Questions related to Collective Action
Compared to rationality & reasoning (perhaps understandably) there seems to have been relative reluctance to probe the role of collective emotions in development studies which has been focusing on human wellbeing outcomes, except perhaps as detractors.
Meanwhile empirical study and theorising is burgeoning eg in psychology & in philosophy.
While many examples of interesting articles exist, two freely available ones are:
2) This one is valuable for its findings abut four core motivators of collective action across cultures (where emotions are explicit, while several kinds of reasoning seem to be implied):
In ending his important new review, "Accountability Keywords", Jonathan Fox writes (p98):
"To sum up, this review points to at least three very distinct ways of thinking about accountability. First, it refers to tangible processes dedicated to public answerability for authorities, with clear sets of rules involving public forums, reporting, oversight, checks and balances—and consequences. Second, accountability is also grounded in relationships that are less tangible, such as invisible power, countervailing power, and the capacity to push back. A third way to think about accountability goes beyond specific processes and offers a way of seeing power relationships. After all, who is supposed to be accountable to whom is still widely debate" (my bolding)
To view this paper see: https://accountabilityresearch.org/accountability-keywords/
As I've suggested in my doctoral thesis, longstanding multidimensional theories of power offer fresh insight into categorising and understanding forms of accountability which are contested, such as social accountability.
Using such theory, the first of Fox's 3 ways of thinking about accountability above can be summarised as follows:
4D or institutional power refers to the power of formal and informal rules to make accountability as answerability powerful because it is public (and, I would add, therefore also more widely accepted as legitimate as institutional authorities become more answerable). Such 4D power is effective because it assumes and subsumes within it 'knowledge power' (3D power), 'structuring power' (2D power) and 1D power (agency or or 'doing' power, such as collective action).
However, as I suggested in my thesis, at least one more dimension of power is needed to embody power relations (who is in fact accountable to whom, and how), which I have called 5D power (e.g. collaborative social accountability). As Fox says, this is because accountability must be grounded in the invisible collective power required by citizenries to 'push back', and thus enforce public accountability. It seems to me that 4D power points to and entails 5D power because answerability is intrinsically, instrumentally and generatively relational. Under the right conditions, (which Paulo Freire, for example, elaborates on) people emancipate each other. These conditions are achievable. Accepting 5D power led me to accept relationships as necessary to define accountability, and to (re)define social accountability accordingly .
As I was working on my thesis, another dimension of power emerged as crucial: one which is empirical, and thus necessarily embedded in space and time. Such a dimension enables us, as Fox indicates above in his third way of thinking about accountability, to see (and thus to name) invisible, countervailing power relations, in the varied cultural/linguistic contexts he has so ably elucidated in this report. As power relations are named, according to their diverse contexts (viz using different languages, with all their associated subtleties of meaning), they can be collectively unmasked and engaged with.
I would call this further dimension of power '6D power'. While I did not name it as such in my thesis, I studied 6D space-time power in Chapter 7 by using nested longitudinal case studies.
Of course, using such dimensions of power does not get us far enough in accountability praxis, unless we can name what 'joins up' and integrates these dimensions, and show the processes which connect them: what and who emancipates marginalised and oppressed groups and communities, which is what I seek to do in my thesis (see concluding Chapter, Ch 9).
It is sort of funny how the world turns around. Four years ago when I started my PhD, I was asking 'environmentally active citizens', who take part in community energy and food sharing projects about, how do they think their initiatives relate to Climate Change. Most of the people could not directly connect to Climate Action. Often, it rarely made top 3 of the priorities of their initiatives
Now, four years later, everyone seems to be obsessed climate marches, climate strikes and other forms of peaceful protest.
It just leaves me with the questions of which type of action is more effective, taking small steps in improving your livelihood or marching in massive swarms? Surely, marches and mass protest are easier to be picked up by news and political agendas than small community projects but where is the silver lining?
I would highly appreciate if you can comment down below some leading works on ICA in the context of cascading disasters (disasters whose effects spread through space and time).
I prefer numerical modeling works.
I want to get my Ph.D. in social movements and protest politics in Pakistan. Are there authoritative research books/articles written on the history of social movements and protest politics in Pakistan?
After a month of search, I couldn't find a single book, though there are several research articles written on the topic but these are just case studies of some events.
Is there any theoretical work done or going on in the field?
I believe that the development of a sociological community of interests to be crucial for the consolidation of the profession of the sociologist. In many countries, weak forms of sociological association are not supporting sociologists working in non-academic settings with regards to interprofessional conflicts and a public presence that conveys and transmits the usefulness of the profession and the discipline. Sociologists rarely use the skills acquired through formal education to strengthen their position in the labor market through collective actions.
Collective actions do not always lead to a tangible outcome. It also reduces deeply rooted constraints in society.
Im looking for emerging/novel governance forms of food systems at the local level in PT. This may include recent publications on cooperative/collective action or relevant changes to the local food system. Do you have any ideas/suggestions/authors in mind?
Many thanks :)
hi i was thinking about Collective action theory & Functionalist Theory. as i want to see the sustainability of Rural water supply schemes from the perspective of stakeholders. how different actors/stakeholders are contributing towards the sustainability of water supply schemes ? Institutional actors , community actors, community based organization can collectively through a system make water supply functional ! kindly Guide me in this regard ! i will be grateful for all of your responses !
I'm working on firm-local community relationships in industrial pollution sites, with special emphasis on industrial agglomerations (or industrial clusters). I'm interested in researching how companies articulate collective strategies when managing their relationships with the local community.
Mancur Olson's The Logic of Collective Action from 1965 includes a fairly substantial account of the history of American labor unions (chapter III). Did American labor historians respond to this account, or his theory more generally? Would be grateful for literature suggestions!
As part of my research, I want to experiment with a socio-spatial analysis (through the notion of utopia) militant occupations, or not, aimed at bringing out other forms of life. A well-known example today is ZAD (Notre-Dame-des-Landes,...).
However, I want to widen the scope to forms of spatial and social expressions other than the ZAD, but also to break with the social order in which they emerge.
I will wish old cases (of the 1970s) as recent (years 2000-2010). Thank you very much in advance.
I am looking for the role of knowledge and information in informing decision making by communities and farmer's choices about surface and ground water management.
We are exploring institutional design for governing water commons, building rules and regulations for water governance, evolving systems for conjunctive use of water, role of information in informing community choices, and crop choices based on changing understanding of variability in resource availability.
Suggestions or publications on co-creating local knowledge for better collective action and local regulation leading to enhanced equity and sustainability as well as improve management of a water commons would be helpful.
I study social movements in the Midwest and have found that my informants use collective action language/approaches such as costly signaling.Ritual is also present and is used as a means to express commitment to a group goal, lack of time sink is seen in a negative light. It would be helpful to see how other populations are also expressing collective action approaches in ritual.
In some regions of the world the government controls everything by trying to force on people how to think, what to wear, how to look, what to say, how to behave, whom to support etc. etc.
As social media becomes more easily available, people spend a good proportion of their daily lives using social media, such as Telegram and WhatsApp; they express their opinion rather freely (of course with some self-censoring) hoping to bring about social reforms. Subscribers are increasingly being invited to support political causes by sharing, liking, endorsing, or downloading. Such a small contributions to a cause form a growing part of collective action today; in the name bringing about the rules of democracy. The question is: if such attempt ever succeeds in making make a difference- change for better. Would it bring a society that values diversity and nobody is scared of persecution because of they think differently.
I'm exploring collective action to create community health administration. Although, Ostrom's work relates to management of common resources, I wish to know if there's any work on public health specifically. I would appreciate any help.
In research, I have always placed a heavy emphasis on executive collaboration and primary data collection -- an action research orientation. Considered a pragmatic approach to research with practice, I often draft qualitative manuscripts. Sometimes, I find it more difficult to deal with reviewers on such manuscripts if they themselves are more focused on quantitative methods. I appreciate multiple epistemologies, which is why my work with executives has been successful to date. Yet, that is not the case with fellow colleagues and reviewers.
I'm curious to know if you have experienced similar circumstances and/or have suggestions for how to approach the submission and review process to mitigate barriers.
I am looking at the emergence of recycled water schemes in Australia and have found that the structures of social movements i.e. mobilising structures, political opportunity structures and framing structures have the potential to be used to analyse collective action by organisations enabling institutional innovation in the water sector. Apart from Hargraves et al (2006) 'Collective action model of institutional innovation' I havent come across others working in this area...
Under the traditional production systems, smallholders are getting more irrelevant given the changing market structure as consumer preferences continues to evolve. The situation is expected to worse in the advent of climate change impacts. Therefore, establishing framework for sustaining and enhancing smallholder producers participation in the supply chain holds potential to address the escalating poverty levels among the rural population as well as enhancing food availability among non-farming households.
While we have been trying to develop small scale irrigation schemes in a mountainous Ethiopian highlands, we have encountered a problem as the land where the spring eye emerged belong to a small scale farmer without any irrigable land around. We are looking for appropriate incentive mechanisms to convince the farmer allow the use of the spring water for the collective benefit of the community. Any experience to share?
Literature/publication related to riots, mass violence and collective behavior can also be helpful. Any help in this regards can be helpful and will be appreciated.
I am looking for studies done focusing on how formal and informal institutions at the community level aid towards enhancing efforts towards collective action and hence social capital.
I'm looking for academic research showing how you can practically increase Collective Efficacy in a neighbourhood. A lot has been said about what collective efficacy is, and the circumstances in which you find high Collective Efficacy - but not a lot on how you actually do it. I have looked at James Nolans work in the USA and Tim Curtis in the UK - any other ideas/leads welcome.