A REVIEW OF CONCEPTS AND ISSUES
Encroachment of forest lands for cultivation occupies a central position in the debate on tropical deforestation. The paper attempts to analyse various concepts and issues involved in swidden. These include various ecological, economic and institutional aspects. In ecological issues, we have attempted to see the deforestation, biodiversity and soil erosion problems. Economic issues primarily deal with factor use, production and output and energy efficiency related to swidden vis-à-vis other forms of land use. The institutional aspects see the property right structure and social norms that guide the swiddening society and the state policy that has affected the life style of these people. One of the important issues the paper poses that, the consequences of failure to anticipate the ecological and social facets of land use changes, may lead to short-term economic gains, but sustainability of such changes in the long-run is questionable.
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