What are you looking for?

Moritz, Mark

Moritz, Mark


Mark Moritz, born in Delft, the Netherlands, in 1969. Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and the Environmental Science Graduate Program (ESGP) at The Ohio State University.

Fellow (1 September 2014 – 30 June 2015)

Emergence of the Commons: How Pastoralists Avoid a Tragedy of the Commons in West Africa

Research Question

How do mobile pastoralists manage open access to common-pool grazing resources without overgrazing the range?

Project Description

I am writing a book that is based on a longitudinal study of mobile pastoralists in the Logone floodplain, Cameroon where open access to common-pool grazing resources does not lead to a tragedy of the commons. I have argued that this pastoral system is best conceptualized as a complex adaptive system, in which a combination of individual decision-making and coordination of movements leads to an ideal free distribution of mobile pastoralists in which the distribution of animals matches that of grazing resources. The book will be published in the Princeton Studies in Complexity series and will outline conceptual and methodological approaches in the study of complex social-ecological systems.

Selected Publications

1) Moritz, Mark, Ian M. Hamilton, Yu-Jen Chen, Paul Scholte. 2014. Mobile pastoralists in the Logone Floodplain distribute themselves in an Ideal Free Distribution. Current Anthropology. 55(1):115-122.

2) Moritz, Mark, Paul Scholte, Ian M. Hamilton and Saïdou Kari. 2013. Open Access, Open Systems: Pastoral Management of Common-Pool Resources in the Chad Basin. Human Ecology. 41(3):351–365.

3) Moritz, Mark. 2012. Pastoral Intensification in West Africa: Implications for Sustainability. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute. 18(2):418-438.

Personal page