An exploration of the implementation of global REDD+ policy in Nigeria's neo-patrimonial context : implications for sustainable development
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REDD+ is a global programme for disbursing funds, primarily to pay national governments in developing countries to reduce forest carbon emission. REDD+ is presently translated from global discourse into national arena amidst on-the-ground realities of weak governance, corruption, and power struggles. This thesis responds to these concerns towards implementing REDD+ policy sustainably. In the last 5 years, Nigeria REDD+ went through a national readiness phase and is piloted at sub-national scale. However, its governance is essentially a political process likely to face strong opposition from those benefiting from the status quo. This thesis conducts an exploratory analysis to investigate how global REDD+ policy discourse transforms in a local political setting, to have in-depth understanding of how different forms of governance influence forest policy outcomes. I draw on political ecology in an investigation of the politics over forest management and builds on a modified ‘4Is’ analytical framework – Institutions, Interests, Ideas and Information – to explore actors’ perceptions to analyse REDD+. The study was qualitative in design and employed the triangulation approach, participant observation, document analysis, FGDs and interview methods to establish the problem. Unpacking REDD+ design and implementation interaction could holistically identify intrinsic institutional impediments in the context of sustainable development. An analysis brings up a number of key issues. Actor constellations understand, interpret and implement REDD+ through a ‘complex’ governance setting, deeply entrenched political system. This limit the potential for transforming a business-as-usual to achieve emissions reductions. I question the naïve assumption that Nigeria REDD+ is a “win-win” strategy under the ‘rules of the game’, as against the performed ‘tricks of the game’ embedded in the political context. Throughout this thesis I argue that Nigeria REDD+ is seized upon as an opportunity to promote neo-patrimonial governance system. Findings suggest therefore, the potential for its long-term sustainability will be a challenge.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
Embargo Date: 2022-08-31
Embargo Reason: Thesis restricted in accordance with University regulations. Print and electronic copy restricted until 31st August 2022
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