are treated as random instead of uncertainty, making adaptive management redun- pursuing the mechanisms behind them. However, dant. The point is that the choice of ecological we need to have an understanding of how the most strategy for managing natural resources changes important mechanisms cause changes in the system. over time as knowledge increases, even when poli- Structural uncertainty refers to the lack of under- cies and goals remain unchanged (see van Eeten standing of these major causes behind the variation et al. 2002 for further examples.) Three different (Hilborn et al. 1997; Turchin 2003). For example, ecological requirements must be fulfilled before it the functional relationships describing how differ- is appropriate to launch an adaptive management ent systems respond to harvest are still far from fully program: (i) monitoring of the resource, (ii) struc- understood (Reynolds et al. 2001; Sibly et al. 2003; tural understanding and (iii) controllability. Moni- Danell et al. 2006). Observational uncertainty is the toring and subsequent modelling would provide difficulty of obtaining data from the system with important insight into functional relationships of enough precision. The variations in many time the system, and carefully devised small-scale experi- series of natural resources contain a significant ments with a high level of controllability can be measurement error which may confound the analy- used to quantify critical relationships. However, this sis. Significant resources have been spent on im- will rarely be sufficient to build ecological models proving monitoring techniques to increase suitable for adaptive management. Depending on precision and reduce bias; this type of research the available resources, a combination of mechanis- is still rapidly expanding (Williams et al. 2002; tic modelling/scenario building and field experi- Buckland et al. 2004). ments is needed to identify a complete set of Early management of natural resources relied competing ecological management models. on observations from long-term monitoring Adaptive management can be implemented and/or harvest statistics, or principles developed in once a number of competing models have been small-scale experiments to decide on which of two refined, but its success will also depend on non- alternative hypotheses was true. However, it is ecological conditions, as discussed below. Active almost impossible to use results from many single adaptive management is the choice if a decrease in experiments to put together a model of a large- ecological uncertainty is the highest priority. Delib- scale complex system. Doing large-scale field erate perturbations of the system are designed, experiments where several parameters are allowed often pushing the system away from the chosen 362 International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren management goal. Passive adaptive management, of the types of uncertainties and suggests possible on the other hand, is the choice when the manage- management strategies to reduce ecological un- ment goal is prioritised and data from careful certainty (see previous articles in this issue). The monitoring are seen as a sufficient byproduct to gradually reduce uncertainty (Williams et al. 2003). Figure 1 shows the tentative development between the level of uncertainty and strategy to reduce eco- logical uncertainty. Note that the strategies at larger uncertainties are, to a large extent, incorpo- rated in the strategies at higher certainty, e.g. moni- toring is a central part of adaptive management. Outside economically important sectors such as forestry and agriculture, adaptive management of natural resources has rarely been formally imple- mented (see Williams 2006). We have used this ecological framework to evaluate the uncertainties of the natural resources Figure 1 The level of knowledge and controllability for four central species of the mountain region: of the system will determine the choice of ecological willow grouse (Lagopus lagopus), Arctic char (Salve- management approach. The graph shows a tentative pro- linus alpinus), wolverine (Gulo gulo) and reindeer gression from limited information and controllability (Rangifer tarandus). Table 1 provides an overview towards pure management where uncertainty is low Table 1 A summary of the uncertainties in a number of animal management systems in the Swedish mountain region Willow grouse Arctic char Wolverine Domestic reindeer Ecological management Identifying secure Size selective harvest Securing a lower Availability/quality of question threshold harvest and population threshold winter/summer level structure grazing Natural annual Very high Medium Low Low, but forestry variation activities Structural uncertainty Moderate Low Moderate Low Predict natural changes in stock Predict the effects Moderate Low Moderate Very low of harvest and compensation Predict the effects High Moderate Low Low of control and enhancement Observational Moderate/low High, fragmented Low intensive Very low, regular uncertainty national counts monitoring counts Monitoring and monitoring stock assessment Harvest statistics Moderate, bag size Very high, permits High illegal Very low, number and and effort harvest weight recorded Ecological strategies to Scenario modelling Stock assessment Scenario modelling Active adaptive reduce uncertainty and field and scenario and adaptive management and field experiments modelling management experiments International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 363 Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren ecological question for the three wildlife species is management in combination with field experi- similar, focusing on population levels and struc- ments, but co-operation with the forestry sector ture. The question for reindeer management is is required to predict more accurately available more related to the availability of suitable resources winter browsing. There is a potential to reduce for grazing. Although the annual variation in the uncertainty, and to increase the understanding of numbers of domestic reindeer is low compared possible management options that show economic with wildlife, there is a large variation in the avail- benefits, but this will also require more resources. able forage, especially when forest harvesting Estimating the economic impact of different man- briefly reduces the available land for winter agement strategies requires detailed information grazing. Willow grouse show the highest annual on the local level and methods to estimate non- variation in numbers; Arctic char and wolverine marketed natural and cultural values. populations vary to a lesser extent. The structural uncertainty is low for the rein- Natural and cultural resources in the deer; their population ecology is well known. It is local economy possible to set up models to predict numerical changes in the population with high precision The management of natural resources comes with assuming a stable resource of forage. In contrast, both costs and benefits, which usually mean that the annual changes in willow grouse are difficult to some individuals or groups are ‘winners’ and others predict, due to a highly variable and complex food are ‘losers’. In many cases, certain values are not web: a large part of the variation has to be described very well known or explicitly expressed in monetary as natural variation. Understanding of Arctic char transactions; however, they may still be of signifi- population dynamics has recently been advanced cant importance at the local and/or regional level. through a number of studies (Andersson 2005 and For example, meat from wildlife and fish are a sig- references therein). However, there is a lack of a nificant part of the household menu in the Swedish system to monitor populations and harvests over mountain region, but these values are not visible in regional scales. The variation among different regional databases since game meat and fish are not water bodies is not known with high precision, and sold or bought on the market. Other non-marketed long-term harvest statistics are limited. Wolverine values of substantial importance in some regions ecology is even less well understood, due to a small are the social and cultural values deriving from and threatened population not suitable for mani- being part of a heritage such as the Sami culture. To pulations. The high uncertainty of harvest statistics account for such types of values requires a better is due to the estimated large number of illegally strategy of management which makes it possible to killed wolverines each year. assess the economic consequences of different To summarise, additional field experiments and management alternatives. One way to obtain a mechanistic modelling would be the best strategy to better overview of how different agents of an econ- reduce uncertainty for willow grouse management. omy (e.g. firms, households and local government) A key question is to understand the functional are linked together is to arrange data in a social relationships of harvested populations at low densi- accounting matrix (SAM), a double book-keeping ties (Willebrand and Hörnell 2001). Such an system applied to a nation or a region (see Hartwick improvement in knowledge would drastically re- 2000, 2001; Lundgren 2005). These data could be duce the number of competing models to be evalu- ‘conventional’ economic data such as total income, ated in an adaptive management. Arctic char investments, transfers, etc. However, they could management seems to be closer to active adaptive also include other values which are not directly management although a large-scale monitoring observable from official data, such as ‘green’ values programme (stock assessment) is needed; addi- or cultural values. tional scenario modelling would likely reduce the There is a limited knowledge on how natural and number of possible ecological models. The choice cultural resources are linked to the local economy. of wolverine management is to adopt passive We have explored theoretical issues connected to adaptive management and to seek further guid- resource accounting with an explicit spotlight on ance from scenario modelling. Reindeer manage- the region’s specific characteristics; in this case, the ment has a strong base for an active adaptive pastoral reindeer industry and the indigenous 364 International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren Sami people’s cultural heritage. To this end, and A simple dynamic model of an economy in the for illustrational purposes, a SAM was utilised to Swedish mountain region has been used to study illustrate specific modelling results – mainly relat- how natural and cultural values are included in a ing to regional welfare measures – and to facilitate a more complete measurement of regional welfare. complete and comprehensive description of the The approach is inspired by work on national economy. On a national level, accounting of this accounting and alternative types of capital type has been around since the 1940s, serving as a (Hartwick 2000, 2001). The output of the model is tool to aid macro-economic policy analysis and to put into a SAM to illustrate how different flows and obtain an overview of an economy’s flows: con- stocks in the economy are linked together. In our sumption, production, savings, investments in specific example, there are three types of capital: man-made capital, etc. Net national product (NNP) man-made; reindeer (natural); and the Sami cul- – the total value of a nation’s production of goods – tural heritage (which we assume is quantifiable). is often used to indicate a nation’s total welfare (in Furthermore, we assume that the welfare of the per capita terms). However, this measure has been citizens is dependent upon the consumption of criticised for not considering important resources marketed goods, and that they also enjoy the Sami such as human, natural and social/cultural capital. cultural heritage, which can be considered a posi- Several attempts have been made, both theoreti- tive external effect from reindeer herding and meat cally and practically, to augment NNP to include production that is not priced in a market (i.e. the net changes in some natural resources and/or household utility function has consumption and environmental deterioration in the form of pollu- cultural heritage as arguments). The opposite may tion (e.g. Mäler 1991; Hultkrantz 1992; Heal et al. also be true in some areas; i.e. the Sami cultural 2002). heritage and reindeer herding cause negative At a regional level, it can be even more impor- external effects. Here we only use positive effects. tant to include natural and cultural values when Implicitly, this means that the negative aspects of measuring welfare, especially in regions with great conflicts between reindeer herding and, for resources of this kind (for example, see Throsby example, forestry are inexistent or, at least, out- 1999). The Swedish mountain area is characterised weighed by the positive aspects of the Sami cultural by grand views, many species and biotopes worthy heritage. The change in the stock of Sami cultural of protection, and a unique cultural heritage: the heritage is assumed to depend on history (stock of pastoral Sami people and reindeer herding. the previous period), the number of reindeer in the Measuring only, for example, total income from reindeer industry, and ‘political’ parameters which salary or production value of marketed goods is ‘un- are treated as exogenous (e.g. reindeer indus- fair’ from a welfare perspective. Also, we would like try-related policies). This means that the stock of to disentangle how cultural capital interacts with reindeer and the stock of Sami culture are related the rest of the local economy. Ideally, all types to each other. The economy is divided into the of natural and cultural capital, and the associated following sectors: (i) consumption and investment, utility flows, should be included when constructing (ii) man-made capital, (iii) reindeer capital, (iv) indicators for how ‘rich’ a region is. Examples of cultural capital, and (v) households. Each sector non-marketed utility flows could be the value has a column and a row in the SAM (Lundgren experienced from taking a walk in the woods, of 2005, http://eprints.otago.ac.nz/212/). Columns being able to fish in a nearby mountain lake, or of show expenditures, and rows receipts or incomes. snowmobiling in the mountains. Many things are The value of each column must equal its corre- not priced in a market and cannot be included in a sponding row. For example, the household row practical comprehensive measurement of a shows incomes, and the household column shows region’s ‘richness’ (e.g., net regional product, expenditures, or NRP (total value of produced NRP). However, in an economic model, we can goods in region). The NRP for this model economy define what the price of non-marketed goods can be summarised as follows: should be if they were put in a market. In other NRP = total consumption of marketed goods words, we can construct a theoretical measure of welfare that includes more than just the value of + net change in man-made capital (buildings marketed goods. and machines) International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 365 Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren + net change in natural capital (reindeer) The SAM of a typical mountain municipality – and + net change in cultural capital (Sami cultural thus the structure of the economy – is substantially heritage) different from the national SAM. The absence of + ‘consumption’ of culture by the economy. large industries, the presence of great natural resources, and the Sami cultural heritage are the Thus, the total value is what is produced in the most obvious differences. To be able to manage region, plus net changes in capital stocks, and natural and cultural resources adequately, we need something we label ‘consumption’ of culture. The more and better knowledge of these resources, and first two variables are the ‘conventional’ net their interactions with the rest of the local econ- regional product (which can be obtained from omy. This task is not trivial and entails both identify- Statistics Sweden at www.scb.se) – the value of pro- ing relevant resources and trying to value utility duction, investment and depreciation of man- flows from these resources. made capital stocks – which, on a national level, would be the NNP found in conventional national accounts. The last two variables are not easy to DISCUSSION quantify. But if they were quantified, the ‘optimal’ compensation to cultural capital could be identi- We have shown that the management of natural fied and re-distributed from the households (e.g. by resources in the Swedish mountain region aligns a tax increase) to the owners of the cultural stock, well with the new ideas that the sustainable and the indigenous Sami people. In reality, we can see effective management of natural resources requires this as the per kilo compensations or subsidies to some agreement regarding power sharing between the reindeer harvest sector which exist today, in the state and the community of resource users. Our addition to various other policy measures such as case studies clearly show that the process of distri- compensation for predator kills and land-use buting power among state agencies and stake- rights. In case of a compensation of this form, the holder groups is complex, especially when land-use per kilo income from slaughter of reindeer is the rights are unclear, so that the different organisa- sum of the market price and the compensation to tions representing different areas of interest tend to cultural capital re-distributed from households. establish informal institutional rules. There is a lack The latter is optimally set so that it corresponds to of general principles to guide such a process. We the true ‘consumption’ or positive flow of utility suggest that it has to be iterative, with mechanisms from Sami culture in the region. Here lies the real which make it possible to adjust the power structure challenge: to quantify the value of the utility flow over time. It would even be possible to let the pro- from the cultural capital. cess evaluate different systems for sharing power, The analysis performed and outlined above is either by changes over time or by comparing admittedly a simplification of reality. It is straight- regions with different systems. However, the pro- forward, at least in theory, to extend the analysis to cess cannot resolve the issue of rights to land in the include all relevant sectors of the economy and all region, and this further complicates the question of relevant natural resources (rare wildlife, magnifi- who should be represented in the management cent landscape, high air quality, etc.). This would, process. Several researchers and stakeholders have however, make the analysis cumbersome without raised concerns that, to initiate a process of co- adding significantly to the general conclusion that management, it is necessary to settle the property it is imperative to account for natural and cultural and tenure rights. A recent parliamentary investiga- resources when studying the local economy. Even tion suggested that hunting and fishing rights considering its simplicity, the model’s analytical should be shared among landowners and the output sheds light on some pertinent issues to con- reindeer herding community through a co- sider when looking at an economy in a region with management system (SOU 2005:116), but this is numerous natural and cultural resources. Two seen by some on both sides of the conflict as giving specific needs for the Swedish mountain economy up valid claims on the resource. are better knowledge about changes in relevant Understanding of the factors driving the ecologi- natural resources, and to know more about cal dynamics has increased for many natural people’s valuation of the Sami cultural heritage. resources in the mountain region. There are now a 366 International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren number of guidelines developed for the ecological At the local level, it is almost impossible to sepa- perspective ofmanagementofthe mountain region rate a management problem into separate disci- (previous articles in this issue). Active adaptive plinary questions without losing its context. A management is the most rapid way forward to failure to recognise this complexity will almost develop an efficient management system but certainly limit the development of a successful requires clear goals and high levels of control of the management strategy. The context may also be lost natural resource system, which is hardly characteris- due to the existence of separate and often non- tic of the natural resources in the mountain region. overlapping arenas where management initiatives A complicating fact is that the natural resources and strategies are exposed and discussed. We often operate at geographical scale, so that the sys- believe that this has its origin at the level of the state tem becomes more dependent on management policy and legislation, which is divided among a actions outside the area than inside it. Large carni- large number of sectors of interest. This is espe- vores require extensive areas, often crossing borders cially evident in the mountain region where the between nations. Reindeer migrate between state has retained much of the management summer and winter ranges, and even managing the responsibility, directly and indirectly through the harvest of a small animal, such as willow grouse, national forestry company. depends on the harvest in neighbouring areas. To conclude, we outline a two-stage process to Analysis of costs and benefits is important when reach an adaptive co-management which, we sug- deciding on the management strategy for a natural gest, could be general enough to be implemented resource. Active management and high precision for a large range of natural resources. Again we require more resources than a less ambitious strat- emphasise that the adaptive co-management has to egy. This is a question of optimal allocation of be seen as the goal and not the starting point. We resources, but requires understanding of non- begin with three basic questions that may seem market values in the local communities of the obvious but are not always considered: mountain region. Studies have shown that values • Is there a need to develop and change the pres- from non-traded services from natural resources ent management system? Democratic, economic can be substantial; e.g. Hultkrantz (1992) estimated or ecological values may all be legitimate reasons Swedish forest amenity services to be about one- for a change, but not all socio-ecological systems third of total production values from the forest necessarily require management. For example, sector. Quantifying these non-marketed services there is no management of wild berries although or goods into some money metric is often, at best, they have great market and non-market values; difficult. One pertinent example of this type of • Is there sufficient understanding of the system to ‘hidden’ value is household meat and fish con- suggest directions of development and change? sumption from hunting and fishing. In the Swedish • Are there resources allocated that can be used mountain region, these values can be substantial to develop and maintain a new management for many households. From the resource man- system? ager’s point of view, it would be desirable to know the inherent value of all utility flows from all rele- These questions are, to a large extent, policy- vant resources. Having this information would facil- relevant, and science can provide advice but few, if itate managing the resources, since effects and any, answers. This initial phase has to form a clear trade-offs between different management strate- description of how the overarching (national) goals gies could be valued consistently. At present, there limit the power and resources devolved to local is very little knowledge about the magnitude of community-based organisations. How large is the non-market values in relation to conventional area that local co-management can explore adap- market values; it is thus not possible to develop a tively? Specific for this region is the need to con- SAM to serve as an illustrational tool to display sider the property and tenure rights of each ‘green’ and cultural values in relation to these con- resource. What are the responsibilities of different ventional values. Therefore, effort should be put in stakeholders in the management process, who generating estimates of the values of services from should be included in the process, and with what relevant natural and cultural resources which can legitimacy? We believe that collaborative learning be found in the local mountain economy. (Esselin et al. in this issue) is especially important International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management 367 Adaptive co-management Willebrand, Sandström and Lundgren since it will establish a common ground of under- adaptive process that will efficiently define goals standing the system and its use. and tools for management. Our suggested prin- The first stage will generate several possible man- ciples for adaptive co-management are no easy task agement models containing predictions deriving to implement, and there are numerous restrictions from several scientific disciplines. These predic- and limitations that will make it difficult to evaluate tions can be contrasted to user preferences through all management models. Some will require changes scenario building, either within the working group in legislation, and others will require stakeholders or by exposing it to relevant stakeholders outside to be willing to share their power to create necessary the group. The process of collaborative learning prerequisites for co-management (social space). during model development and scenario building What should be done when models that have has to continue until a few competing alternatives required large and sometimes painful changes turn to local management have been agreed on. This is out to be wrong or have a low credibility? Arctic where the management of the natural resources char populations can probably withstand the expo- in the mountain region seems to be at present, sure of testing different management models, but although not necessarily with the aim of exploring is that also true for the human population in the adaptive co-management as a possibility, and too mountain region? often focusing on ‘how’ rather than the alternatives Recent advances in the management of natural to ‘why’. resources in the mountain region have laid a foun- The second stage uses the management model dation to build a more scientifically solid manage- with highest credibility from stage one to imple- ment of these resources. In this article, we have ment the management goal. Criteria of success used the results and experience built by our obviously have to be agreed before implementa- colleagues in the Mountain Mistra Research Pro- tion. Careful monitoring of ecological, economic gramme, and we have suggested a two-step strategy, and social values is essential to evaluate if the including collaborative learning and scenario mod- chosen management model is performing as pre- elling as important parts in the first step. We then dicted. Maybe some assumptions were wrong, and boldly suggest that alternative management models the model needs revision – or one of the competing should be evaluated in adaptive co-management models will prove to do even better. This is an itera- arrangements. The research programme summa- tive process that will continue to improve the man- rised in this issue has served as an important arena agement system until natural or societal changes for many interest groups with regard to the man- call for a re-evaluation through stage one. agement of natural resources in the Swedish moun- It is crucial that the focus is shifted from finding tain region. 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International Journal of Biodiversity Science & Management – Taylor & Francis
Published: Dec 1, 2006
Keywords: SWEDISH MOUNTAINS; NATURAL RESOURCES; ADAPTIVE CO-MANAGEMENT
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