Conflict and Sustainability in a Changing Environment

Conflict and Sustainability in a Changing Environment

Through the Eyes of Communities

By Gwendolyn Smith & Elena P. Bastidas

‘Conflict and Sustainability in a Changing Environment’ presents the idea that local communities can develop sustainably under changing environmental conditions when the discrepancy are sufficiently addressed between community views and the views of organizations responsible for implementing development initiatives. It introduces a theoretical framework and practical tools for analyzing such views.

Hardback, 208 Pages

ISBN:9781783086078

January 2017

£70.00, $115.00

  • About This Book
  • Reviews
  • Author Information
  • Series
  • Table of Contents
  • Links

About This Book

Local communities are now, more than ever before, experiencing environmental change. These changes draw attention to the discrepancy and conflict between their own views and the views of the initiators of development, such as governments and multilateral organizations. The main thesis of the book unfolds around the idea that under changing environmental conditions, sustainable development can only be achieved when communities can overcome the view conflict and are free to set their own goals.

Using a case study of the Trio indigenous peoples in Suriname, the book presents an “inside” view of a community on the path towards sustainable development when facing climate change. It introduces a new framework, called VIEW, to comprehensively analyze the views of the Trio community when progressing through the different stages of development. The community apparently goes through a process of judging climate change against their own values, followed by creating a meaning about it and ultimately making a decision on how to act.

This book will take the reader beyond examining a few examples from the field. It discusses the position of a researcher in community development and presents several tools and indicators to effectively work with communities. The book lays out a set of principles for researchers to engage in ethical, effective and valid research. Only with the right mindset, a researcher can look through the eyes of the community in a respectable manner and implement a truly bottom-up approach in sustainable development.

Reviews

"“This accessible volume offers practical tools to help outsiders who work with indigenous communities to understand how these people’s history, values and aspirations for the future shape their view of climate change, and illustrates how conflict management approaches can engage indigenous and scientific knowledge to address climate change challenges.”
—Marianne Schmink, Professor Emerita and Distinguished Teaching Scholar, University of Florida, USA "

“It has been quite some time since I read a book that so easily integrated the art and science of development work into a new and coherent methodology and framework. Smith and Bastidas do what few have managed to do––that is, to jump the proverbial fence and examine the views and values of an indigenous group of people and make that the starting point of a persuasive, healthy and successful development project.”
Brian Polkinghorn, Distinguished Professor, Department of Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution, and Executive Director, Bosserman Center for Conflict Resolution, Salisbury University, USA

Author Information

Gwendolyn Smith, executive director of the NGO Perspectives of Freedom Foundation, USA, is a scholar and practitioner in the nexus of conflict, environment and development in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Elena P. Bastidas, associate professor at the Department of Conflict Resolution Studies, College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, Nova Southeastern University, USA, is a development practitioner in conflict analysis and resolution in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Series

Anthem Ecosystem Services and Restoration Series

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations; Preface; Acknowledgments; 1. Introduction: Local Communities and Sustainable Development; 2. Researching Views in Community Development; 3. New Framework for Researching Views in Community Development; 4. Social Polygraphy: An Approach to Obtaining Information through Mutual Learning; 5. Exploring the Underlying Values; 6. Making Sense of the World; 7. Sustainable Decisions; 8. Working with Community Views; References; Index.

Links

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