It is a well-known feature of common property resources that they may be especially useful for the poor who may need them as a fall-back option when their regular main income source falls short of subsistence needs, or as a regular complementary income. Whether the stock of natural resources managed under common property is maintained or decreases over time due to overexploitation or depletion is therefore a critical issue in the perspective of any long-term poverty-reduction strategy. Moreover, although these resources may serve a vital function for the poor, the rate of their utilization by the rich villagers may still exceed that of the poor. In such circumstances, consumption by the rich may displace consumption by the poor, instantaneously or over time. These issues are explored empirically using first-hand data collected by CRED's members in Nepal and India (state of Himachal Pradesh).
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