Perceptions of stakeholders in a water stewardship initiative : Wolseley, South Africa

Chihumbiri, Faith Kudzai (2019-04)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY : In recent years, most development initiatives have been framed within the context of sustainable development. Project implementation has placed emphasis on a balanced integration of social and environmental objectives with economic development; drawing on the participation of people from different and diverse backgrounds to rally around implementing solutions to a common challenge. This approach also referred to as a multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder participatory approach, seeks to give a broad set of stakeholders more of a say in decision-making and project implementation. It is recommended, and has been applied in addressing developmental challenges, beginning at an international level, cascading down to the national, regional and local levels. A literature study and case study approach were used in this study. The case study explored how the multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder participatory approach has been implemented in an initiative focused on alien vegetation clearing and water security in the Wolseley area in the Cape Winelands District Municipality in the Western Cape, South Africa. The case study was developed through engaging and capturing insights of various stakeholders involved in the initiative. A sample of these stakeholders was drawn from various stakeholder groups ranging from provincial and local government levels, the private sector, private contractors involved in clearing of alien vegetation and their employees as well as the local landowners in the Wolseley area. Data was collected from both primary and secondary sources. Primary data was obtained through methods such as interviews, administering a questionnaire, discussions and observations, while secondary data was obtained through searching library databases and the internet for relevant government laws, policies and regulations, journals, organisational reports, brochures, and prior research carried out on the subjects of participation, sustainable development and water security. The feedback was collated into a coherent narrative of the initiative and the data was subjected to both quantitative and qualitative analysis to better understand the stakeholders’ perceptions and attitudes regarding participating in the initiative. Findings from the study showed that each of the stakeholders and stakeholder groups had different reasons for engaging in collective alien clearing of vegetation. Reasons ranged from delivering on institutional responsibilities for the government department and private sector institutions, support in realising regulatory requirements and reliance on water to support livelihood options for the land owners and a source of income and job creation for the contractors. The contractors’ employees appreciated the wages brought through having a job in the alien clearing process. However, the cumulative collective motivation was to manage and reduce the spread of alien vegetation in Wolseley, as well as contribute to an improved water security profile for the Upper Breede River Catchment. The study coincided with the period during which the Western Cape Province experienced a severe drought. To this end, the Western Cape Government identified water security as posing a major risk towards its effective delivery of services. Some key factors and principles that were identified as contributing towards the seemingly successful engagement in this initiative included converging to address a common challenge and the prospective benefits for each stakeholder, visible project impacts, clarity of purpose, effective communication and coordination as well as engagement and consultation with land owners in the catchment through the embedded Programme Coordinator. These factors and principles need to be taken into consideration to enhance the participatory approach in management of alien vegetation in the Upper Breede River Catchment Area. The study made recommendations on topics and key issues for further investigation to better understand factors and elements that influence perceptions and participation of stakeholders in environmental management initiatives with the intention to continuously improve the engagement process, contribute towards sustainable water security in strategic water source areas and broadly towards sustainable development. Wolseley Water Stewardship Initiative (WWSI) was the term used to refer to the collaborative action on clearing alien vegetation in Wolseley.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : In die afgelope jaar is die meeste ontwikkelingsinisiatiewe binne die konteks van volhoubare ontwikkeling opgestel. Die implementering van projekte het klem gelê op ’n gebalanseerde integrasie van maatskaplike en omgewingsdoelwitte met ekonomiese ontwikkeling; met deelname van mense van verskillende en diverse agtergronde wat saamwerk om oplossings vir ’n gemeenskaplike uitdaging te implementeer. Hierdie benadering, wat ook as ’n multisektorale en multi-belanghebbende deelnemende benadering beskou word, het ten doel om ’n breë stel belanghebbendes meer sê te gee in besluitneming. Dit word aanbeveel, en is aangewend om ontwikkelingsuitdagings aan te pak, beginnende vanaf die internasionale vlak, tot die nasionale-, streeks-, en plaaslike vlakke. ’n Literatuurstudie en gevallestudie-benadering is in hierdie studie gebruik. Die gevallestudie het ondersoek ingestel na hoe die multisektorale en multi-belanghebbende deelnemende benadering geïmplementeer is in ’n inisiatief wat gefokus is op skoonmaak van uitheemse plantegroei en water sekuriteit, in die Wolseley-gebied in die Kaapse Wynland Distriksmunisipaliteit in die Wes-Kaap, Suid-Afrika. Die gevallestudie is ontwikkel deur insigte van verskeie belanghebbendes wat by die inisiatief betrokke was, te betrek en vas te lê. ’n Steekproef van hierdie belanghebbendes is getrek uit verskeie belanghebbendesgroepe wat wissel van provinsiale en plaaslike regeringsvlakke, die privaatsektor, private kontrakteurs wat betrokke is by die skoonmaak van uitheemse plantegroei en hul werknemers, asook die plaaslike grondeienaars in die Wolseley-gebied. Data is van beide primêre en sekondêre bronne versamel. Primêre data is verkry deur middel van metodes soos onderhoude, die administrasie van ’n vraelys, besprekings en waarnemings, terwyl sekondêre data verkry is deur die nagaan van biblioteekdatabasisse en die internet vir toepaslike regeringswette, beleide en regulasies, tydskrifte, organisatoriese verslae, brosjures en vorige navorsing wat uitgevoer is oor die vlakke van deelname, volhoubare ontwikkeling en watersekuriteit. Die terugvoer is saamgevat in ’n samehangende vertelling van die inisiatief en die data is onderworpe aan beide kwantitatiewe en kwalitatiewe analise om die belanghebbendes se persepsies en houdings ten opsigte van deelname aan die inisiatief, beter te verstaan. Bevindinge uit die studie het getoon dat elkeen van die belanghebbendes en belangegroepe verskillende redes gehad het om betrokke te raak in kollektiewe skoonmaak van uitheemse plantegroei. Redes wissel van die lewering van institusionele verantwoordelikhede vir die staatsdepartement en instansies van die private sektor, ondersteuning in die realisering van regulatoriese vereistes vir die grondeienaars, en ’n bron van inkomste en werkskepping vir die kontrakteurs. Die werknemers van die kontrakteurs het die lone vir werk in die uitheemse skoonmaakproses waardeer. Die kumulatiewe kollektiewe motivering was egter om die verspreiding van uitheemse plantegroei in Wolseley te bestuur en te verminder, sowel as om by te dra tot ’n verbeterde waterbeveiligingsprofiel vir die Bo-Breederivieropvanggebied. Die studie het saamgeval met die tydperk waartydens die Wes-Kaap ernstige droogte ondervind het, wat daartoe gelei het dat die Wes-Kaapse Regering watersekuriteit tot ’n risiko vir ondernemings in die provinsie verhef het. Enkele belangrike faktore en beginsels wat geïdentifiseer is as bydraend tot die oënskynlik suksesvolle betrokkenheid in hierdie inisiatief, het ingesluit die bymekaarkoms om ’n gemeenskaplike uitdaging aan te spreek, sigbare projek-impakte, vertroue tussen mense in die netwerk en betrokkenheid en konsultasie met grondeienaars in die opvanggebied deur die ingebedde Programkoördineerder. Hierdie faktore en beginsels behoort in ag geneem te word om die deelnemende benadering in die bestuur van uitheemse plantegroei in die Bo-Breederivieropvangsgebied te verbeter. Die studie bied aanbevelings oor onderwerpe en sleutelkwessies vir verdere ondersoek ten einde faktore en elemente wat persepsies en deelname van belanghebbendes in omgewingsbestuursinisiatiewe beïnvloed, beter te verstaan, met die doel om die deelnemingsproses deurlopend te verbeter, by te dra tot volhoubare watersekuriteit in strategiese waterbrongebiede en ook breedweg tot volhoubare ontwikkeling. Hierdie studie het die naam bedink en verwys na hierdie inisiatief as die ‘Wolseley Water Opsigterskap Initiatief’ (WWOI).

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/106189
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