Adaptive Governance for Carbon Management: The Case of the Dark Peak in the Peak District National Park

  • Ioanna Tantanasi

Student thesis: Unknown


The world is facing a 'perfect storm' of socio-ecological crises: adverse climate change, natural resource depletion, water conflict, to name but a few. With many of these future pressures looming, it is essential to learn how to shift from traditional command-and-control strategies to more adaptive ones. Adaptive governance is an approach from institutional theory that combines ecological systems theory, natural resource management and the study of self-governing institutions to manage common pool resources. The Dark Peak of the Peak District National Park is one of the UK's largest carbon stores, fraught with a history of frequent change in policies and land management activities, conflicting knowledges and interests, convoluted property rights regimes, and carbon emissions. The recent development of a carbon agenda made it an excellent example to explore how this restructures the Dark Peak social network, how its key stakeholders adopt and respond to it, and finally how an adaptive framework can facilitate in mitigating carbon emissions. This thesis offers the first analysis of the Dark Peak's social network managing for a carbon agenda, and also provides a critical reflection on the possibilities and limitations of using an adaptive framework in this particular context. This has been achieved by combining social network analysis, with stakeholder mapping, observation, and semi-structured interviews to identify the key stakeholders steering the Dark Peak's carbon agenda.
Date of Award1 Aug 2016
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorJames Evans (Supervisor) & Clive Agnew (Supervisor)


  • carbon agenda, adaptive governance and management, stakeholder engagement, Peak District

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