Livelihood Practices within Hybrid Governance: Local Negotiations to the Threat of Land Scarcity in Expanding Urban Areas of Bukavu

In areas that lack an effective state governance is often effected through a hybridity of (partial) institutions. Study of hybrid governance often overlooks the strategies of the people whose conduct produces those partial institutions. This PhD research uses governmentality to study hybrid political order-ing: the broad dynamic, complex process of interactively evolving forms of rule in which institutions delimit individual conduct that, reciprocally, shapes the institutions.

The entry point of this research is the governance of land through the interaction of livelihood practices and governance institutions in the city of Bukavu in eastern DRC. Focusing on how the issue of land access is governed by a multiplicity of actors, and tracing those patterns of governance back to their possible mutually contesting institutional fields, will expand the discussion of scholars working with hybrid political ordering and deepen the understanding of interveners touching upon governance issues.

The analysis proposed here will study individual practices, recognized as livelihood strategies, their interaction with a variety of governance strategies, and the resulting contradictions as they play out through myriad encounters and negotiations. This study seeks to answer the following question:

How do livelihood practices of urban dwellers regarding access to and control over land and housing interact with hybrid governance institutions in peri-urban Bukavu? And how, if at all, do these micro level practices influence hybrid governance arrangements?