From product to place - Spatializing governance in a commodified landscape

C.J. van Oosten*, Moira Moeliono, K.F. Wiersum

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This article analyzes the potential for landscape governance in large-scale commodity landscapes in Indonesia.
It conceptualizes landscape governance as the spatialization of governance, which entails the interplay between natural-spatial conditions of place, public-private actor constellations, and policy responses. The article presents the case of a commodified oil palm landscape in West Kalimantan, where a potentially new type of landscape
governance is emerging out of the experimental activities of an ecologically responsible commercial enterprise. It describes the development of a multifunctional concession
as a process of productive bricolage involving the creative combination of different land uses within a single productive space. It also describes how such a multifunctional
concession does not fit into existing policies, which are sectorally defined and embedded in sticky institutional frames. The formation of new public–private institutional
arrangements needed for the development of multifunctional concessions is a difficult process, as it requires an alignment of contrasting discourses and an integration of
sectorally-defined policy frames. If successful, it might facilitate the transition from multifunctional concessions to multifunctional landscapes. Such a fundamental change in
land use and production relations however requires intensive stakeholder engagement and policy dialog. Indonesia’s continuous decentralization process offers opportunities
for this, as it increasingly provides institutional space at the landscape level, for public and private actors to explore common concerns, and craft public–private arrangements specific to the landscape.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-169
JournalEnvironmental Management
Issue number1
Early online date24 May 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2018


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