Pastoralism and Common Pool Resources: Rangeland co-management, property rights and access in Mongolia, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Pastoralism and Common Pool Resources

Rangeland co-management, property rights and access in Mongolia, 1st Edition

By Sandagsuren Undargaa


272 pages | 64 B/W Illus.

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The grazing of animals on common land and associated property rights were the original basis of the concept of "the tragedy of the commons". Drawing on the classic work of Elinor Ostrom and the readings of political ecology, this book questions the application of exclusive property rights to mobile pastoralism and rangeland resource governance. It argues that this approach inadequately represents property relations in the context of Mongolian pastoralism.

The author presents an in-depth exploration and analysis of mobile pastoral production and resource management in Mongolia. The country is widely considered to be a prime example of successful and resilient common pool resource management, but now faces a dilemma as policy advocates attempt to adjust historical pastoralism to a modern property regime framework.

The book strengthens understanding of the complex and multilateral considerations involved in natural resource governance and management in a mobile pastoralist context. It considers the implications for common pool resource management and pastoral societies in Africa, Russia and China and includes recommendations for formulating national policy.


"Sandagsuren Undargaa has written an excellent book. Utilizing common pool resource theory and access theory, she has developed a conceptual framework for analyzing the institutional, legal, socio-economic and political processes shaping mobile pastoralism in Mongolia. A convincing work regarding the dynamics shaping property relations, land and resource access in Mongolia which is of wide relevance."John F. McCarthy, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.

"In the newly published book, Pastoralism and Common Pool Resources: Rangeland co-management, property rights and access in Mongolia, author Undargaa ‘puts property in its place’. Using Mongolia as a case study, Undargaa highlights the inability of contemporary institutional theories to adequately recognize other production components of the mobile pastoral economy, such as labour and livestock. In doing so, she brings a fresh perspective to the Mongolian literature in this space and, perhaps more importantly, maps out potential institutional avenues for resolving the symptomatic issues of elite capture, conflict and lost production opportunities." - Jane Addison in Pastoralism (December 2017)

Table of Contents

1. Mobile Pastoralism, Access and Policy

2. Understanding Common Pool Resource Management and Rangeland Management

3. Mobile Pastoralism and the Pre-collective Period (13th -20th Century)

4. Mobile Pastoralism and the Collectivization (1921-1991)

5. Pastoral Production and Pastureland Management During Transition to a Market Economy

6. Land Reform in Pastureland Management

7. Community-based Natural Resource Management

8. State Territorial Strategy for Natural Resource Governance and Pastoral Production

9. Conclusion

About the Author

Sandagsuren Undargaa is a Development Researcher with fifteen years of experience in environmental management and development. She recently completed her PhD at the Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Natural Resources
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / Rural