Ph.D. Candidate, Sociology of Law. Lund University Centre of Excellence for the Integration of Social and Natural Dimensions of Sustainability (LUCID) Ph.D. Programme, Lund University, 2009 –
Master of Science, Lund University Masters Programme in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science (LUMES), Lund University, 2005
B. Sc. Honours (Geographical Science), University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, 2000
B. Sc. (Majors: Geographical Science and Zoology), University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, 1999
A critical analysis of wetland governance in South Africa: A case study of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park in Northern KwaZulu Natal.
My interests lie in the sustainable governance of wetland resources in South Africa. It is estimated that between 40 and 60 % of South Africa’s wetlands have been lost, mainly due to infrastructure and urban development and mining. This brings to the fore the tensions between development and wetland conservation in South Africa, where there is a need to balance economic and social development, especially poverty alleviation and the provision of basic services such as housing, with the conservation of natural resources.
Normative concepts in the context of water governance include those of justice; democratization and public participation; ecological integrity; and intersectional and intergenerational equity. Nevertheless, these norms are challenged by dominant development discourses, such as “Water for Economic Growth”, that emphasize neo-liberalization, globalization and economic growth led development. My project aims to critically explore issues around conflicting norms and discourses in the water governance sector. Research conducted will centre on an assessment of the appropriateness of the traditional economic growth led policy paradigm for wetland conservation in South Africa. The question will be addressed specifically with regard to the limitations of a legal regulation towards wetland conservation, in the context of pressing social development needs. The case study focus will be on the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, in northern KwaZulu Natal.
Publications and papers
Nastar, M. & M. Hansen, 2009. Water legislation – what values, which ways? Institutional path dependency and transition management in integrated water resource management in South Africa. Paper presentation at the 2009 Amsterdam Conference on the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change, 2 – 4 December 2009, Amsterdam, The Netherlands