From the Himalayas to Mexico to New England communities past and present have served as stewards of the forests, fisheries and water resources upon which they depend for their livelihoods. This course will explore how communities retain, regain or form new governance structures for managing critical natural resources. We will begin by introducing a theoretical basis for institutional arrangements for community management. Thereafter, we will reflect on questions such as: What makes community? What role do ethnicity, gender and state play in community management? What are the local heterogeneities in community structures? Throughout the course, we will consider a variety of community management regimes and their broader institutional settings, including the history of community forest management in New England, India’s Joint Implementation program and Mexico’s government-supported community timber enterprises; fisheries management in Japan and Chile and by First Nations in British Columbia; and acequias in the American southwest. We will assess whether cases achieve ecological integrity, poverty alleviation and equitable distribution. Finally, the course will analyze U.S. policies and international programs that support or inhibit community management.