The institutional architecture of extractive reserves in Rondonia, Brazil

Katrina Brown, Sergio Rosendo

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39 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the evolution and development of institutions involved in the establishment of extractive reserves. It focuses on the different actors, organizations and projects concerned with extractive reserves in Rondônia in western Amazonia, Brazil. Extractive reserves are widely seen as a means of integrating forest conservation and local socio-economic development. As such, they have gained the support of the international environmental movement, multilateral and state development organizations, and grassroots community and producer organizations. These institutions represent a vast array of diverse interests which range from conservation of biodiversity, economic and social cohesion, and regional and national development. Whilst the various actors and institutions claim mutual and complementary interests, they form shifting alliances and coalitions in order to further their interests. This paper maps these institutions and interests and describes how alliances have been formed and broken, and how this has contributed to the currently observed implementation of extractive reserves. The paper argues that extractive reserves are constrained by the dissonance or misfit in discourses and underlying worldviews, reflected by the aims and objectives, of the institutions which promote, oppose and lose and benefit from their implementation. This misfit is overcome, in part, by alliances formed between the different institutions, and in part by the creation of new institutions and projects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-48
Number of pages14
JournalThe Geographical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000

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