Embargo Period


Degree Name

MA in Sustainable Development

First Advisor

Rachel Slocum

Second Advisor

Udi Butler


This paper examines the origins, history and social impact of the iTaukei (E-tow-kay) Administration in Fiji, which is an autonomous system of indigenous dual-power within the government of Fiji. It traces the history, social implications, and current status of the iTaukei Administration, focusing on (1) to what extend this administration has frustrated the advances of liberalism in the form of both nation-state and capitalism, and (2) if there is an alternative to the dichotomy of cultural, political, and economic domination of chiefly elites versus that of the global neoliberal hegemony. In this analysis, the origins of developmental discourse is examined, looking at the colonial government and then chiefly and political elites as creators and producers of this discourse. Using Social Ecology as a methodology, this paper peels apart the manifold of conflict that surrounds this administration, consisting of interpenetrating ethnic, class, economic, and hierarchical conflict. The administration was designed to impede capitalist expansion in Fiji, yet as time went on the colonial government desired further profit, leading to the creation of development discourse directed at increasing ‘individualism' amongst the iTaukei people. In parallel to this there has been a continuous call for the drawdown of dual-power encapsulated in the iTaukei Administration. The tension between creators of this discourse—British colonialists, iTaukei chiefly and political elite,—and the iTaukei people is laid out through a history of the iTaukei Administration. Through this examination, the importance of non-state directly democratic institutions, such as the localized aspect of the iTaukei Administration, create and inherent weakness in the State, and allow for the possibility of cultural autonomy that can be inclusive, as opposed to parochial. It also reveals the paramount importance of land in struggles to disrupt Capital, and the importance of preserving or creating communal land control.


Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration