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Open AccessArticle

Land Competition under Telecoupling: Distant Actors’ Environmental versus Economic Claims on Land in North-Eastern Madagascar

1
Centre for Development and Environment, University of Bern, Mittelstrasse 43, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland
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Institute of Geography, University of Bern, Hallerstrasse 12, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland
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Institute of Political Science, University of Bern, Fabrikstrasse 8, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland
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Natural Resource Policy Group, Institute of Environmental Decisions, ETH Zürich, Universitätstrasse 22, CH-8092 Zürich, Switzerland
5
Eawag (Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science & Technology), Überlandstrasse 133, CH-8600 Dübendorf, Switzerland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(3), 851; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11030851
Received: 10 December 2018 / Revised: 25 January 2019 / Accepted: 28 January 2019 / Published: 6 February 2019
In north-eastern Madagascar, maintenance of biodiversity competes with expansion of land for agriculture and mining. The concept of “telecoupling” provides a framework for analysis of distant actors and institutions that influence local land use decisions. However, there is a lack of knowledge regarding the extent of telecoupling of land governance in north-eastern Madagascar and a lack of evidence regarding its role in driving land use change and land competition. Using a descriptive Social Network Analysis, we disentangled distant interactions between actors in terms of flows and institutions. Our findings show that the domains of economic and environmental interactions are dominated by actors from different sectors that have claims on the same land but generally do not interact. Distant influences occurring via remote flows of goods, money, and institutions serve to reinforce local land competition. Balancing economic and environmental land claims for more sustainable regional development in north-eastern Madagascar requires collaboration between actors across sectors, scales, and domains. View Full-Text
Keywords: Land system science; land governance; land competition; telecoupling; Social Network Analysis; Madagascar Land system science; land governance; land competition; telecoupling; Social Network Analysis; Madagascar
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Andriamihaja, O.R.; Metz, F.; Zaehringer, J.G.; Fischer, M.; Messerli, P. Land Competition under Telecoupling: Distant Actors’ Environmental versus Economic Claims on Land in North-Eastern Madagascar. Sustainability 2019, 11, 851.

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