Re-Staging La Rasgioni: Lessons Learned from Transforming a Traditional Form of Conflict Resolution to Engage Stakeholders in Agricultural Water Governance

Maria Ruiu, Sante Maurizi, Simone Sassu, Giovanna Seddaiu, Olga Zuin, Chris Blackmore, Pier Paolo Roggero

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Abstract

This paper presents an informal process inspired by a public practice of conflict mediation used until a few decades ago in Gallura (NE Sardinia, Italy), named La Rasgioni (The Reason). The aim is twofold: (i) to introduce an innovative method that translates the complexity of water-related conflicts into a “dialogical tool”, aimed at enhancing social learning by adopting theatrical techniques; and (ii) to report the outcomes that emerged from the application of this method in Arborea, the main dairy cattle district and the only nitrate-vulnerable zone in Sardinia, to mediate contrasting positions between local entrepreneurs and representatives of the relevant institutions. We discuss our results in the light of four pillars, adopted as research lenses in the International research Project CADWAGO (Climate Change Adaptation and Water Governance), which consider the specific “social–ecological” components of the Arborea system, climate change adaptability in water governance institutions and organizations, systemic governance (relational) practices, and governance learning. The combination of the four CADWAGO pillars and La Rasgioni created an innovative dialogical space that enabled stakeholders and researchers to collectively identify barriers and opportunities for effective governance practices. Potential wider implications and applications of La Rasgioni process are also discussed in the paper.
Original languageEnglish
Article number297
JournalWater
Volume9
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Apr 2017

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