Open Sessions

SOU 12 - The place and role of traditional authorities in the management of natural resources

20 Nov

20 November

14:30 to 17:30

Venue: Hivernage (Hotel Hivernage)


Groupe Observation des Dynamiques Sociales, Spatiales et Expertise Endogène(Odyssee)

Tel: (+223) 20 28 07 72




For several decades, African countries have been engaged in decentralization reforms to ensure better local governance and more coherent territorial development. To better understand these ongoing territorial dynamics, the ODYSSEE Group has set up a Decentralization and Territorial Dynamics Observation Mechanism which has carried out various studies and research, including those relating to the relationship between traditional authorities and local authorities around the challenges of natural resource management. An international symposium was organized in February 2017 to serve as a forum for exchanges between researchers from Africa and Europe. The session will focus on the main results of studies conducted on the general issue of the role of traditional authorities in decentralization contexts. It will also be an opportunity to share the main conclusions and recommendations of the international symposium held in Bamako in February 2017. During the session, the different types of relationships between traditional authorities and local authorities will be highlighted, both in Mali and in other African countries. The exchanges will make it possible to initiate a forward-looking reflection on the policies and strategies that local and regional authorities should consider in order to address land and environmental issues with a view to a transition to sustainable territories. At the end of the discussions, a draft set of recommendations will be adopted for national governments, modern and traditional local authorities, and recommendations for better governance of natural resources. The objective of this meeting is to share the knowledge developed on the nature, contours and content of traditional power relations with local authorities on issues related to natural resources in Africa.




In terms of methodology, the session is organized as follows: two presentations respectively on

  1. the role of traditional powers in decentralization contexts,
  2. traditional powers in natural resource management issues.

panelists’ reactions to the substantive presentations;

reaction of the room to the presentations of the speakers and panelists;

elements of the speakers’ and panelists’ responses.


Parallel Sessions