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Steering across scales: applying Strategic-Relational Approach to a study of land mobilisation for road widening in Kochi

By Angelique Chettiparamb


This paper argues for the relevance of paying attention to structuring participation processes across scales as one of the ways in which participation of multi-organisational partnerships that involve conflicting interests might be managed. Issue wise the paper deals with problems in connection with land mobilisation for road widening in complex and concentrated high value urban settings. It discusses a case study of plan implementation involving individual landowners, the land development market, the local government, other governmental and non-governmental organisations and the state government, which together achieved objectives that seemed impossible at first sight. In theoretical terms, the paper engages with Jessop's (2001) Strategic-Relational Approach (SRA), arguing for its potential for informing action in a way that is capable of achieving steering outputs. The claim for SRA is demonstrated by re-examining the case study. The factors that come through as SRA is applied are drawn out and it is suggested that the theory though non-deterministic, helps guide action by highlighting certain dynamics of systems that can be used for institutional intervention. These dynamics point to the importance of paying attention to scale and the way in which participation and negotiation processes are structured so as to favour certain outcomes rather than other

Publisher: Wiley
Year: 2007
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