Actors and networks in resource conflict resolution under climate change in rural Kenya
Abstract. The change from consensual decision-making arrangements into centralized hierarchical chieftaincy schemes through colonization disrupted many rural conflict resolution mechanisms in Africa. In addition, climate change impacts on land use have introduced additional socio-ecological factors that complicate rural conflict dynamics. Despite the current urgent need for conflict-sensitive adaptation, resolution efficiency of these fused rural institutions has hardly been documented. In this context, we analyse the Loitoktok network for implemented resource conflict resolution structures and identify potential actors to guide conflict-sensitive adaptation. This is based on social network data and processes that are collected using the saturation sampling technique to analyse mechanisms of brokerage. We find that there are three different forms of fused conflict resolution arrangements that integrate traditional institutions and private investors in the community. To effectively implement conflict-sensitive adaptation, we recommend the extension officers, the council of elders, local chiefs and private investors as potential conduits of knowledge in rural areas. In conclusion, efficiency of these fused conflict resolution institutions is aided by the presence of holistic resource management policies and diversification in conflict resolution actors and networks.