With and beyond the state - co-production as a route to political influence, power and transformation for grassroots organizations

2008, Mitlin D., Environment and Urbanization. 20 (2)

This paper reviews the use of co-production – with state and citizensworking together – as a grassroots strategy to secure political infl uence and accessresources and services. To date, the literature on social movements has concentratedon more explicitly political strategies used by such movements to contest forpower and infl uence. Co-production, when considered, is viewed as a strategy usedby citizens and the state to extend access to basic services with relatively littleconsideration given to its wider political ramifi cations. However, co-productionis used increasingly by grassroots organizations and federations as part of anexplicit political strategy. This paper examines the use of co-productive strategiesby citizen groups and social movement organizations to enable individualmembers and their associations to secure effective relations with state institutionsthat address both immediate basic needs and enable them to negotiate for greaterbenefits.

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