Nouvelles publications de l’AFD sur les communs

Deux publications récentes dans la collection Research Papers de l’AFD

2019 – Research Paper No. 87 | Commons: Towards a New Narrative on Development Policies and Practices?

Narratives feed into development policies. They are the outcome of complex interactions between political and economic contexts as well as scientific findings and practices. Narratives are a way to build converging discourses, to rally actors and give meaning. As early as the 2000s, a discourse emerged around Global Public Goods in parallel to the one on Sustainable development. Upon facing increasingly alarming planetary challenges, we believe that commons, both as institutional processes and as a philosophy, are vectors for change. This article looks at the intellectual and operational potential provided by commons on development policies. What do commons refer to? To what extent do they invite development actors to take a step aside and renew their policies, strategies and practices?

Key words: Commons, Public goods, Development, Governance

2019 – Research Paper No. 95 | Development Practices: Building New Equilibriums within the Commons-State-Market System

For ten years (1998 – 2008), the Cambodian government rehabilitated the Prey Nup polders, a 90 km of earth dikes system protecting 10,500 hectares of rice paddies from seawater intrusion. This French Development Agency-funded project provides a clear illustration of an “administered commons”, where the administration aims to delegate its responsibility to new or previously-existing informal “communities” which it seeks to structure. This article relates the rehabilitation of the polders and explores the different commons-State-market systems that are generated. It brings to attention the weaknesses of this administered commons, and the tremendous challenges that it faces in order to turn into a “neo-commons”. This latter notion refers to an original creation in time which combines the typical requirements of traditional commons (community, resource, consolidation of management rules) with some degree of reinterpretation, giving way to hybrid governance forms that associate public administration and commodification. Based on this experience, the article re-examines the role of public authorities in promoting and supporting the emergence, consolidation and growth of neo-commons.

Key words: Commons, Development, Cambodia, Agriculture, Irrigation, Public policies

Dossier spécial “Communs et développement” de la Revue Internationale des Etudes du Développement

Un dossier spécial “Communs et développement” de la Revue Internationale des Etudes du Développement peut également être mentionné. Il permet d’interroger la pertinence de l’approche scientifique des communs pour décrire des dynamiques sociales, économiques, politiques et institutionnelles dans des espaces et territoires divers, dans une perspective pluridisciplinaire. Ensuite, il propose de discuter des approches méthodologiques qui permettent de caractériser les communs aujourd’hui et ainsi d’interroger l’aide publique au développement en renouvelant les concepts sur lesquels se basent les politiques de développement.