Research Proposal - Common Pool Resources {SOLVED}


Proposed Research Topic: Governance of Lake Water as common pool resource – A case of Costa Mesa City of California.

Research Area

Our group is proposing to inspect “Lake Water” as a common pool resource being provided by the City Council of Costa Mesa. The City Council of Costa Mesa is a local government provision unit in the California, US. Costa Mesa City Hall is located at 77 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa, Calif. 92626. ( and is authorized with the office of Mayor Stephen Mensinger, for governance of the Costa Mesa City, California. Members of the local government provision unit are elected officials, such as Katrina Foley (elected to the Costa Mesa City Council for the third time in 2014), Sandy Genis (elected in 2012 as first among eight candidates for the Costa Mesa city council) and Gary Monahan (served as Mayor Pro-Tem from 1996 to 1998 and currently a member of Costa Mesa city council) (Costa Mesa Gov. Official, 2015).
Our group will inspect the role of Planning Division in Department of Development Services ( in the production of Lake Water as a common pool resource. The Department of Development Services is a local government production because it implements regulations of the Zoning Code and the goals/policies/objectives of the General Plan passed by the City Council of Costa Mesa and because its employees are appointed. Appointed employees of the Development Services department include Gary Armstrong is the director, Claire Flynn is the assistant director, Randy Buck is chief of inspection, Silvia Kennerson is management analyst etc (Costa Mesa Govt. Official, 2015).

Scope of Study

For human life to continue and thrive into the uncertain future, mechanical practices must use resources in practical ways. Not just such situation at present, yet programs that would prompt economical asset utilization are hampered by disappointments to admire the full scope of assets that do figure in human survival. Monetary hypotheses which characterize what is to consider an asset can essentially bend the issue of measuring asset utilization in two pivotal ways. First and foremost, the particular centre of financial hypothesis can totally neglect to perceive a resource where one exists. Second, financial classes can be excessively wide, lumping together resources that need to be recognized, or in those situations where qualifications are made between sorts of assets, neglecting to draw the refinements at the right point. Both blunders straightforwardly impact mechanical outlines. Advancements that erroneously regard certain assets as boundless open goods or, much more terrible, neglect to perceive particular regular methods as profitable assets, can contribute, by accident, to the exhaustion and even pulverization of those resources.
A common pool resource circumstance is one where various users earn suitable profits from an imparted resource and these profits are adversary, implying that the peripheral expense of utilization is certain and actually expanding (Oakerson, 1992). These expenses can be time costs, fiscal expenses, or vitality costs. Allotment of units by one client forces an expense on different clients when those units are no more accessible for others' utilization and it takes additional time, exertion, and cash to catch remaining benefits. A common pool resource issue happens when the aggregate result of allocation could be enhanced with option institutions (Gardner, 1990). Institutions are the formal and casual guidelines that lucid connections between people; they characterize an arrangement of decisions accessible to monetary specialists through limitations and opportunities on conduct that influence impetuses (Schmid, 2004). Elective organizations produce elective decisions, which bring about option results. The primary compositions on common pool resources accepted that the circumstance of numerous resources consumer would dependably prompt the same result: decimation of the asset. Scientists accepted that privatization or state obstruction were the best alternatives for avoiding asset over misuse. Less rushed examinations of CPR circumstances have brought about a far reaching group of examination adding to a hypothesis of effective aggregate activity. The objective in this field of exploration is to recognize variables prompting persisting CPR organizations that advance maintainable utilization of the resouce while diminishing clash between appropriators (Bromley, 1992). The recognizable proof of these variables will prompt the expectation of effective common pool resource administration circumstances and will help to make foundations that alleviate the externalities created by common pool resource predicaments (Ostrom, 1990). These organizations are fruitful in light of the fact that they bring down the expenses of exchanges between common pool resource clients. All exchanges between monetary performing artists have related expenses, which are characterized as"the estimation of chances surrendered when any activity is embraced" where the worth is controlled by every financial performer (Schmid, 2004). Common pool resource circumstances are fruitful when information, negotiating, observing, and authorization expenses are restricted by attributes of the resource, the resource consumer, the institutional operation plans, and the earth outside to the common pool resource circumstance (Agrawal, 2001).
The studies on common pool resources and common property has developed quickly in the most recent two decades, see for instance (Ostrom, 1990) (Schmid, 2004). All inclusive pervasive worries about natural debasement and asset consumption have empowered this development. Disappointments credited to state administration and business sector arranged strategies have made group appealing to numerous approach creators as an option performing artist to administer backwoods, pastures, water, and fisheries. Understanding from understudies of regular property has discovered broad interpretation as arrangement advancements, with numerous governments decentralizing ecological administration and advancing group based protection (Li, 1996). In numerous occurrences, these strategy movements are reclassifying groups, asset administration, and nearby courses of action to represent the commons. Common pool resources have interesting qualities, and one of them is that the results of usage are aggregate, not single person. Everybody that uses a common pool resource is characteristically subject to others that has admittance to that common pool resource. Looking at the situation objectively for a minute, you'll understand that the air we inhale is typically a common pool resource.
It is a false dichotomy to say there are just private and public goods. There are two different sorts of products, toll merchandise and regular pool assets. As noted by Dr. Vincent Ostrom, goods can be listed by two qualities: excludability and subtractability. Economists allude to subtractability as "rivalness." Essentially the idea alludes to how a great part of the product is left after utilization. Our introductory thought may be that none of the product is left over, which is valid for private products like what you would purchase on a market rack, yet not valid for different goods, in the same way as public transportation. After you have touched base at your destination and left the transport, the seat remains vacant and another person can utilize it. There is some "subtractability," in that while you are possessing the seat there is one less seat accessible, however general public products are noted for their close to zero subtractability and private merchandise are noted for their just about complete subtractability.
The other trait, excludability, alludes to both the expense to avoid customers and the expense of barring consumers. It is conceivable to encase a water source inside a wall, for an ostensible sum, yet in the event if that water source is the main hotspot for drinking water, that prohibition brings about death. Since water is subtractable, and the expense of barring consumers is high, water is a common pool resource.

Background of Study

A common pool resource has a high cost of prohibition and is subtractable (rival), (Ostrom and Gardner, 1993). A high exclusion cost product is one where the profits of the product are higher to eliminate others from (Schmid, 2004). In a resource circumstance, this outcomes in numerous consumers extricating the product, prompting an expanding expense of appropriation and potential devastation of the resource (Hardin, 1968)A resource that is subtractable, or adversary (rival), has the trademark that any unit appropriated from the asset decreases the sum accessible to different clients by one unit (Oakerson, 1992). The consequence of a high exclusion cost product that is subtractable is an expansive number of clients who have motivating force to catch present advantages to the detriment of future availability to guarantee that they provide profit from the resource before it is crushed by the population. These appropriators have a high rebate rate and no motivation to limit their utilization (Ostrom, 1990). At the point when society overall values the profits from the asset with a lower rebate rate than the appropriators, then new organizations are fabricated to compel appropriators to lower extraction rates and match societal values (Runge, 1981). (Hardin, 1968) contended that privatization or nationalization of a typical pool asset will shield it from over exploitation. The development of exploration on CPR foundations has gone from ID of incentives for appropriators to overexploit to distinguishing proof of attributes of the CPR circumstance and establishments encompassing it that have brought about enduring utilization of the asset/resource.
Stakeholders need to have a stronger say in the outline of game plans for overseeing common pool resources, such courses of action fundamentally differ as indicated by nearby financial and biophysical conditions. The handover of common pool resources administration to consumers is as a rule attractive, however must be in view of sound comprehension of the heterogeneity of clients' necessities and of the spatial and fleeting parts of formal and casual rights. The 'gestion de terroirs' methodology has confinements: specifically, it has a tendency to support sedentarised resource users. Diverse levels of associations have distinctive parts to play in resource users administration and clear comprehension of these must go before arrangement activities. The state has vital parts to play in determination of disputes, checking the usage of resource utilization assertions, giving specialized and administration backing to nearby associations and doing ecological evaluations.
High exclusion expenses permit clients to get profit from a good without paying for it i.e free riding when the expense of the good is conceived by different clients in the gathering. In The Logic of Collective Action, (Olson, 1971) portrays a circumstance where every extra client of a good makes no expense to a gathering of clients as far as units lost; however, the model contains a critical talk of conduct that, in a CPR circumstance, can prompt imperfect results. Olson makes the critical point that free rider conduct will decrease commitments to pay for the procurement of the good in light of the fact that free riders won't contribute if expenses are bigger than the profits gave by their peripheral commitments. Those individuals will advantage from the good without bearing any of the expenses. While this can decrease the measure of the good accessible, at times to zero, in a few gatherings, free riding conduct won't influence the procurement of the good. This is because of the activities of a favoured gathering. These are individuals from the gathering who profit such a great amount from the presence of the general population good that, paying little respect to free riding action, they pay to give the whole good. In an asset use circumstance, free riding action happens when one gathering of client’s limits utilization to lower extraction costs or for maintainability and an alternate gathering of clients don't. The individuals who don't limit their utilization advantage from the low extraction expenses and future accessibility without surrendering any present increase.
There are two sorts of chances for aggregate activity found in the vicinity of these conditions. To start with, when the profit to resource clients of partaking in aggregate activity is more noteworthy than the expense, they will be more inclined to shoulder the expenses of coordination. Second, certain qualities of the asset, clients, and establishments encompassing a CPR lead to lower exchange costs in making and actualizing administration plans. The expenses are connected with data (instability), arranging, and observing.

Aim of Study

The main aim of this study is to identify provision of the “Lake Water” as a common pool resource production methods for the common pool resource and assessment of the Provision and Production of the common pool resource being provided by the City Council of Costa Mesa. Based on our learnings from Ostrom Chapter 7 and other sources, we selected lake water as common pool resource based on applications of excludability that alludes to both the expense to avoid customers and the expense of barring consumers. It is conceivable to encase a water source inside a wall, for an ostensible sum, yet in the event if that water source is the main hotspot for drinking water, that prohibition brings about death. Since water is subtractable, and the expense of barring consumers is high, water is a common pool resource.
There is an expanding comprehension that common pool resources are key components in supporting the employments of a large number of families in emerging nations. In any case, most common pool resources share with public goods the trouble of creating physical or institutional method for excluding beneficiaries and the items or resource units from common pool resources offer with private goods the trait that one individual's utilization subtracts from the amount accessible to others. Because of these attributes, common pool resources are conceivably subject to issues of clogging, over-abuse, consumption or corruption. Thus, unless reaping or utilization cut-off are devised and implemented, it is scarcely conceivable to represent and deal with these resources among client aggregates in a sustainable way. An expansive test in the administration of common pool resources is the manner by which to co-ordinate partners to utilize, oversee and administer the common pool resources as populace develops to avert over-misuse. ( (Ostrom, 1990) (Hardin, 1968)). As an aftereffect of natural changes, populace weight, and the consequent interest for more resources to manage rustic vocations, Common Pool Resources are currently under risk in California in general and particularly in Costa Mesa Local city. Especially supportable resource administration and governance in the lake of South Coast.
Watershed confronts serious difficulties. The common resources in the watershed area are quickly debasing, not just debilitating wage surges of nearby clients (like fishers) however also affecting the district's biological community. Late improvements in the locale around the lake, a quickly developing town on the southern shores of the lake, change of wetlands into croplands coupled with genuine area debasement, deforestation at the upper stream of the watershed has cast doubt on the manageability of the utilization estimation of the lake (ZAWDIE, 2001)

Research Target

The particular targets of this research study will be to:
1.      Review existing writing with the end goal of producing a structure to use for assessing the institutional environment and exchange costs for the situation study group.
2.      Explore and depict foundations that exist among lake management and water usage management in Costa Mesa City.
3.      Determine if these organizations make high exchange costs that outcome in hindrances or will lower exchange costs that outcome in opportunities for realizing the objectives of Costa Mesa's water use program.
4.      To reach inferences taking into account the discoveries about what changes may diminish exchange costs in zones where they are high to profit the project.

Outline for research project

Our research project will start with introduction of common pool resources including occurrence of a specific common pool resource in Costa Mesa City of California. The chosen common pool resource for this research project is “Lake Water” that has been recognized as rivalrous and uneasily-excludable according to applications mentioned in Ostrom Chapter 7.
After introducing common pool resource and its occurrence in Costa Mesa city, we will proceed further for literature review of previous researches on same issue, empirical and hypothetical structures will be defined in this section for identifying similar application and theories by various authors. A hypothetical structure will comprise of ideas, definitions and reference to significant academic writing, existing hypothesis that is utilized for a common pool resource studies under the governance of other governments. The hypothetical system will exhibit a comprehension of hypotheses and ideas that are significant to the theme of a research related to common pool resources and we will also identify with the more extensive zones of learning that should be considered in this area of research.
Literature review will be proceeded by methodology section of research project, where we will define our approaches to research, structure of research, method of data collection etc. This section will provide our reader with the information about our data collection strategies in about “Lake Water” as common pool resource in Costa Mesa City. The methodology will portray the wide philosophical supporting to our chosen research techniques, including whether we are utilizing qualitative or quantitative methods, or a mixture of both, and why. On the basis of nature of our topic, we want to conduct this study using qualitative data as it is performance based area of research and using qualitative data will provide us with more productive results than that of quantitative data.
Finally we will analyse the data and our conclusion will be based upon results of analysis of such data. The conclusion will provide our reader with complete summary of our research study and reader will be able to understand the performance or governance of Development services department of Costa Mesa City Council utilizing “Lake Water” as a common pool resource. This research study will be specifically more important for other government’s departments and representatives to understand how they can utilize a common pool resource, how “Lake Water” is considered as common pool resource and what are advantages or disadvantages of utilizing common pool resource.


Agrawal, A. (2001). Common Property Institutions and Sustainable Governance of Resources. World Development29(10), 1649-1672.
Bromley, D. (1992). The Commons, Property, and Common-Property Regimes. In Making theCommons Work: Theory, Practice, and Policy. ed. Daniel W. Bromley. San Francisco: ICS Press.
Costa Mesa Gov. Official. (2015). Costa Mesa City Hall. Retrieved 03 25, 2015, from
Costa Mesa Govt. Official. (2015). Retrieved 03 25, 2015, from
Gardner, R. E. (1990). The Nature of Common-Pool Resource Problems. Rationality and Society2(3), 335-358.
Hardin, G. (1968). The tragedy of the commons. Science162, 1243-1248.
Li, T. (1996). Images of community: dis-course and strategy in property relations. Dev. Change27(3), 501–27.
Oakerson, R. J. (1992). Analyzing the Commons: A Framework. In Making the Commons Work:Theory, Practice, and Policy. ed. Daniel W. Bromley. SanFrancisco: ICS Press.
Olson, M. (1971). The Logic of Collective Action. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard Press.
Ostrom and Gardner. (1993). Coping with Asymmetries in the Commons: Self-GoverningIrrigation Systems can work. Journal of Economic Perspectives7(4), 93-112.
Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the Commons: The evolution of institutions for collective action. UK: Cambridge University Press.
Runge, C. F. (1981). Common Property Externalities: Isolation, Assurance, and Resource Depletion in a Traditional Grazing Context. American Journal ofAgricultural Economics63, 595-606.
Schmid, A. A. (2004). Conflict and Cooperation: Institutional and Behavioral Economics. Oxford, UK:Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
ZAWDIE, B. T. (2001). Development Initiatives and Challengesfor Sustainable Resource Management and Livelihood in the Lake Tana Region of NorthernEthiopia. Proceedings of the Wetland Awareness . Creation and Activity Identification.


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