Environmental Collective Action and the Border Crisis: The Emergence and Evolution of Collaborative Leadership
Posted: 22 Feb 2011
In southeast Arizona, collaborative natural resource institutions emerged through the efforts of managers, primarily government land and water managers, ranchers, and environmentalists, attempting to overcome challenging environmental problems: loss of open space, biodiversity protection, fire management, and riparian restoration and water over-appropriation. Over the past decade the escalation of smuggling and migration traffic coupled with militarization and development of border security infrastructure affected natural resource managers’ day-to-day lives and their ability to create and maintain collaborative institutions. In this paper, we highlight the struggles of collaborative leaders attempting to deal with various dimensions of the border crisis. We focus on how the leaders define and redefine their activities and approach to collaboration, as well as how other collaborative members perceive their actions and intent. The willingness and ability of leaders to innovate and adapt, as well as leverage their leadership skills and organizational resources, help to explain the persistence and evolution of environmental collective action in this border region.
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