From foresight exercise to operative rules for the collective use of water resources: the case of Niayes in Senegal

Delay Etienne, Hubert Aline, Camara Astou Diaw, Faye Amy, Bourgeois Robin, Jahel Camille. 2020. From foresight exercise to operative rules for the collective use of water resources: the case of Niayes in Senegal. . IASC. s.l. : IASC, Résumé, 1 p. IASC 2020 Web Conference on African Commons, 13 July 2020/27 July 2020.

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Titre français : De l'exercice de prospective aux règles opérationnelles pour l'utilisation collective des ressources en eau : le cas des Niayes au Sénégal

Matériel d'accompagnement : 1 diaporama (37 vues)

Abstract : In the Niayes region, part of Senegal's drylands, population growth, extractive activities and irrigated agriculture, with a background of climate change, lead to the depletion of natural resources on which people depend for their livelihood. We assume that an approach combining foresight analysis and the development of a game will enable stakeholders to move from projecting into the future to planning concrete actions. Regarding first the territory as a Common for the foresight exercise, we then consider water resources as the key Common (CTFD 2017) around which the main issues are articulated in order to develop a game that will be an intermediary phase to imagine freely the actions to implement. The first step consisted in exploring possible contrasted futures of the Niayes up to 2040. We conducted a foresight exercise involving fifteen local experts. They established a collective diagnosis of past and present dynamics of the Niayes, that permitted to identificate 42 factors of change. They then conducted a structural analysis of these factors to select 6 related driving forces, including the groundwater resource. They imagined their alternative plausible states in 2040, and built scenarios based on coherent combinations of these states. From each of the six final scenarios, the expert established a path of actions to connect them with the present situation of the Niayes (Camara et al. 2019). The actions were numerous and covered different sectors, however they were not precise enough to concretely design specific strategies. For instance, action concerning water resources was no more precise than “having a good water management”. In order to develop concrete strategies from this general action of water management, we developed a prototypal game board with local and national experts using à ComMod Approach (Barreteau et al. 2003). Our game session objectives, was to propose a virtual arena that allows the players (4, 5 or 6 players + the public) to: i) perceive the scarcity of the resource ii) the influence that each one can have on it iii) collectively they can find a way out of the tragedy of the commons. The game board integrates in an original way a representation of the water table containing real water that each player will have to draw from. The game approach allows them to explore and understand what type of local and/or global regulations they can put in place locally to influence the state of the resource (Le Page et Perrotton 2017). We imagined being able to play several boards simultaneously to collectively explore changes of scale in the rules of governance (exploring the concept of the groundwater committee).

Résumé (autre langue) : n processus de construction de jeux qui s'inscrit à la suite des ateliers de prospectives “Niyaes 2040” organisés par Camille Jahel (C. Camara, R. Bourgeois, C. Jahel, 2019) avec le soutien de nombreux collègues. Suite au backcasting, nous avons identifié les actions que nous pouvions tester dans un jeu afin de formaliser les réactions des joueurs en vue de modéliser des processus sociaux. La plupart des actions identifiées et que nous voulons tester s'organise en deux grandes thématiques : i) les questions foncières et ii) les questions autour de la gestion de l'eau. En effet, l'eau est dans la zone un processus clef dans le Niayes, et le foncier et très fortement lié aux questions agricoles. Tous les acteurs agricoles (mais pas que) dépendent des ressources en eau, mais les règles de gestion sont attendues de l'Etat, qui de son côté n'est pas en mesure de contrôler

Mots-clés libres : Water, Irrigation, Senegal, Commons, ComMod

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Delay Etienne, CIRAD-ES-UPR GREEN (FRA) ORCID: 0000-0001-6633-6269
  • Hubert Aline, GRET (FRA)
  • Camara Astou Diaw, ISRA (SEN)
  • Faye Amy, ISRA (SEN)
  • Bourgeois Robin, CIRAD-ES-UMR ART-DEV (FRA)
  • Jahel Camille, CIRAD-ES-UMR TETIS (SEN)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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