Working groups (10/29/13)



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WORKING GROUPS (10/29/13)

1 Addressing the Complexities of Property Rights in Financial Markets

Coordinators: Travis Selmier II (wselmier@indiana.edu) and Michael Schoon (michael.schoon@asu.edu)
Abstract: In a paragraph, we propose to examine the proliferation of intangible goods which have grown in finance and business over the last century. Intangible goods not only range across a wide spectrum of economic activity, but also influence how economic actors finance, account for and mitigate inherent risks of such goods. While the economic value basis of tangible goods can be determined in a straightforward manner using set assumptions, the valuation, and even ownership structure, of intangible goods is often complex and the underlying assumptions sometimes contested. This working group would use Workshop themes of environmental economics, common pools & club goods, and polycentrism to explore the governance challenges which have arisen.  
If accepted, we anticipate at least four papers.  Mike would act as Chair; I have talked to Chuck about him acting as discussant, or co-discussant, and providing a paper.  Working group members and “probables” [with hotkeys to their websites] are provided below.  Please contact Mike and me if you need any additional information or materials.

2 Analyzing the Role of Polycentric Governance for Enhancing Resilience in SESs

Coordinator: Claudia Pahl-Wostl (cpahlwos@uni-osnabrueck.de)
In recent years the term polycentric governance has become quite popular among researchers within the SES research community. The rising interest stems primarily from the assumed potential of those systems to realize adaptive management and to strengthen the resilience within SESs. One of the main arguments why polycentric governance systems are viewed appropriate for adaptive management is that their redundancy and flexibility provide for the ability to identify and respond to change in SESs. That is, the overlapping realms of responsibility (e.g. political authority) and functional capacities among a diverse set of actors provide many opportunities for producing public goods, for addressing existing issues at the appropriate scale, as well as for the of facilitation self-organisation and knowledge co-production across scales.
While empirical evidence shows that polycentric systems can offer the institutional dynamic important for adaptive management there is still limited understanding and clarity of the very features that define polycentric systems. Given the increasing recognition of the importance of different governance modes (i.e. bureaucratic hierarchies, markets, networks) and multi-level interactions it has also become evident that polycentric governance may be realized in quite different ways. Indeed, there is a need for more rigorous empirical and theoretical scrutiny of the concept if we want to utilize its analytical as well as practical potential.
The objectives of this working group are to increase the analytical and theoretical clarity of the concept, to provide different perspectives on polycentricity, and to discuss how to better operationalize the concept in the SES research.

3 Applications of the SES Framework So Far

Coordinator: Mansee Bal (bal.mansee@gmail.com)
SES framework is intended for understanding a complex whole (social-ecological) system through understanding the specific attributes of the system and their inter-relations. The rich ontological (multi-tier) framework claims to enable scholars to organize analysis of how the attributes of (i) a resource system, (ii) the resource services and units generated by that system, (iii) the users of that system, and (iv) the governance system jointly affect and are affected by the interactions and resulting outcomes achieved at a particular time and place. It claims to enable scholars to organize how these attributes may affect and be affected by larger (and smaller) socio-economic, political, and ecological settings in which they are embedded. In broader sense, SES framework is intended to build a common understanding of the social systems and ecological systems amongst various disciplines in order to overcome the linguistic and disciplinary barriers that result in the varied and often conflicting understanding of the social-ecological systems. More importantly, the framework is intended for systematic diagnosis of the structure and outcomes of complex social-ecological systems and for developing better conceptual language and theories, for diagnosing policy problems, and for designing empirical research.
SES framework is in its development phase. Since inception, the different ways in which SES framework is applied reflect the flexibility and the potential to work with/on it: Ostrom (2007) demonstrated Hardin’s theory of the tragedy of the commons; Meinzen-Dick (2007) explained the factors affecting farmers in the irrigation works in north India; Ostrom and Cox (2010) conducted a meta-analysis of the irrigation communities in New Mexico; Nayak (2010) conducted a cumulative spatial analysis and comparative time analysis of six lagoon systems located across the world; Nagendra and Ostrom (draft, 18 Oct’2011) study factors that affect collective action towards ecological performance of seven urban lakes in Bangalore; and Kunneke and Finger (2012) reconstructed the framework into social-technical systems (STS) framework. What is observed and interesting among these studies is that identifying and defining the variables and sub-variables is a-priori to SES application. While the variables and structure of framework seems to be in a way consensual; the developments of the sub-variables have a long way to go particularly on common (similar) understanding of the patterns and the languages for empirical and theoretical applications. The semantic wiki of the SES framework (http://socialecologicalsystems.referata.com/wiki/Main_Page) encourages this development.
For those involved in the empirical and theoretical applications of SES framework, WOW-5 is a good time for interaction and enrichment of the framework. The objective of this panel thus is to add to the development of the internal structure of the SES framework. The panel invites empirical and theoretical applications of the SES framework and discussions on the opportunities and challenges of application of the SES framework. The panel encourages discussion on the meanings and interpretations of the sub-variables and their inter-relations. With more empirical and theoretical additions, the panel hopes to enrich the framework and at the same time enrich our understanding of SES (and framework) through learning from each other’s experiences. The panel also hopes that contributors will self-organize to compile a working paper series on ‘SES applications and understandings’.
Mansee Bal

Department of Public Administration, Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands


References

Anderies, J.M., Janssen, M.A. & Ostrom, E., 2004. A Framework to Analyze the Robustness of Social-ecological Systems from an Institutional Perspective. Ecology and Society, 9(1).

McGinnis, M.D., draft 2010. Building a Program for Institutional Analysis of Social-Ecological Systems: A Review of Revisions to the SES Framework. Working Paper, Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, Indiana University. Version July 23, 2010.

Meinzen-Dick, R., 2007. Beyond panaceas in water institutions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104(39), pp.15200–15205.

Nagendra, H. and Ostrom, E., draft 2011. Applying the Social-Ecological Systems Framework to the Diagnoses of Urban Commons. Version Oct. 18, 2011.

Ostrom, E., 2007. A diagnostic approach for going beyond panaceas. PNAS; 104 (39): 15181-15187.

Ostrom. E., 2009. A General Framework for Analyzing Sustainability of Social-Ecological Systems. Science, 325(5939), pp.419 – 422

Ostrom, E., & Cox, M., 2010. Moving beyond panaceas: a multi-tiered diagnostic approach for social-ecological analysis. Environmental Conservation, 37(04), pp.451–463.



Ostrom, E. Janssen, M.A., and Andries J.M. 2007. Going beyond panaceas. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) of the United States of America, USA, 104(39), pp. 15176-15178.


4 Behavioral Experiments to Study Social-Ecological Systems

Coordinator: Marco Janssen (marco.janssen@asu.edu)
Abstract: This session bring together scholars who perform behavioral experiments in the laboratory and field to study the conditions for successful governance of common resources. In contrast to traditional studies in experimental economics, presenters in this section include explicitly ecological dynamics. Although there is substantial evidence on the ability of groups to overcome commons dilemmas when participants can communicate and use enforcement, this does not explain the wide diverse observed in the field. The new generation of experiments focuses more closely the topology of interactions and access to the common resources affecting the ability of groups to self-organize. When using experiments in the field the focus is to use those experiments to measure what attributes of communities explain abilities to self-organize which may vary from leadership, market integration and experienced uncertainty. Those field experiments as discussed in this session contain studies on water management in Pakistan and India.
This new generation of behavioral experiments will be more suitable to address questions of resilience of social-ecological systems as traditional experimental economics. Initial insights of the new generation of studies emphasize the importance of inequality, mental models and social justice for the ability of groups to cope with social and ecological disturbances.

5 Beyond Truisms: Exploring the Contributions of Institutional Analysis to the Study of Climate Change Adaptation?

Coordinator: Graham Epstein (gepstein@indiana.edu)


  • Climate change adaptation through the institutional lens

  • The institutional specifics of climate change adaptation

  • Bridging adaptation to climate change and institutional analysis


Abstract
With global attention focused intently on international climate negotiations and mitigation policies it has become increasingly clear that individuals and communities around the world will, or already have, experienced environmental disturbances that threaten their safety, livelihoods and overall well-being. Thus an increasingly urgent question for policymakers and scholars of social-ecological systems is how policies can be better designed to enhance prospects for adaptation to disturbances brought about by climate change. A particularly formidable challenge rests in the disconnect between a plethora of heterogeneous, mainly descriptive case studies and vague, highly general theoretical inquiries. There is thus a clear need for productive theoretical approaches that can shift the agenda from merely describing adaptation to climate change towards explaining when and how adaptation occurs and what facilitates desirable adaptation pathways under variable social-ecological conditions.
Our present understanding of adaptation focuses on institutions, collective action and social learning. Successful, sustainable, just, equitable, efficient adaptation processes seem to depend on the ability of the actors to overcome social dilemmas via enabling institutional arrangements. Nevertheless few studies have explicitly tested this assumption, nor considered how different institutional settings lead to different adaptation processes. Thus there appears to exist considerable room and potential for a fruitful cross-fertilization between institutional analysis and the literature on adaptation.
The working group aims to close some of the gaps by identifying and building bridges between research on institutions and research on adaptation. What can institutional analysis offer to better understand adaptation? What particularities of climate change adaptation can be illuminated by institutional economics? How can we deal with collective choice problems that involve long-term uncertainties that cannot be represented by probabilities? How can adaptation be provided as a public good in hybrid or polycentric arrangements that involve private and public actors?
This working group will be organized to bring together the different perspectives. We welcome and encourage both theoretical and empirical contributions. We plan up to two 90 minute sessions with five (5) ten minute presentations, for a total of ten (10) presentations and five minutes for questions; followed by 15 minutes for discussion in each session.

6 Cognition and Norms: Integrating Across Multiple Perspectives Addressing Social Dilemmas

Coordinator: Leandro F. F. Meyer (leandro.meyer@ufra.edu.br)
Abstract: Continuing the WOW4 cognition and norms exploration, the WOW5 working group looks deeper into problems of epistemic choice. Social dilemma solutions engage multiple groups and individuals. Each may conceptualize from different values and worldviews thus framing knowledge, as well as choosing different information, for problem solving. We engage with this complexity to build a better theoretical understanding of human behavior by examining these framing and worldviews/values implications.

On frames and articulating knowledge:



  • Paul Dragos Aligica develops the notion of Epistemic Choice as Vincent Ostrom's challenge to orthodox public choice and institutional theory.

  • Margaret M. Polski summarizes latest research into the biological basis of choice. The implications for institutional analysis and development (IAD) may require remapping ourselves, our interactions with others, and thus our thinking to make choices.

  • Giulia Andrighetto discusses the cognitive foundations of punishment. Punishment may be a repertoire rather single behavior with implications for cooperation and social dilemmas.

From a worldview or values perspective – the unique and distinct developmental stages through which people make sense of the world:



  • Natasha Todorovic and Christopher Cowan introduce Clare W. Graves Emergent Cyclical Levels of Existence Theory. This can allow us to make distinct predictions. The theory’s “levels of existence” shows that people react differently to similar incentive in social dilemmas.

  • Leandro Meyer and Marcelo Braga animate a discussion on understanding’s presuppositions. Articulating assumed knowledge, multiple forms of rationality and value judgments can allow us to integrate value systems and Habermas’s notion of communicative action coherently in the IAD framework.

  • Simon Divecha unpacks constructive developmental theory – one of the most comprehensively validated and accepted theories of adult development – for it’s potential to bring clarity to current social dilemmas. Problems and IAD may be given context, relevance and applied focus with such theory.

Group discussion aims to integrating such framing and worldviews for addressing social dilemmas.



7 Common Pool and Crowdsourcing in Health Informatics

Coordinator: L. Jean Camp (ljcamp@indiana.edu)
Abstract: We seek to engage in a a systematic evaluation of peer production and peer consumption of monitoring data as a potentially sustainable model for meeting the changing needs for health care, in particular wellness care, chronic condition care, and aging in place. Technologies designed to assist with health at home (such as the canonical safety alert buttons) are often designed so that patients are subjects of the technology, not producers of their own communal strength and safety. Peer produced technologies have been built for the social patterns, interests, and activities of public life by the healthy for the healthy.

 

The successful outcome of this workshop will be the introduction and evaluation of the questions that are needed for a  new model of health at home. We know this requires novel human-centered computing technologies, with a design informed by economics and the social sciences. The potential for  self-supporting model of care is based on the idea that the ill may be producers of their own care rather than passive recipients. The idea of communities of care and peer production have not previously been combined with human-centered design and economic theory. 



8 (The) Commons as Transformative Paradigm. Interweaving the Different Variations of Commons Logic to Build Commons Abundance
Coordinators: Wolfgang Hoeschele (whoesch@truman.edu) and

Helene Finidori (hfinidori@yahoo.com)
Purpose:
Diverse initiatives aiming to create a better world often work in relative isolation from each other. While they readily recognize that they have something vaguely in common, they may have difficulty pinpointing exactly what that is, and how their efforts could lead to productive synergies that would make all the movements together greater than the sum of their parts (leading to a movement of movements). Our purpose in this workshop is to explore whether and how a commons logic could help amplify the actions of diverse sustainability and social change initiatives in a way that can be geared towards growing the commons as a whole, toward an economy of abundance and sustainability. 

Goal:
Identify pathways toward the federation, networking, or interlinkage of disparate efforts towards a sustainable world, across worldviews and action logics.

Format:
An exploratory workshop, to include several short presentations along with plenty of time for discussion.

Description:


Much of what social change and environmental activist groups and communities of practice are currently engaged in is related in one form or another of protecting the environment, people, resources from over-exploitation and abuse, even if not organized as commons, aligned with a commons ethos, or expressed in 'commons speak.' They ultimately seek to nurture and grow factors of livelihood and enablement. Each environmental and social change agent holds a piece of the response to abuses of the commons and of the efforts to make the world thrivable; but for them to become really transformative, they need to find ways to work together and synergize more effectively.

To help promote such synergy, the commons research and activist community could focus on spreading and embedding the logic of the commons in social change activity and alternatives that have evolved without explicit reference to the commons.

What we would like for example to explore further in this workshop:


  • What are the levers, 'powers' and mechanisms used by the variety of groups working for the emergence of the new that would be most congruent with the logic of the commons, and how could these be further articulated to best help advance each individual initiative, networking among initiatives, and the abundance of commons as a whole?

  • What are the benefits of networking among groups? What are the barriers that need to be overcome in order to enable better networking?

  • What are the costs, in terms of time and other resources, of networking or federation? How can those costs be lowered, especially through information and communicatino technologies? 

  • What are the limits and stress points beyond which something beneficial can become detrimental and start turning against purpose, in particular the fine lines between protection and enclosure, cooperation and control?

  • What are the relationships, boundaries and adjacencies between action logics in their relations to commons and the inquiry models to uncover them?

  • What are the commonalities, and differences, of language among different movements (e.g., social justice, minority rights, social and solidarity economy, commons, environment, green), and can we build a greater common ground among them?

  • Could commons logic become a means to monitor and to 'vet' sustainability and social change initiatives and policies?

  • What kinds of research are needed on these subjects?

References:
Finidori Helene. 2013. Federating efforts towards a thriving world. How to make it happen? Presentation at the Imagine the Common Good Conference in Paris, August 2013

Finidori Helene. 2013. Rethinking sustainable development in terms of Commons. Adapted from a comment to the UN-NGLS Civil Society Consultation on SDGs, June 2013

Hoeschele Wolfgang. 2010. The Economics of Abundance. A Political Economy of Freedom, Equity and Sustainability. Aldershot, UK: Gower


9 Community Commons

Coordinator: Ryan Conway (rtconway@indiana.edu)
Abstract: The Community Commons working group is intended to provide a forum for research and discussion of community-based and applied research methods, designed to engage communities and catalyze social change for the creation and preservation of commons. We invite academics, practitioners, commons enthusiasts, and local community members to come together to discuss both implications and applications of the cutting-edge scholarship developed by the Ostrom Workshop and by commons scholars around the world. By inviting a diverse audience to explore a diversity of commons concepts, we seek to cultivate synergies in the interface between commons research and commons practice, bringing citizen science to policy science and Workshop wisdom to commons sense.

10 Comparative Analysis of Sustainable Development in the Amazon: Bringing Institutional Analysis into an Integrative Methodology Toolkit

Coordinators: Eduardo S. Brondizio (ebrondiz@indiana.edu) and François-Michel Le Tourneau (fmlt@fmlt.net)
Abstract: Understanding the complexity of collective action processes in regions experiencing accelerated social and environmental change remains a challenge for the Workshop community. The toolkit of Institutional Analysis–the IAD framework, Design Principles, Grammar of Institutions -- developed at the Ostrom Workshop has provided a comprehensive and inspiring approach to understanding the inner mechanisms of collective action mediating the way communities organize and manage access and use of common pool resources. The integration of these tools to other approaches, such as household economics, biodiversity assessment, environmental perception, and geospatial analysis, represent an important step towards understanding the influence of contextual and individual factors on resource management. This has been one of the goals of the DURAMAZ-II project in its focus on understanding and developing indicators of sustainable development in the Brazilian Amazon. This longitudinal project uses a socioecological systems framework to examine processes and indicators of sustainable development using a comparative methodology across 15 research sites representing diverse social groups and environments, from indigenous populations to small and large farmers. The methodological toolkit of the project integrates modules of institutional analysis, geospatial analysis, biodiversity, household socio-economy and demography, perception of the environment, perceptions of development, and understanding of climate change.

This proposed panel aims at bringing together French, Brazilians, and American researchers working in collaboration with the DURAMAZ-II project to present the integrative methodology developed for the project and a select sample of research cases with particular emphasis on the role of institutional arrangements on resource use and patterns of economic development.



The panel would also welcome papers aiming developing integrative methodologies in the Amazon and other areas of the world.
Four to five papers are proposed for the DURAMAZ-II project: -Overview of the general methodology; -Overview of the module on institutional analysis; -two to three papers discussing specific study cases where the methodology was employed.

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