Information for 10076IIED
Evolving Customary Institutions in the Drylands: An opportunity for devolved natural resource governance in Kenya?
Improved governance of natural resources is
crucial for building climate resilient livelihoods and
economies in Africa’s drylands. This paper looks
at why the authority and capacity of customary
natural resource management institutions has been
weakened, and how this impacts on resource
governance and climate resilience. Our case study
looks at a new hybrid form of customary/formal
institution that is emerging as a response to the
stagnation of development and increasing conflict
around resource access. The paper demonstrates
that legitimising and supporting customary institutions
can be a more successful and sustainable approach
to addressing the ‘drylands development deficit’
than projects that focus on technical fixes or work in
parallel to customary institutions.
County and local governments in Kenya and Tanzania are strengthening their capacity for effective adaptive planning with support from IIED. Through strengthening planning processes and establishing local adaptation funds, approaches to building resilience are being tested to inform policy and action in other drylands.