Sustainable Governance of Commons

Nobel Prize winning economist Elinor Ostrom emphasized that a "tragedy of the commons" is not inevitable. At the same time, the solution to commons problems—establishing property rights—is more challenging in some contexts than others. Inspired by the polycentric approach, this project considers the diversity of institutions that contribute to more effective resource management. It also shows how polycentricity can contribute to more effective resource governance. Its topics include the governance of mineral extraction; the political, economic, and social determinants of deforestation; and the social and political institutions associated with mitigation of climate change. Center activities will focus on research, workshops, and course development grants that address the institutional foundations of sustainable resource governance.