Power and politics in the governance of community-based adaptation

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This chapter presents a critical refl.ection on con1munity-based adaptation, questioning the assumption that the community is a given and appropriate scale of governance and addressing the often neglected issue of multi-scalar flows of power and expertise. Policy prescriptions, governance decisions and the politics of adaptation are all produced at and travel across different scales, producing vulnerability and adaptation in the process. Extra-local economic, political and social forces are therefore as important as the nature of resources themselves. Tims, we need to distinguish between the act of adaptation and the informal mies or institutions that structure the ways in which technical expertise is transfonned into adaptation. The ainz here is to reveal these often hidden, multi-scalar political processes that determine governance contexts. The analysis is presented as a complen1ent to, rather than a replacement for, quantitative policy instruments or normative frameworks for assessing adaptive capacity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCommunity Based Adaptation to Climate Change:
Subtitle of host publication Emerging Lessons
EditorsJonathan Ensor, Rachel Berger, Saleemul Huq
Place of PublicationRugby UK
PublisherPractical Action Publishing
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781780447902, 9781780447919
ISBN (Print)9781853397905, 9781853397912
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • power
  • politics
  • technology
  • community-based adaptation
  • governance
  • Nepal

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