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Finding a way to legality, local coordination modes and public policies in large-scale irrigation schemes in Algeria and Morocco

Errahj M., Kuper M., Faysse N., Djebbara M.. 2009. Irrigation and Drainage, 58 (3) : S358-S369.

The design of public policy related to irrigation sectors in North Africa was often based on the state view. Local farmers' organizations, made up of family farms, did not contribute to building the legal framework, which was in turn unable to propose specific solutions for family farming. Legal reforms currently underway in Morocco and Algeria show how difficult it is to integrate field realities. Access to land and water resources is often obtained through informal local coordination modes. The purpose of this paper is to clarify how collective action can integrate the dynamics of local coordination modes and contribute to the formulation of public policies. The underlying hypothesis is that by doing so, the public policies can be continuously renewed and will be more appropriate and robust, and consequently favour rural development. We show that local coordination modes, presently often invisible or even illegal, can help farmers to go beyond survival strategies by providing access to more formal development spheres and policy making. These results should encourage development and extension agencies to redefine collective action as a tool of learning and empowerment centred on the co-construction of public policies. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : gestion des eaux; eau d'irrigation; exploitation agricole familiale; algérie; maroc

Thématique : Economie et politique agricoles; Ressources en eau et leur gestion; Economie familiale et artisanale

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