Access-Authority Nexus in Farmer-Herder Conflicts

Project summary

The ‘Access-authority nexus in farmer-herder conflicts’ (AAN) project investigates the dynamic processes of formation and erosion of access, identities and authority in spatial and historical perspectives. Through a theoretical lens guided by political ecology, in particular the concepts of frontiers and territorialization, it understands farmer-herder conflicts as a dynamic process whereby people seek access and try to legitimize their resource access claims. Governing institutions (statutory, customary and hybrid) compete over the validation of claims and as a consequence constantly build, maintain, or lose their authority. This is state-building in the making. AAN offers a novel way of investigating natural resource conflicts as part of state formation. AAN has three objectives: a research objective; a capacity building objective and a dissemination objective. The expected outputs are: (a) three PhD graduates; (b) two post-docs; (c) one international PhD course on frontiers and territorialization; (d) 12 manuscripts for peer-reviewed journals; (e) one panel on farmer-herder conflicts in a major international research conference; (f) case description/documentation to be used in MSc learning activities at the Ghanaian and Danish universities; (g) eight MSc/MPhil theses; (h) ten district level stakeholder forum meetings; (i) two national level forum meetings; (j) three policy briefs; (k) a video documentary on farmer-herder conflicts; (l) one national science and policy workshop at the end of the project. The AAN team includes various disciplines, gender and career levels (early, mid and senior) from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (Ghana), the University for Development Studies (Ghana), the University of Energy and Natural Resources (Ghana) and the University of Copenhagen (Denmark).


Midterm report
(a) Three PhD Fellows have been recruited and enrolled into PhD study programs. They have taken PhD courses both in Ghana and Denmark and also started collecting field data. Two of the Fellows have completed data collection and are presently in Denmark at the University of Copenhagen for their second study stay to analyze their data and draft journal manuscripts. The third PhD student is still taking data in Ghana. (b) The two recruited post-docs have both taken field data and have both submitted journal articles which are being reviewed by the journals. They are taking additional data and preparing additional journal manuscripts. (c) A national project inception workshop was held in 2019 to introduce the project to stakeholders and create media visibility. However, scheduled district level stakeholder forums (workshops) could not be held in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID 19 restrictions that were in place. The restrictions have now been lifted and that have paved way for the scheduling of two stakeholder forums this year (1 district and 1 national).

Go back to all projects