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Journal Articles Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space Year : 2022

Explaining societal change through bricolage: Transformations in regimes of water governance

Abstract

This paper is motivated by the pressing need to understand how water use and irrigated agriculture can be transformed in the interests of both social and environmental sustainability. How can such change come about? In particular, given the generally mixed results of simplified, state-initiated projects of social engineering, what is the potential for transformations in societal regimes of governance to be anchored in the everyday practices of farmers? In this paper, we address these enduring questions in novel ways. We argue that the concept of bricolage, commonly applied to analysing community management of resources, can be developed and deployed to explain broad societal processes of change. To illustrate this, we draw on case studies of irrigated agriculture in Saharan areas of Algeria and in the occupied Golan Heights in Syria. Our case analysis offers insights into how processes of institutional, technological and ideational bricolage entwine, how the state becomes implicated in them and how multiple instances of bricolage accumulate over time to produce meaningful systemic change. In concluding, however, we reflect on the greater propensity of contemporary bricolage to rebalance power relations than to open the way to more ecological farming practices.
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Dates and versions

hal-04009695 , version 1 (24-11-2023)

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Pierre-Louis Mayaux, Muna Dajani, Frances Cleaver, Mohamed Naouri, Marcel Kuper, et al.. Explaining societal change through bricolage: Transformations in regimes of water governance. Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space, 2022, pp.251484862211436. ⟨10.1177/25148486221143666⟩. ⟨hal-04009695⟩
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