Institutional Adaptive Capacity of Coastal Resource Management in Cambodia and Vietnam

Stream: Panel 50 - Environmental Politics: Resistance, Activism and Resilience 
Date: Tuesday, 27 September 2016
Time: 4.00 pm – 5.30 pm


Responding to environmental change requires a better understanding of how institutions – the rules and norms that structure human interactions – enable society to adapt to impacts of such change. By drawing on the Adaptive Capacity Wheel and Institutional Analysis and Development frameworks and empirical cases of coastal resource management decentralisation in the context of the Peam Krasaop Wildlife Sanctuary (Cambodia) and Tam Giang Lagoon (Vietnam), this study examines how institutions support adaptive capacity. The characteristics of institutions analysed both facilitated and constrained adaptive capacity, depending on the enabling and disabling conditions at play. Despite the constraints, institutions have, to a certain extent, enabled actors to: organise themselves; learn and improve resource management; mobilise leadership, resources and authority; and, make progress towards improved governance. These illustrate the creation and mobilisation of adaptive capacity, which resulted in positive outcomes in responding to environmental change. In some of the cases studied, reinforcing enabling conditions of adaptive capacity will require creating livelihood alternatives, alleviating poverty, reducing inequality, and building human and social capital.


Pedro Fidelman (Presenter), Sustainability Research Centre, University of the Sunshine Coast
Adjunct Fellow at the Sustainability Research Centre of the University of the Sunshine Coast

Tuyen Van Truong, Hue University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam

Nong Kim, Ministry of Environment, Cambodia

Melissa Nursey-Bray, University of Adelaide