This chapter argues that the interpretation of legal transfers occurring in transnational spaces, often in politically charged contexts of North-South relations, is illuminated by a conflict-centred approach that draws on disputing literature to combine a dynamic understanding of both rights and regulation. Especially (but not only) in the politically charged contexts of North-South relations that characterise ‘law and development’ scenarios, technocratic and populist governance dynamics can and often do collide, creating significant political turbulence and catalyzing intractable disputes. The approach outlined here avoids the tendency of existing literature to explore either the social activist dynamics or the technocratic regulatory dynamics, and instead brings them together in one analysis. It also has considerable advantages for linking micro-level and macro-level aspects of law and development more broadly. The chapter illustrates this with a case study on conflicts around access to water in Bolivia in the late 1990s and early 2000s. As the case study shows, micro-level policy trajectories often reflect the tensions between technocracy and populism in ways that fragment, complicate and undermine coherent governance strategies. The overall approach foregrounds complexity, conflict, the significance of non-state actors and the importance of agency in the developing world.
|Translated title of the contribution||Rights and Regulation as a Framework for Exploring Reverse Legal Transfers: Hegemony and Counter-Hegemony in the Bolivian Water Sector|
|Title of host publication||Law and Development and the Global Discourses of Legal Transfer|
|Editors||John Gillespie, Pip Nicholson|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|