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IHDP

UPDATE

N E W S L E T T E R O F T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L H U M A N D I M E N S I O N S P R O G R A M M E O N G LO B A L E N V I R O N M E N TA L C H A N G E

01/2006

ISSN 1727-155X

THE 6 th OPEN MEETING – THE WORLD’S LARGEST SOCIAL SCIENCE EVENT ON GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE

OPEN MEETING 2005 SPECIAL C

O N T E N T S

1 The World’s Largest Social Science

Event on Global Environmental Change | U. Löw

B Y U LA L ÖW

10 Resilience, Vulnerability and Adap-

tation | M. Janssen, E. Ostrom 12 Non-State Authority and Legitimacy

in Global Environmental Governance | F. Biermann 15 Progress in Industrial Transforma-

tion | A. Wieczorek, F. Berkhout 17 Talk for a Change: Communication

in Support of Societal Responses to Climate Change | S. Moser, P. Luganda 21 Global Environmental Change, Gen-

der and Human Security | L. Bizikova, S. Bhadwal 23 The Complex Dynamics of TransPhoto by Ula Löw

boundary Water Management | A. Lovecraft 25 “Handing Over” – From LUCC to GLP |

G. Laumann ➤ The beautiful rococo building of the Bonn University was the venue for the 6 Open Meeting of the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Research Community. With its title reflecting the global situation, “International Security, Globalization and Global Environmental Change”, the meeting took place from 9 to 13 October 2005 in Bonn, Germany. The conference was a great success, with more than 1,000 participants attending from over 85 countries. This represents a nearly three-fold increase from the previous Open Meeting in Montreal and makes it the world’s largest social science event on global environmental change to date. The 5-day event consisted of four plenary sessions and nearly 130 parallel sessions. While the official opening featured high-level keynote speakers from the policy arena, the daily morning plenaries included top researchers with presentations and discussions on provocative and thought-provoking topics. These plenary sessions addressed topics such as the policy relevance of human dimensions research, how to ground this research in present global realities, the weaknesses and benefits of interdisciplinary research, and a stock-taking of the human dimensions research to date. th

26 The Pre-Open Meeting Training

Seminars 28 UNU-EHS Expert Working Group

Meeting on Measuring Vulnerability 29 IHDP National Committee Science at

the 6th Open Meeting | D. MeyerWefering 32

IHDP National Committees Meet in Bonn | D. Meyer-Wefering

32 Transparency and Fairness are Crucial | Interview with Barbara Göbel 34 In Brief 35 New Books

continued on page 2

36 Calendar

W W W. I H D P. O R G I H D P U p d a t e i s p u b l i s h e d b y t h e I n t e r n a t i o n a l H u m a n D i m e n s i o n s P ro g r a m m e o n G l o b a l E n v i ro m e n t a l C h a n g e ( I H D P ) , Wa l t e r - F l e x - S t r. 3 , 5 3 1 1 3 B o n n , G e r m a n y, V. i . S . d. P. : U l a L ö w


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T H E CO N F E R E N C E : A G LO B A L P L AT F O R M

NOTE FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR “Panta rei – Everything changes!” This well-known phrase by the ancient Greek philosopher Heraklitos serves as a conceptual backdrop to acknowledging that change in anything is a normal phenomenon. Global environmental change, however, must be understood as a synonym for rapidly deteriorating resources, livelihoods and biophysical parameters. Whereas especially the natural sciences have largely contributed to the understanding of both causes and effects of these phenomena, IHDP particularly aims to foster their specific human, societal and economic perspectives. Global perspectives on the environment have gradually evolved since the adoption of the UN Charter in 1945 and notable milestones such as the 1968 Brundtland Commission. Scientists and politicians alike are now paying more attention to societal concerns such as economic, social and human development, poverty reduction, health, water and sanitation, food security, national security and statehood protection as well as human security. Still, there is a need to attract policy-makers’ attention to the impressive range of IHDP research and findings from the programme’s first decade – which I humbly consider “phase one” of IHDP. We have consolidated a world-wide inter-disciplinary network of outstanding scientists – bringing about a vast portfolio of issues and results – and must now increase mutual dialogue with decision makers. Their interests and needs should inspire our research in a truly cross-cutting, inter-sectoral and inter-disciplinary way. Often produced in developed countries, many global environmental threats have significant impacts on developing ones: Prominent are the loss of biodiversity, deforestation and desertification, but we cannot overlook others such as the marginalization of rural areas, economic disaster and poverty, migration, urbanization, and social conflict. As there is a clear link between sustainable development, environmental change, and globalization, IHDP wishes to pay particular attention to developing countries, incorporate their science and research, involve more researchers in our networks, and promote their specific concerns while moving towards embracing worldwide policy making entities. Finally, I would like to mention the 6th Open Meeting, organized by IHDP together with several strategic partners in October 2005 in Bonn. 1,000 participants from 85 countries gathered to discuss issues of globalization and international security. Ambitious fundraising helped to enable a large turnout from younger and developing country researchers. A three-fold increase in participants over the past Open Meeting in Montreal in 2003, as well as the active involvement of high-level policy makers, keynote speakers and researchers in the global change field, confirmed the successful work and consolidation of IHDP science over its first 10 years. I am happy to be coming on board at this exciting time and look forward to the future development and next stage of IHDP. Dr. Andreas Rechkemmer Executive Director

2 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

THEMES OF THE 6 th OPEN MEETING PARALLEL SESSIONS Theme 1: Theme 2: Theme 3: Theme 4: Theme 5: Theme 6: Theme 7: Theme 8: Theme 9: Theme 10: Theme 11: Theme 12: Theme 13: Theme 14:

Adaptive Management and Resilience Coastal Zones, Human Use of Oceans Environmental History Global Environmental Change and Human Security Globalization and Global Environmental Change Human Dimensions of Carbon and Water Management, Food and Health Industrial Transformation Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Land-Use and Land-Cover Change Methods in Human-Environment Studies Regional Approaches to Human-Environment Studies Science-Policy Interface in Global Environmental Change Sustainable Development Urbanization.

For all abstracts of the parallel sessions as well as all paper abstracts within sessions, please see http://openmeeting.homelinux.org/abstract_listing.asp

The 128 parallel sessions, chosen in a highly competitive and two-tiered selection process, were centred around different areas of human dimensions research. In the exhibition hall, poster presentations were organized around the same 14 themes, and up-and-coming researchers were given a chance to showcase their posters several times during the conference. In addition to this, a number of roundtables and special side events took place, such as the IHDP core science projects’ reception, the National Committees meeting or the seminars of the United Nations University’s Institute for Environment and Human Security (see reports in this UPDATE). Placing the 6th Open Meeting back-to-back with a series of training seminars was an innovative way to focus on capacity building and to actively involve as well as specially prepare 60 young researchers to take part and present their research at the ensuing large international conference. Here, established and newly rising researchers from more than 35 different countries truly had the opportunity to mix during one of the numerous parallel sessions, or one of the many social activities designed expressly for the purpose of further communication and discussion of ideas in a more informal setting. A report on the training seminars can be found in this issue of UPDATE. At lunchtime but also in the evenings, the conference participants benefited from the beautifully and centrally located venue, and from a very mild and sunny October. The attractive city centre of Bonn, the beautiful park outside of the university main building, and the river Rhine flowing by beneath old cannons and busy beer gardens where university students meet – all of this added to the already very positive atmos-


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OPENING AND THE MORNING PLENARY SESSIONS

phere throughout the Open Meeting. One of the highlights among the social events was a boat trip along the Rhine river towards the Loreley with evening dinner and dance. The boat that was chartered for this event, the “MS Wappen von Köln”, is the biggest tourist boat in the area – it can seat up to 1,000 people on board. The organization and implementation of the Open Meeting has been a major task for the IHDP Secretariat under the leadership of its Open Meeting Coordinator, Lis Mullin. About 60 student volunteers also helped to check badges and guard electronic equipment, as well as with numerous other tasks throughout the conference. Without their help, the conference would have been impossible to realize, particularly considering the great number of people that had enlisted. THE OFFICIAL OPENING

The 6th Open Meeting began with a high-level opening ceremony on Sunday evening, October 9th. After a welcoming note by Barbara Göbel, the outgoing Executive Director of IHDP, the second speaker to address the audience was Hans van Ginkel, Director of the United Nations University in Tokyo. He stressed the importance of human security as a political concept and research issue. The United Nations Environment Programme´s (UNEP) Executive Director Klaus Töpfer talked about the three pillars – global environmental change, globalization and social security. He summarized all the alarming facts of GEC – climate change, the rapid decrease of nature capital, the fast changes in land-use and the rise of desertification, as well as rapid urbanization – and stated that we are losing diversity and stability. He then went on to talk about globalization, global markets, economies of scale and the effort to decrease poverty, as well as about transport, tourism and global information. Töpfer stressed the link between environment and poverty and stated that ecosystems are the basics for fighting poverty. He concluded that there cannot be social stability if there is loss of diversity, and while mono-structured regions may boom for a while, they are at a high risk of de-stabilization. Liu Yanhua, the Chinese Vice-Minister of Science and Technology talked about the history of IHDP and remembered the first Open Meeting in Tokyo in 1998, a small meeting where people were arguing about the focus of IHDP. Since then, the Open Meeting has evolved into a big conference, and the idea of the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Research has been widely accepted. He then proceeded to lay out the development of human dimensions research in China, pointing to some of the major achievements of Chinese research in the global change area, namely research on: 1) the regional synthesis of the Monsoon Area; 2) historical/past global environmental change; 3) water resources and cycles; 4) land-use and land-cover change, and 5) the carbon cycle. Liu went on to mention the Chinese National Committees of IHDP and its global partner programmes, as well as the upcoming IHDP regional conference in Beijing, to take place in fall 2006. As important goals for GEC research in China, he listed, among others, the opening of Chinese scientists to research questions of global scale, their participation in international collaboration, the development of cross-project research, and the building up of a national coordination sys-

tem for GEC research. He concluded by stating that human dimensions have to be strengthened within Chinese GEC research, and also become more development-oriented. Like Klaus Töpfer before him, Alexander Schink, Secretary of the State North-Rhine Westphalia for the Environment, pointed out that since Bonn is the German city of international agencies and development organizations, it is a well befitting location for a conference on global environmental change issues. He then presented the German state North-Rhine Westphalia, one of the more densely populated areas in the world with a large industrial agglomeration, and still high carbon emissions (300 million tons per year). He gave a summary of the environmental planning for the state, highlighting the importance of renewable energies and the gentle use of open space. Finally, Mathias Winiger, the president of the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhems-Universität – (the University of Bonn) – welcomed the international audience, and pointed towards current global change events, namely the hurricanes in North and Central America. He said that environmental issues have become a main focus in research and technology, also within the university. Bonn has become a big “think-tank” on global change, with not only the university institutes such as the Centre for Development Research and the IHDP but also the UNU and other environmental as well as development research organizations having their main offices here. After these keynote speeches, an official champagne reception took place at the historic Bonn town hall with a welcoming speech by Bonn’s mayor Peter Finger. THE MORNING PLENARY SESSIONS

It was notable that almost all high-level speakers at the morning plenary sessions called for a fundamental change in how global change research is viewed and done. In order to better understand complex systems of interaction and in order to influence policy decisions in a manner that leads to more sustainability, the challenge for researchers is to include ethical values and different viewpoints as well as to engage in eye-level dialogue with society – “engaged research” – while keeping the scientific standards high. MONDAY PLENARY

Monday’s opening plenary focused on “Globalization, and International Security: Grounding Human Dimensions Research in Present Global Realities”. Session moderator Diana Liverman, from the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford, opened this plenary session by presenting the first speaker, Satish Kumar, editor of Resurgence Magazine. He is the founder of a number of small, ecologically-oriented schools, and the author of several books. Satish Kumar gave an all-encompassing view of the world, and in particular, nature. He said that the visible world of science – mind and ratio – should also leave space for the “invisible world”, namely intuition, experience, insight and wisdom. He pointed out that most people – also many of the GEC research community present – are not close to nature anymore, and that they are not “makers”, for example, by growing their own vegetables or baking their own bread. He criticized our consumer, petroleum-driven society in which our food, clothes IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 3


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etc. are based on globalized petroleum principles. He challenged the idea of “development” and called the West, a society largely based on the above-mentioned unsustainable principles, “underdeveloped”. Hallidor Thorgeirsson from the United Nations Framework Convention to Combat Climate Change, gave a UN policy-oriented overview on global environmental change. He talked about the discrepancy of individual choices as opposed to collective choices and noted that the future implications of climate change on human security will be significant. He said that we have not lost the opportunity to turn this around, and that the gravity of scientific evidence is slowly sinking in – it’s when the findings of science start to affect people’s lives that these findings become relevant to policy. He named the Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the Kyoto Protocol as the two primary actions of international policy makers as a response to climate change. He mentioned that certain key people and companies in the private sector are responding to climate change, also on their own initiative. He also called the IPCC process successful, in particular with regard to the dedication of the scientists, as well as with regard to the wisdom of policy makers in resisting the temptation to manipulate or exploit the process for short-term power policy goals. With regard to the earth’s future, Thorgeirsson said that true leaders have to be optimistic, as optimists have to explain why they are optimistic, and act on this behalf. Pessimism, to him, is “the safe way out”. He underlined that there has to be a balance between consuming and making, and criticized our western double standards with regard to China’s and India’s booming societies – we have to change first in the West. While the US government is still opposed to the Kyoto Protocol, and also to what scientists say about climate change, there are creative options going on “underneath” the official Kyoto Protocol with cities and local governments working in partnerships towards reducing their emissions. TUESDAY PLENARY

Tuesday’s plenary session presented IHDP’s core science and outcomes, to the theme of “Taking Stock: Contributions of IHDP to Human Dimensions Research”. IHDP’s scientific Chair, Coleen Vogel from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, gave a welcome speech and talked about the challenges within the human dimensions of global environmental change research. She highlighted the importance of multiple interactive driving forces throughout the human dimensions on GEC research and presented a model on the climate change-development syndrome. Further models looked at vulnerability, and its double structures of exposure and coping. Consequently, Vogel highlighted social learning/knowledge as a crucial crosscutting issue of IHDP research. Besides the ongoing IHDP research on human-environment systems, a vision for IHDP could be an improved understanding of the science/society/action interface. Currently, there is still a disconnection between science and the user community. We need institutional changes and improved dialogue to bridge this disconnect. And we have to explore ways of how to get from fundamental research to applied research and back. 4 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

The first core science project to present its work was the Land-Use and Land-Cover Change project. LUCC-chair Eric Lambin (University of Louvain, Belgium) presented some global historical data on changes in cropland, forest cover, grasslands etc. Currently, there are hundreds of case studies worldwide, as well as comparative studies and meta-analyses of the causes of forest-cover change, dryland degradation and agricultural intensification. Proximate causes for this are infrastructure extension, agricultural expansion, wood extraction and others as, the underlying causes being demographic, economic, technological, policy & institutional as well as cultural factors. He talked about regional pathways of land-use change (land-use history, interactions between agents, management decisions and policies, organization at different scales, learning and adaptation by actors), and showed different models (spatial statistical, system-dynamic, economic, multi-agent simulations) and scenarios of how land-use change will affect land cover in the next 50 to 100 years. The challenges for the integration of natural and social science approaches are data (“linking people to pixels”), models (the dynamic coupling of land-use cover change and biophysical models), and theory (how can theories from multiple disciplines be integrated toward an overarching theory of complex adaptive systems?). After 10 years of successful research, LUCC has come to its termination, and an official hand-over ceremony to the new core science project LAND (GLP) that will take up many of LUCC’s core findings and research questions has taken place at the Open Meeting (see this UPDATE for a brief report). Oran Young (University of California at Santa Barbara), chair of the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (IDGEC) core project of IHDP, first presented an overview on the project. IDGEC focuses on institutions as clusters of rights, rules, and decision-making procedures, rooted in the “new institutionalism”, occurring at all levels of social organization, and with an emphasis on environmental and resource regimes. Its three principal research foci are: 1) Causality – what role do institutions play in causing and confronting global environmental change? 2) Performance – why are some individual responses to global environmental change more successful than others? 3) Design – what are the prospects for (re-)designing institutions to confront global environmental change? Within each of the research foci, IDGEC looks particularly closely ate the analytic themes of institutional fit, interplay, and scale. Governance is the IDGEC-specific crosscutting issue to be explored together with other IHDP core and joint projects. Young went on to present some sample findings of IDGEC. In decision-making, there should be reliance on consensus rules while at the same time avoiding the problem of the least ambitious program. There is a need to move beyond enforcement and management models, and also a need to recognize interplay and embrace multi-level arrangements. IDGEC is currently in a synthesis process, distilling the project’s principal research contributions, making it available to a wider public and identifying policy relevance, as well as facilitating policy application of its work. It will also outline the next phase of research for the project. This synthesis process will culminate in a Synthesis Conference to be held in December 2006 in Bali,


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Photo by Ula Löw

Indonesia. The second Call for Proposals can be found in this UPDATE. Frans Berkhout (IVM, University of Amsterdam), the chair of IHDP’s core science project Industrial Transformation (IT) presented the goal and objectives of his project. The goal of IT is to explore pathways towards decoupling of economic growth from the related degradation of the environment. The project aims to understand the societal mechanisms and human driving forces that could facilitate a transformation of the industrial system towards sustainability, and it seeks to integrate and stimulate cooperation among international and interdisciplinary scientists. Key messages that can be distilled from IT research are that change in socio-technical systems is a long-term and multilevel process full of uncertainty, that innovation of new technologies in niches are important but so are changes at the societal level, and that transforming sociotechnical systems requires processes of path-creating and path-breaking. As a socio-technical system, he described the hamburger, a very refined and stable production system and technology – also through tastes that have been developed and that lock in producers (i.e. farmers) and consumers. With regard to path creation, he stated the high priced hybrid car as an example, where Toyota took a leading role, worked on this car for 20 years, and created a niche. Now, other companies follow. In terms of path breaking he asked, how mature technologies such as coal or nuclear energy can come to be replaced. The IHDP core science project Global Environmental Change and Human Security was presented by GECHS-chair Karen O’Brien (University of Oslo). She Karen O’Brien stated that environmental change is first and foremost an issue of human security – which is achieved when and where individuals and communities have the options necessary to end, mitigate or adapt to threats to their human, environmental and social rights, have the capacity and freedom to exercise these options, and actively participate in pursuing these options. Environmental change interacts with other processes of change, and biophysical, social, economic, institutional, and technological conditions create the context for vulnerability. This dynamic context influences outcomes, including conflict and cooperation. The main GECHS themes are: multiple, interacting processes of change; cooperation versus conflict; gender vulnerability; health interactions; and water and human security. With regard to Hurricane Katrina, the hurricane that had devastated New Orleans about one month earlier, it can be observed that vulnerability is not a North-South issue; but it is an issue of class, race, gender and age. Human insecurities are high in coastal and urban areas, and issues of governance are critical. A challenge and important, already ongoing task for GECHS, and for IHDP as a whole, is the work at the science-policy interface to increase response capacity and mitigate environmental change. It has to be acknowledged that environmental

changes are taking place within the dynamics of other social changes, and we have to reframe the way we think about environmental change and also the way we think about human security. Richard Aspinall from the University of Arizona is one of the transition team members of the Global Land Project (GLP), a “follow-up” project of LUCC, and gave a presentation on this new core science project of IHDP. Dynamics of landsystems, consequences of land-system changes, and integrating analysis and modelling for land sustainability are the three main components of GLP’s study of the coupled human-environmental system. Within the theme of dynamics of land-systems, the questions are: How do globalization and population changes affect regional and local land-use decisions? How do changes in land management, decisions and practices affect biogeochemistry, biodiversity, biophysical properties, and disturbance regimes of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems? And how do the atmospheric, biogeochemical and biophysical dimensions of global change affect ecosystem structure and function? The consequences of land-system changes are encompassed through questions of: What are the critical feedbacks from changes in ecosystems to the coupled Earth system? How do changes in ecosystem structure and functioning affect the delivery of ecosystem service? How are ecosystem services linked to human well-being? And, how do people respond at various scales and in different contexts to changes in ecosystem service provision? The main questions of the third theme of integrating analysis and modelling for land sustainability are: What are the critical pathways of change in land-systems? How do the vulnerability and resilience of landsystems to hazards and disturbance vary in response to changes in human and environment interactions? And, which institutions enhance decision-making and governance for the sustainability of land-systems? Hartwig Kremer, Executive Officer of the LOICZ (LandOcean Interactions in the Coastal Zone) core project, stated that coastal systems are built and interlinked like stones in a bridge – if one or a few of them crumble the whole bridge may crash. He offered a few “short stories “ on the coastal zone (“society’s edge”): The sediment short story describes the difference between pre-anthropocene and modern sediment loads, the CO2 short story asks whether climate change and human drivers will dissolve reefs and islands, and the nutrient short story is about exports from watersheds to coastal systems. For example, the Danube discharge of nitrogen into the Black Sea is closely related to fertilizer application in the Basin, and there has been a significant reduction of discharge since the beginning of the 1990s which was the starting point of the economic transition period for ex-communist Black Sea countries. The objective of LOICZ’s Black Sea project is the continued recovery of a regional sea environment. The challenges are: future European lifestyles, the roles of accession and globalization; the integration of environment in education and democratization; and the promotion of collaborative learning towards coastal governance initiatives across the countries and action to foster effective and long-term stewardship. EU membership of some countries could offer prospects but could also exacerbate divisions between EU and non-EU states. The Black Sea example IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 5


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WEDNESDAY PLENARY

Sander van der Leeuw from the Department of Anthropology at the Arizona State University led through the Wednesday morning plenary session focusing on “The Challenges of 6 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

Interdisciplinarity in Global Change Research: Epistemological and Organizational Aspects”. Ronaldo Seroa da Motta, from the Institute for Applied Economic Research in Rio de Janeiro, gave a lecture on “Economic Criteria in Environmental Benefit Valuation”, starting with the observation that consumptional choices are ranked or ordered rationally (i.e. material, cultural, spiritual, environmental etc.), with a restricted income against unlimited consumption options. EBA is a policy issue with public budget constraints as a background with two main questions to be answered: 1) Which environmental aim should we give priority, and 2) what are the criteria (ecological, social, and economic) that we should use to carry this on? While the valuation of ecological goods and services can never be the only decision indicator (as it is, i.e. sensitive to models, and as there is uncertainty on future flows of costs and benefits), there are nevertheless side advantages, and the valuation can bring about social and economic issues which ecological criteria alone cannot. It is possible to observe how costs and benefits are distributed across society. He then explained Benefit Valuation Techniques (production and demand approaches) and highlighted various aspects of the use of monetary valuation, such as prioritization, investment selection, pricing procedures, damage liability, and accounting. Crucial for any exercise of monetary valuation is a minimum set of environmental indicators. The OECD categories of pressures, state and responses could be a first step in this effort. Also, monetary valuations need uniform procedures, as these valuations are long-term and gradual processes. Valuation should be undertaken by local experts, and the dissemination of valuation exercises and their results, due to their scientific complexity and limitations, should be carefully planned to avoid misinterpretation and misuse. The critical point is that the monetary value, once it had been included, drove out the other values. The amount of resources, time, and effort to convert everything into a monetary value may well be too high to make this undertaking worthwhile. Photo by Ula Löw

reflects a general challenge for LOICZ science: how to bridge different “reality views”. Karen Seto (Stanford University), Scientific Chair of IHDP’s new core project on Urbanization and Global Environmental Change (UGEC) gave a presentation on the project and its Science Implementation Framework that had been finished earlier in the year. The main research themes of UGEC are: 1) Urban Processes that contribute to global environmental change (lifestyles and consumption patterns, urban land use and land-cover change); 2) Pathways through which global environmental change affects the urban system (human behaviour and interactions, the built environment, the resource base upon which urban systems rely); 3) Interactions and responses within the urban system (impacts, responses, livelihoods in urban communities); and 4) Consequences of interactions within urban systems on global environmental change. As part of the implementation strategy, the project will engage in thematic and regional networks, workshops and roundtables, in synthesizing activities, links with other core projects, as well as in active involvement of practitioners. Important meetings for UGEC in 2006 are the UN-Habitat meeting on cities in Cape Town, as well as the World Urban Forum in Vancouver. Apart from the plenary presentation, the UGEC Science Plan was also presented in-depth during a special session, where it was well-received and discussed. Finally, IHDP Scientific Committee member Elinor Ostrom (University of Indiana) gave a short presentation on the “Key Challenges for Human Dimensions Research”, and on the Arizona Workshop that explored state-of-the-art papers on the three concepts of vulnerability, adaptation, and resilience (an IHDP crosscutting theme), as well as background papers on scholarly networks on this crosscutting issue within human dimensions research, and on the history of these three concepts. Scientific challenges are described by the question of how globalization affects the behaviour of coupled social-ecological systems at different spatial and temporal scales, and by the question of what this means for vulnerability and resilience to specific disturbance regimes. Important implications and questions for policy are: How well do market and other indicators of “scarcity” reflect the social opportunity cost of people’s actions at different spatial and temporal scales, and how do people learn about trade-offs between private production and the social loss of ecosystem services? The challenge for IHDP research is how to determine the right temporal and spatial scales for evaluating the effects of environmental changes on resilience/vulnerability to particular disturbance regimes; to find the appropriate models and methods for this; to find the appropriate indicators of change (including threshold indicators); and to test the effectiveness of existing indicators, especially social indicators, and find out about the reasons behind their effectiveness or ineffectiveness. Ostrom announced the “Arizona Workshop” session that was to take place that same day. A session summary is included in this issue of UPDATE.

John Robinson from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver gave a presentation “On John Robinson Being Undisciplined: Some Transgressions and Intersections in Academia and Beyond”. He started with the language games of inter- and trans-disciplinarity (multi-, cross-, inter-, pluri-, trans-, etc.) when in practice, he suggests, there is discipline-based interdisciplinarity or issue-driven interdisciplinarity. He named sustainability as an example for issue-driven interdisciplinarity, with multiple knowledge domains, and inherently oriented to societal problems. Issue-driven interdisciplinarity has to be 1) problem-focused, 2) integrated, 3) interactive, 4) reflexive, and 5) involves collaboration and partnerships.


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Examples for problem orientation are scenarios of forecasting and backcasting from future to present and vice versa, with several alternative futures to be explored in the forecasting mode. He also presented a matrix for integrating information, knowledge, dialogue and action. With regard to the aspect of integration, he differed between vertical and horizontal integration across fields and sectors, feedbacks and dynamics (complexity-based approach), and qualitative and quantitative aspects while taking the substantive definition of sustainability into account (ecological, social, and economic imperative). He also presented a model about the complexity of models – while there has to be some input into a model for it to make sense and offer additional knowledge, there is a turning point: the bigger the model the less it will be able to tell you. How do we communicate complex realities without losing the people? Interface and science communication are crucial in this regard. Interactivity includes tools for engagement, community engagement processes, three principles of interactive social research, and understanding as an emergent property. There is a challenge with models. “The real purpose of models is not about describing the model but to change mental models in the heads of users” (Wack) – most people are alienated from large systems, and receive too much information (“noise”) while at the same time lacking a mental model to make sense of that information. Citing Postman (“information is the garbage of the 90s”), Robinson points out that we need less, but more tailored information. He then presented the Georgia Basin Quest approach that has been designed by a research team (including himself) based at the University of British Columbia to facilitate debate about regional sustainability and to explore a desirable and feasible future. It is an interactive game that allows users to develop “what if…?” scenarios for the future of their region. Another example is the “Climate Change Calculator” that can be found on the internet. He named interface-driven modelling as one important principle of interactive social research. Other principles are backcasting as social learning (give a set of goals and attune the scenario until its outcome is consistent with the goals) and the involvement of users in design and also in research itself. The reflexivity of issue-driven interdisciplinarity encompasses multiple views (biophysical systems view and actor system view, that need a mutual interpretation), knowledge realms of sustainability (ideational, societal, biophysical, with cultural norms getting translated into social systems and vice versa, and with the interaction of social systems and natural systems, each shaping and limiting the other – how can these realms be integrated?), discursive approaches, as well as a procedural definition of sustainability. Robinson proceeded to talk about different partnerships (academic, external i.e. with NGOs) and about the challenge of institutionalizing interdisciplinarity – the resistance (“interdisciplinarity is the ghetto of the incompetent”), dangers, issues of teaching and evaluation, as well as products. As the world changes, societal demands have modified university research (that has been curiosity-driven originally) into more applied research and into commercialized knowledge production. An alternative model of university research would partly

return to curiosity-driven research, but include a large portion of engaged research, taking societal demands into account but also producing outputs for society (other than mere commercial ones). THURSDAY PLENARY

Thursday’s final plenary provided both a wrap-up and a look to the future with the title of “Looking Ahead: Making Global Change Research Relevant to Society” and was moderated by IHDP SC member Geoff Dabelko from the Environmental Change and Security Project, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington. The first speaker was Roger Kasperson from the George Perkins Marsh Institute at Clark University, who has also been a keynote speaker at the last Open Meeting (Montreal 2003). Kasperson started with the notions of “bridge between science and policy or practice”, as well as the “divide between them” – terms that represent a tunnel vision. Rather, we have a spider web with diffuse connections between science and practice. Focusing on risk perception and communication, he pointed out six central problems: 1) The knowledge mismatch – we have to respect different types of knowledge; the produced knowledge may not be the knowledge needed on a practice base. Scientific knowledge is conceptual and formally analytic, generic rather than specific. It is not enough to just “bundle” that knowledge for decision makers – this is still too much of a “one-way” flow of communication. 2) Knowledge signals and interpretation – when “bundles” of knowledge (for example about risks and hazards) from scientists enters the spider web, the media picks out “signals” from this knowledge that they consider important to society. These signals then get re-formulated, amplified, and, finally, changed. Scientific messages about risks can also get dampened – the problem then moves out of society and disappears from the public agenda. 3) Different understanding and use for problems – what is of primary concern to the analyst is often not the major goal to the decision maker who is dealing with a much broader set of issues. Decision makers often have “preferred” solutions and wait for the right event to happen to apply these preferred solutions. 4) Speed/policy mismatch – when a problem develops rapidly the decision-making process is too slow, the response of institutions etc. are delayed. How can we break out of this incremental decision-making process? Research findings show that the main problem with delayed policy response is not the knowledge but the policy mismatch. 5) Policy formulation of science may not be sufficient when it comes to implementation 6) Communities have to be made more resilient and for this they have to be involved, not only the decision makers. In order to produce knowledge that is usable and does not sit on the shelf: 1) We need a new, problem-specific kind of science. In the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, for example, protected areas did not receive any attention, and also energy – IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 7


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THE MORNING PLENARY SESSIONS one of our major economic, ecological and policy issues – was not explored. 2) We need collaborative processes. Otherwise, the issues that people in practice need to know will not be dealt with. 3) We struggle with the notion of knowledge systems. Various inputs from practice people involve very different kinds of knowledge (“local”, “expert”, “indigenous” etc.). How do we validate knowledge and how do we integrate local knowledge into scientific knowledge, or also qualitative and quantitative knowledge? 4) We need a more value-centred kind of knowledge while at the same time retaining certain traditional concepts such as high standards.

Photo by Ula Löw

Second speaker Aromar Revi from the Taru Leading Edge, New Delhi, started with a working definition of global change and a short look back into history. Globalization has been around for a long time and the anthropogenic change and coevolution of human systems and ecosystems has been significant during this period. Contemporary modernization-led change, however, has been dramatically different with its exponential rates of change of key state variables and its powerful underlying forces, some of which can rapidly degrade the resilience and adaptive capacity of traditional social systems and ecosystems. Global Change Research is relevant to various societies in different ways – to the poor it is relevant in terms of adaptation and limited mitigation strategies, or even just in terms of adaptation options for survival, while for transition countries it is relevant in terms of their opportunity to move up leveraging on risk sharing arrangement with OECD countries, and for OECD countries, global change research is relevant in terms of mitigation strategies and with regard to maintaining their status quo. Revi, just like most of the speakers before him, stated that global change research currently still is largely top-down, and that it needs to recognize the legitimacy of plural forms of relevance at multiple scales. Further, the phenomenon of interacting changes in many sub-systems (on which global change is based) requires engagement with these subsystems, addressing the root causes rather than symptoms. Looking at the scale relevance of global change research, a

Aromar Revi 8 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

weakening relevance can be observed at the lower scales of the world system. Is this because of the centrality of state patronage for global change research, and is this appropriate given that much of the innovative solutions come from outside the state system? The increasing reflexivity of the world system and the creation of “losers” (marginal, poor, vulnerable, agrarian, coastal and forest dwelling populations) and “winners” (transnational corporations, faith traditions, conflict enterprises, and energy and information industries) by global change implies that global change research will need to “take position” on key issues and stakes. Global change research (GCR) is driven by the normal sciences trying to come to terms with an increasingly post-normal world. It therefore requires a new integrative framework and meta-disciplinary body of knowledge. The key (epistemological) challenge for the GCR community is whether post-normal GCR exploration will be absorbed within mainstream research or whether a new kind of “science” that links theory and practice will be created. Revi proceeded with presenting older and newer models of global change, from “only one earth” and the earth as a largely closed system to the various driver models (i.e. exponential global population growth or exponential output growth) and an integrated model of these drivers, coupled socio-ecological systems constrained by finite resources and sinks of only one Earth. Multiple scenarios including various variables such as industrial output, population, food per person, pollution, life expectancy, human welfare index etc. all are pointing in broadly the same direction. Unless multiple structural changes are made, the world-system would tend to overshoot and collapse. The impact of certain factors should be looked at more closely, such as local history and economy, prices, technology and institutional innovation, geography and scale, culture, power and politics. And what can be done about poverty in this frame? Besides a set of particular questions that GCR could help answer for India, Revi formulated five policy questions: 1) What are the conditions under which per capita output is adequate to universally fulfill basic human needs (the eight Millennium Development Goals)? 2) How much economic growth and/or redistribution is required to stay ahead of population growth, especially in the global South? 3) What are the necessary social conditions to enable this? 4) What are the ecological constraints to this being possible? 5) Can the existing global (regional/national) political settlements and institutions provide an adequate framework to enable this in an acceptable time frame? He observed that somewhere along the way both the natural and the social sciences seem to have abandoned the early goal of developing a wider integrative scaffolding to examine Earth system questions in favour of more politically correct and pragmatic research. Maybe the time has come to change that now? Revi then continued with further models about 21st century developments that show shifts (and stabilization) of


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population, shifts of social systems, as well as shifts in economic hegemony (for example, a rapid rise of GDP in India and China) and global material fluxes. Some relative certainties that can be derived, for example, from a global landscape report by the US National Intelligence Council are that: globalization will largely be irreversible and likely to become less westernized; the world economy will be substantially larger; there is a rise of Asia and possible new economic middleweights; aging populations in established powers; energy supplies “in the ground” sufficient to meet global demand; environmental and ethical issues will come more to the fore; growing power of non-state actors; an increasing number of global firms will spread new technologies; an arc of instability spanning Africa, the Middle East and Asia; and the US will remain the single most powerful actor. Key uncertainties in this report are, amongst others, whether globalization will pull in lagging economies and the extent of gaps between “haves” and “have-nots”, whether the rise of China and India occurs smoothly, whether EU and Japan will be able to adapt work forces, welfare systems and integrated migrant populations. The dramatic change that the world will undergo by 2050 will be accentuated by heterogeneous regional behaviour and emergent discontinuities in the world system. National and regional dynamics are crucial to engage with to enable better global governance, and national/regional ecological models are returning after having been less than fashionable in the past decades. These models need a greater understanding of how global projects can be implemented regionally (such as the eight Millennium Development Goals), of possible shifts in global hegemony and regional political consolidation, of the implementation of new global environmental conventions, and of a possible emergence of a network world. This is an important opportunity for GCR to ground itself! One of various further models that Revi presented was the International Futures (Ifs) Model, a computer simulation of global systems that is especially suitable for the analysis of sustainable development and for examining the human dimensions of global change, based on underlying data for 164 countries. It is a powerful tool for cross-sectional and longitudinal analysis that provides a continuity of decision space, something policy makers look for. Finally, Revi laid out a reference mode for Global Change Research – it deals with simultaneous encounter with multiple sub-systemic thresholds, many of which are degrading; with no social or cultural memory of dealing with this class of problems; with no proven implicit or explicit models to address such challenges; with little clarity on the stability landscape; no institutional “control” structures and governance regimes in place, and, hence, high levels of uncertainty and risk to current trajectories of systems. One of the research challenges is that there are cybernetic limits to the use of current analytical tools when it comes to risk and VAR-assessments. The new, integrative “sustainability science” needs a calculus of the stability landscape of socio-ecological systems, first around a rudimentary parameter set, i.e. population(s), capital stock(s) and throughput densities. Then, as capacity and confidence grows, we could engage with multi-level sys-

Official sponsor of the 6th Open Meeting: UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization)

Financial sponsors of the 6th Open Meeting: APN (Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research) APN – CAPaBLE BMBF (Federal Ministry of Research and Education, Germany) DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Germany) Ford Foundation, India GWSP (Global Water Systems Project) IAI (The Inter American Institute for Global Change Research) ICSU (International Council for Science) InWEnt (Internationale Weiterbildung und Entwicklung) ISSC (International Social Science Council) NSF (National Science Foundation, USA) NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, USA) NRC (Norwegian Research Council) NRF (National Research Foundation, South Africa) RIHN (Research Institute for Humanity and Nature) START (System for Analysis, Research and Training) Stiftung Internationaler Begegnung, Sparkasse Köln-Bonn UNU (United Nations University)

Co-organizers of the 6th Open Meeting: CIESIN (Center for International Earth Science Information Network) IIASA (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis) IGES (Institute for Global Environmental Strategies) IHDP (International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change) UNU (United Nations University) The University of Bonn These co-organizers not only provided funding for several sessions, but also gave valuable scientific and logistical input in the planning process.

tems and more complex issues of distribution, power, institutions and others. A final conclusion was a citation of Marshall McLuhan (from Understanding Media, Sphere 1971): In the mechanical age now receding, many actions could be taken without too much concern. Slow movement insured that the reactions were delayed for considerable periods of time. Today the action and the reaction occur almost at the same time. We actually live mythically and integrally, as it were, but we continue to think in the old, fragmented space and time patterns of the pre-electric age. Western man acquired from the technology of literacy the power to act without reacting. We acquired the art of carrying out the most dangerous social operations with complete detachment. But our detachment was a posture of noninvolvement. In the electric age, when our central nervous system is technologically extended to involve us in the whole of mankind and to incorporate the whole of mankind in us, we necessarily participate, in depth, in the consequences of our every action. It is no longer possible to adopt the aloof and dissociated role of the literate Westerner. ULA LÖW is Information Officer and Editor at the IHDP Secretariat, Bonn, Germany; loew.ihdp@uni-bonn.de; http://www.ihdp.org; http://openmeeting.homelinux.org IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 9


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RESILIENCE, VULNERABILITY AND ADAPTATION B Y M ARCO A. JANSSEN AND E LINOR O STROM ➤

One of the parallel sessions at the 6th Open Meeting of the IHDP held in Bonn, Germany, reported on a series of synthesis activities related to human dimensions research on resilience, vulnerability and adaptation. In this article we briefly summarize the content presented at this well-attended session and place this content into the context of related activities to bring the communities of resilience, vulnerability and adaptation together. A little background to the panel is needed. In March 2004, the IHDP Scientific Committee appointed one of their members, Elinor Ostrom of Indiana University, to organize a study group to synthesize the relevant work of the crosscutting theme within the IHDP research community of resilience, vulnerability and adaptation. The goal was to gain an understanding of the state of the art of relevant research with relation to human dimensions of Global environmental Change. Furthermore, the Scientific Committee wanted a better overview of this theme within the core programs of IHDP and the potential, future research challenges. For each of the three core concepts an eminent scholar was asked to write a „state of the art“ report on the use of the concept in the human dimensions research. Furthermore, a formal bibliometric analysis was performed on those scholarly publications that use the concepts in the human dimensions research. As part of this endeavor, the first synthesis results were presented in a Workshop held in February 2005 at Arizona State University, a special parallel session was organized at the Open Meeting of IHDP in Bonn, and a publication of a special issue of Global Environmental Change is planned for 2006. Before we discuss the findings of the synthesis, we introduce the concepts by their original roots: The concept of resilience as used in the human dimensions of global change research was introduced by ecologist C. S. Holling (1973). According to Holling (1973, p. 17) „resilience determines the persistence of relationships within a system and is a measure of the ability of these systems to absorb change of state variable, driving variables, and parameters, and still persist“. Originally the concept had been used by ecologists in their analysis of population ecology and in the study of managing ecosystems. As such, it is mathematically based and model-oriented. Since the late 1980s the concept has increasingly been used in the analysis of human-environmental interactions. A number of scholars working on resilience of socialecological systems have organized themselves in 1999, forming the Resilience Alliance. The concept of vulnerability has its roots in the study of natural hazards. Vulnerability is defined as „the characteristics of a person or group in terms of their capacity to anticipate, cope with, resist, and recover from the impact of a natural hazard. It involves a combination of factors that determine the degree to which someone’s life and livelihood is put at risk by a discrete and identifiable event in nature or in society“ (Blaikie et al. 1994, p.9). In the 1990s natural hazards scholars started to focus on the vulnerability of people to impacts of environmental change, especially climate change. Geography 10 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

provides the major disciplinary legacy. In contrast to resilience there is no focus on mathematical models, but a focus on the comparative analysis of case studies. Adaptation to environmental variability has been a focus of anthropology since the early 1900s. In the 1990s scholars began to use the term adaptation for the study of the consequences of human induced climatic change, without explicitly relating this back to the conceptual origins in anthropology. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defines adaptation as an „adjustment in ecological, social, or economic systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli and their effects or impacts. This term refers to changes in processes, practices, or structures to moderate or offset potential damages or to take advantage of opportunities associated with changes in climate. It involves adjustments to reduce the vulnerability of communities, regions, or activities to climatic change and variability“ (McCarthy et al., 2001, p. 643). In recent years, the separate communities of resilience, vulnerability and adaptation have had a major influence on the research focused on the human dimensions of global change. This was quite visible at the Open Meeting in Bonn where many parallel sessions were related to vulnerability, resilience or adaptation research. As the synthesis of the literature confirmed, human dimensions scholars are starting to use the same terms, but they use the concepts sometimes differently and do not always work together to the degree that might have been expected given the thematic overlaps. Encouraging more cross-disciplinary work on these themes was a major reason for organizing the Arizona Workshop with a small group of 25 scholars from diverse disciplines to discuss the concepts and define future challenges for IHDP research that embrace the different concepts. Sander van der Leeuw (Arizona State University) organized this workshop at Arizona State University where representatives from the IHDP core projects, the IHDP Scientific Committee, and various scholars in resilience, vulnerability and adaptation were brought together. The session in Bonn was organized to report on the Arizona Workshop and on further developments growing out of this Workshop. Marco Janssen (Arizona State University) started with a presentation of his paper, co-authored with Michael Schoon, Weimao Ke and Katy Börner, all from Indiana University, on scholarly networks on resilience, vulnerability and adaptation within the human dimensions of Global environmental Change. The paper presents the results of a bibliometric analysis of the knowledge domains resilience, vulnerability and adaptation within the research activities on human dimensions of global environmental change. A database of 2,286 relevant publications during the last 30 years were collected and analysed in terms of co-authorship relations, and citation relations. The number of publications in the three knowledge domains increased rapidly during the last decade. However, the resilience knowledge domain is only weakly connected with the other two domains in terms of co-authorships and


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citations. The resilience knowledge domain has a background in ecology and mathematics with a focus on theoretical models, while the vulnerability and adaptation knowledge domains have a background in geography and natural hazards research with a focus on case studies and climate change research. There is an increasing number of cross citations and papers classified in multiple knowledge domains. This seems to indicate a slow merging of the different knowledge domains. The second speaker, Barry Smit from the University of Guelph focused on the concept of adaptation and adaptive capacity in the context of vulnerability of human systems to global changes. Barry discussed a number of different ways the concept has been used in the climate change community, illustrated by his own research where he used the various approaches. Earlier approaches focused on the macro level and the monetary valuation of adaptation, while recent studies look at ways to facilitate practical adaptations and enhancement of adaptive capacity at the community level. Carl Folke (Stockholm University) was the third speaker in the panel, and he discussed the recent developments in the area of resilience. Although the concept originates in ecology, it has been used for the analysis of social-ecological systems in recent years. Foci in recent years include the local and traditional knowledge of ecological dynamics, the importance of system dynamics across scale and the interactions between scales, and the difference between resilience and transformability of systems. Neil Adger from the University of East Anglia gave a presentation on vulnerability at Arizona State University, but was not able to attend the Open Meeting in Bonn. Adger discussed recent developments in vulnerability analysis, especially within the area of climate change. Adger formulates a number of challenges. First, a theory of adaptation is required that explicitly incorporates the formation, persistence and causes of vulnerability. A second challenge arises from the tension between objective and subjective measures of vulnerability. The vulnerability research community interacts with scientific communities in geological hazards, risk research, climate change, land use change and others. It seeks to build credibility in these interactions by developing credible measures of vulnerability to provide apparent rigor and comparability. In doing so, however, vulnerability measures necessarily rely on objectively measurable or external outcomes of vulnerability where vulnerability may be perceived or experienced differently by those who are the most vulnerable. From these discussions of the three core concepts, one learns about the different intellectual backgrounds, but that they also are beginning to use similar terms. For example, the term adaptive capacity is a key term used in the resilience community, and the term resilience is also used in the vulnerability community. Due to the different intellectual histories, these terms do not always have the same meaning. Gilberto Gallopín, from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean in Chile, presented his analysis of the epistemological linkages among the concepts of resilience, vulnerability and adaptation. These concepts are related in nontrivial ways. For example, vulnerability is not the opposite of resilience. Therefore, efforts should be made to develop clear (and hopefully,

shared) specifications of the concepts in the abstract, ecological, and social senses, that are mutually compatible. This can be critical for the interactions between social and natural sciences in the study of the coupled socio-ecological systems The last speaker at the Bonn session, Oran Young (University of California), presented a paper on: „How Will Globalization Affect the Resilience, Vulnerability, and Adaptability of Socio-Ecological Systems at Various Scales? An Agenda for Scientific Research.“ The paper is co-authored by Frans Berkhout, (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Gilberto Gallopín, Marco Janssen, Elinor Ostrom, and Sander van der Leeuw. During the intense discussions at the Arizona Workshop, challenges were addressed regarding the future research agenda of human dimensions of global environmental change from the perspective of the concepts resilience, vulnerability and adaptation. A topic that emerged during the Workshop was the implications of globalization on the resilience, vulnerability and adaptability of social-ecological systems at scales ranging from the local to the global. Globalization itself is not treated as a variable, owing to the term’s lack of precision and the absence of standard measures or indicators of globalization. Rather, globalization refers to a collection of related developments that can be disaggregated and analyzed one at a time. The structure of the global social-ecological system is changing because of changing connections at all kind of scales. Sometimes developments are more rapid at higher levels than the lower levels can deal with, as in the case of the changing institutions in the European Union. We get more connected at a global scale leading to a faster spread of information and infectious diseases. The diversity, whether it is biodiversity, language diversity or institutional diversity, is decreasing. In sum, globalization has implications for the resilience, vulnerability and adaptability of social-ecological systems. Globalization is not a new phenomenon, but it may be an important crosscutting theme to address resilience, vulnerability and adaptation of social-ecological systems at multiple scales. Therefore, Young and his co-authors see globalization as a key research challenge for the IHDP community in the coming years. The papers presented during this Bonn panel will be brought together after revision for a special issue of the journal Global Environmental Change on the topic of „Resilience, Vulnerability and Adaptation“, which will be edited by Marco Janssen and Elinor Ostrom. The special issue will appear in 2006. A number of further activities are in development for the near future, since the general opinion of many human dimensions scholars is that the crosscutting theme of „resilience, vulnerability and adaptation“ within the human dimensions community is a valuable one, and a theme that does bring scholars together from various backgrounds with a similar focus. M ARCO J ANSSEN is Assistant Professor at the School of Human Evolution and Society Change, Arizona State University, USA; Marco.Janssen@asu.edu E LINOR O STROM is Professor of Political Science at the Center for the Study of Institutions, Population and Environment, Indiana University, USA; ostrom@indiana.edu References: www.ihdp.org/updateom05/references.html IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 11


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NON-STATE AUTHORITY AND LEGITIMACY IN GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL GOVERNANCE B Y F RANK B IERMANN ➤ The emerging system of

Photo by Ula Löw

global environmental governance is marked by a shift from state-driven politics and inter-governmental cooperation to the inclusion of non-state actors and to new forms of public-private and private-private cooperation. Carefully orchestrated campaigns of environmentalists have changed foreign policy of powerful states and initiated new global rules. International networks of scientists and experts have emerged, in a mix of self-organization and state-sponsorship, to provide complex information that is indispensable for policy-making on issues marked by analytic and normative uncertainty. Corporations have also taken a more prominent role in international decision-making, for example in the Global Compact that major firms have concluded with the United Nations. These activities of private actors in global environmental governance are no longer confined to lobbying governments. Increasingly, non-state actors participate in global institutions and at times negotiate their own standards, such as in the Forest Stewardship Council or the Marine Stewardship Council, two standard-setting bodies created by major corporations and environmental advocacy groups without any direct involvement of governments. Public-private co-operation has received even more impetus with the 2002 Johannesburg World Summit on Sustainable Development and its focus on partnerships of governments, non-governmental organizations and the private sector – the so-called Partnerships for Sustainable Development. This emergence of private actors and private institutional mechanisms in global environmental governance can be broadly explained by its problem characteristics. Analytical and normative uncertainties require insights and value statements that states no longer can gain through traditional forms of policy-making based on formal representation by their

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domestic constituencies. Functional or spatial interdependencies create policy deadlocks that make space for private rulesetting, as was the case in global policies on fisheries or forests. Global environmental governance therefore requires the private actor at the global and local levels. At the same time, however, this gives private actors new degrees of autonomy from intergovernmental or single-state decision-making. All this poses challenging research questions. Non-state actors lack the traditional means of coercion and power that are defining characteristics of the state. Instead, non-state actors yield influence through softer forms of authority that often work through persuasion, arguing, the contribution of new knowledge and the altering of global discourses. The exact ways in which such authority is used, however, is not yet fully understood. Most literature still builds on single-disciplinary case-study research with case selection often influenced by practical considerations or flawed through case-selection on the dependent variable, in particular where only ‘success stories’ are chosen. There is hence a need for research programmes on transnational institutions that is complementary to the major effort of the 1990s on analysing intergovernmental environmental regimes. These programmes could explore key factors that explain the emergence of public-private and private-private governance mechanisms at global and regional levels, as well as the political effectiveness of private governance. Furthermore, the increasing authority of non-state actors in global environmental governance poses new questions regarding their accountability and legitimacy. While the nation state can take recourse to formal means of legitimation that include universal elections representing all interests and stakeholders, non-state actors are forced to rely on different forms of legitimacy, including moral claims related to a public good, semi-democratic claims related to membership, or outcome-oriented claims that derive their legitimacy from the results of the activity of non-state actors. Despite a growing body of literature, the legitimacy of non-state actors, including whether private involvement in global decision-making fosters or harms the ideal of global democracy, has not yet been sufficiently analysed. These questions of authority, accountability and legitimacy of non-state actors in global environmental governance stood at the centre of a series of presentations at the 6th Open Meeting, as part of the larger framework of the IHDP core project ‘Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change’ (IDGEC). None of these papers addressed the more traditional research foci in the field of non-state actors, such as environmentalist organizations like Greenpeace or the World Wide Fund for Nature. Instead, all papers explored new actors that have been underresearched, such as intergovernmental bureaucracies or multinational corporations, or new, yet unexplored mechanisms of global environmental governance, notably transnational rule-making.


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In one paper, Steffen Bauer, a researcher at the Freie Universität Berlin and a fellow of the Global Governance Project (glogov.org), presented the research design and first results of the MANUS project, a 4-year research effort of a group of ten researchers based in Germany and the Netherlands. The MANUS project analyses a type of actors that has been relatively neglected by mainstream International Relations research: the plethora of international bureaucracies ranging from the United Nations headquarters to the often minuscule yet influential secretariats of international treaties. Bauer’s presentation provided a first theoretical conceptualization for the assessment and explanation of the influence of international bureaucracies. He reviewed the authority of bureaucracies in the light of different theories of International Relations, notably rational institutionalism and sociological institutionalism, and developed different criteria employed in the MANUS project to assess the influence of international bureaucracies. Bauer and colleagues identified their influence in three functional areas. One domain of influences are the knowledge and belief systems of actors, where bureaucracies play a role through the funding and administration of research, synthesis of scientific findings, and development of problem frames and policy assessments. Bauer gave the international response to global warming as an example: In the late 1980s, uncertainty about global warming prevented governments from taking action. Knowledge was non-existent or disputed among experts and lay-people. In this situation, it was the bureaucrats of the World Meteorological Organisation and the UN Environment Programme that initiated and organized the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to develop consensus documents on the state of knowledge and on possible political response strategies. Bauer and colleagues identified international bureaucracies also as influencing global environmental governance through the creation, support and shaping of norm-building processes. Furthermore, they viewed international bureaucracies as crucial in the implementation and revision of treaties, in particular through the staff of treaty secretariats, which organize meetings, set agendas and report to the conferences of the parties. International bureaucracies appear crucial in shaping procedures, providing arenas for issue-specific negotiations and framing inter- and transnational processes of bargaining and arguing. Finally, international bureaucracies shape global environmental governance through assistance to countries to implement international agreements, which reshapes national interests. Bauer then explored a number of hypotheses to explain variation in the influence of these bureaucracies, focusing as independent variables on the external institutional setting of bureaucracies („policy“), the problem structure in specific issue areas („problems“), and the internal factors that could explain variation in bureaucratic authority in addition to problem structures and external institutional settings („people and procedures“). The second paper by Philipp Pattberg and Klaus Dingwerth from the University of Bremen and the London School of Economics-and also both affiliated with the Global Governance Project-focused on one specific aspect of nonstate agency-rule-making-and explored the authority and legitimacy of transnational rules through a comparative study

Photo by Ula Löw

INSTITUTIONAL DIMENSIONS

of different transnational rule-making mechanisms. They argued that as a relatively recent phenomenon, transnational rule-making processes could be considered the most apparent expression of the shift from state-driven politics and intergovernmental cooperation to non-state-driven global governance. In recent years, many such rule-making processes have emerged around issues of global sustainability politics. As they often focused on issues where intergovernmental decisionmaking processes were either stalled or absent, some authors have framed these processes as a merely complementary activity to intergovernmental negotiation. However, others have praised these new mechanisms for being more inclusive, transparent and accountable than intergovernmental decisionmaking, and have hence suggested that non-state multi-stakeholder processes could serve as a blueprint for global policymaking in the ‘age of globalization’. Pattberg and Dingwerth, on their part, attempted a systematic approach to this debate and asked three questions: (1) Why do transnational rules emerge in global sustainability politics? (2) How do these rules acquire authority and thus matter in world politics? (3) What difference do certain procedural and organizational features make with reference to the democratic legitimacy of transnational rules? To answer these questions, Dingwerth and Pattberg have researched in detail five transnational processes: the World Commission on Dams, the Forest Stewardship Council, the Marine Stewardship Council, the Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies, and the Global Reporting Initiative. Pattberg and Dingwerth argued that transnational systems of rules emerge because demand for regulation is not met by adequate supply on the national and international level. Going beyond a rather simplistic functional explanation, their research indicates that two additional features seem to be decisive: the ability of non-state actors to construct a problem in a novel way, most often as a risk for business interests, and an inclusive idea that bridges existing differences, often based on concepts of balanced representation, openness and shared ownership. They also found that transnational systems of rules show three types of influences: normative influences that are the result of the concrete rules of the institution (e.g. how to conduct a major dam-building project or how to conduct corporate sustainability reporting); cognitive and discursive IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 13


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influences that result from the transfer of knowledge and learning processes (e.g. the framing of climate change as a risk for institutional investors by the Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies); and structural influences that result from the interaction of transnational rules with existing political or economic structures (e.g. the shift in markets and trade flows induced by the Forest Stewardship Council). Pattberg and Dingwerth finally laid out that the democratic quality of transnational rules depends on features that can be attributed to distinct organizational forms of transnational rule-making: Commissions (such as the World Commission on Dams) and foundations (such as the Global Reporting Initiative) are more conducive to a deliberative mode of interaction, while membership associations (such as the Forest Stewardship Council) have-at least where membership criteria are relatively relaxed-a comparative advantage in terms of inclusiveness and accountability. The third paper was presented by Phillip Stalley of George Washington University. In his paper, Stalley analysed the role that foreign firms play in environmental governance in developing countries, an issue that generates particular relevance from the fact that a large portion of pollution in developing countries stems from industry and that most developing countries compete to attract foreign investments. Stalley laid out that many in the activist and policy arenas suspect that foreign firms use their economic clout to press Southern governments to turn a blind eye to environmental protection, while business representatives argue that corporate environmentalism, ethical supply chain policies and technology transfer serve to enhance environmental governance in host countries. Stalley explained that both arguments make intuitive sense, yet that the academic literature is surprisingly devoid of case studies-which turns the issue essentially into an empirical question. Stalley therefore presented his work on the environmental activity of foreign firms in the chemical industry of China, based on extensive field research in Shanghai. His analysis extended not only to the environmental behaviour of foreign firms themselves, but also to their relationship with environmental regulators and domestic firms. In conclusion, Stanley sketched possible policy options for governments seeking to use foreign investment in a manner that enhances sustainable development. Kyla Tienhaara of the Institute for Environmental Studies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, and a fellow of the Global Governance Project, made the final presentation of the session. Like Stalley, she focused on multinational corporations acting as foreign investors in developing countries. However, in contrast to his presentation, she addressed how these actors might have a negative impact on domestic regulation. In particular, she explained how foreign investors could use investor-state dispute settlement mechanisms to challenge environmental regulation. Tienhaara argued that while investor-state dispute mechanisms have been present in bilateral investment treaties since the 1960s, there has been a substantial increase in the number of disputes brought before international arbitration mechanisms in recent years. One way in which environmental regulations have been challenged is through provisions in investment agreements on expropriation. While direct expropria14 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

tions and nationalizations have become quite rare, so-called ‘indirect expropriations’ have become more pertinent. One particular type of indirect expropriation, a ‘regulatory taking’, is particularly relevant, as it is a taking of property that arises from state measures, such as the regulation of the environment. According to Tienhaara, the jurisprudence on the matter of regulatory takings, and the requirement to compensate such takings, has been mixed. Tienhaara stressed that while it is critical that researchers assess the outcomes of investor-state disputes that involve matters of public policy, the procedures followed in arbitration mechanisms make this difficult and in some cases even impossible. She argued that there is a lack of transparency, accountability and participation of third parties in investment disputes. In particular, procedural problems are that not all cases are registered, that proceedings are closed awards that do not have to be published, that parties choose their own judges and individuals may act as both counsel and as judges, that there is no precedent and no appeals process, and that in most cases there is no procedure for submission of amicus curiae briefs. Tienhaara suggested that these procedural problems are not only relevant for researchers, but crucially, for regulators, particularly in developing countries. She hypothesized that the uncertainty created by the current framework, when combined with the financial risk involved in proceeding to investment arbitration, could create situations in which the threat of an investment dispute is sufficient to convince a government to reverse or amend an offending regulation. She presented a case study from Indonesia that involved multinational mining corporations that had threatened the Indonesian government with investment arbitration over a 1999 forestry law, which banned open-pit mining methods in protected forests. After several years of debate the Indonesian government eventually allowed thirteen prioritized companies to operate open-pit mines in protected forests. According to Tienhaara, there is evidence to suggest that the government’s decision was based, at least in part, on the desire to avoid arbitration. Tienhaara concluded that more research needed to be conducted on how investor-state disputes may be influencing government policy, and also on how the current system of investor protection can be reformed to make it more accountable, transparent and inclusive. All four papers presented at this session at the IHDP 2005 Open Meeting presented valuable insights into one of the most exciting areas of current global governance researchauthority and legitimacy beyond the state. All papers made important contributions, yet all also made clear that this area of research is by far not sufficiently explored. Therefore, the analysis of private agency and of transnational institutions in global environmental governance is likely to gain salience in the research agenda of the IHDP-IDGEC core project in the years that follow the project’s first Synthesis Conference in December 2006 in Bali, Indonesia. F RANK B IERMANN is Professor of Political Science and Environmental Policy Sciences, Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands; frank.biermann@ivm.vu.nl


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PROGRESS IN INDUSTRIAL TRANSFORMATION THE BONN 2005 IT SESSIONS B Y A NNA W IECZOREK AND F RANS B ERKHOUT ➤ The last couple of

years, two in particular – since the former Open Meeting in Montreal in 2003 – brought some interesting advances in the field of Industrial Transformation. Firstly, it is now widely recognized in scientific and some policy circles that current traditional policy approaches will not be sufficient in our struggle with Global Environmental Change (GEC). Given the complexity and urgency of these problems, a transformation of the way in which human needs are being satisfied, is seen as a promise though still necessitating a good knowledge base before informing policy on sound alternatives. Secondly, science in the field of IT has progressed to the extent where we now have a good understanding of what is meant by a „transformation towards sustainability“ – an issue still not fully settled at the time of the Montreal discussions. Namely, there seems to be an agreement – although language may differ in some cases – that a transformation towards sustainability denotes a long term, major or better say radical (as opposed to incremental) change (Elzen & Wieczorek, 2005) in the socio-ecological regime. Such a transformation encompasses mutually reinforcing changes in the economic, technological, institutional and socio-cultural domains. Analysts from different backgrounds have used various concepts to address the complexity of such change: system innovation, regime transformation, technological transition, socio-economic paradigm shift, industrial transformation, and others. Despite of these rather significant developments there are still many serious challenges in dealing with transformations towards sustainability. A major challenge is to better understand the dynamics of these processes. Their complexity requires a combination of insights developed in various separate disciplines. An ongoing and in-depth discussion between these different perspectives might help to identify common themes and potential synergies to characterize and understand transition processes. This could eventually contribute to the creation of policies that have the ambition to induce somewhat more radical changes than e.g. „the improvement of efficiency by factor 4.“

NICHE-REGIME INTERACTIONS

System innovation studies took socio-technical systems as a unit of analysis of sustainability transformations. From the IT perspective, this seems not a bad idea as long as the vision is to transform these systems towards sustainability, with environment being a part of it1. The system innovation writings in the area of sustainability transitions emphasize this special role of

1 It is perhaps sensible to explain here that system innovation studies do not only look at transitions that take place on environmental grounds but also search for general patterns of change in socio-technical systems, such as e.g. development of a steam ship or an engine car. Despite of the recent recognition of the institutional embedding of socio-technical systems, still not much and often no attention is spared for the ecological implications of these changes.

technological niches, which generate radical innovations, and are the locations for learning processes (Elzen, 2004). These niches need to be protected against natural market selection if they are to induce change to the existing, often locked-in regimes. This strategic niche management as described by Kemp, Schot and Hogema (1998) served as a basis for the transition management ideas presented at the 6th Open Meeting by Jan Rotmans. He argued that the management of transition in a strict steering/planning-and-control sense is not possible though there are vital chances to modulate the ongoing dynamics towards sustainability goals. In his speech, Jan Rotmans presented transition management as a new form of governance based on adjustment and learning in the 4-steps cycle: 1) Establishment and development of a transition arena 2) Development of a sustainability visions and transition agenda 3) Initiation and execution of transition experiments 4) Evaluation, monitoring of the process, goals, policies and learning effects However, as promising as this approach may seem for solving at least parts of the GEC problem, it also leaves quite a number of open questions to be asked about the role of technological niches in sustainable development; the interaction between niches and regimes that are supposed to undergo a radical change; and the role of stakeholders. A number of papers in the session presenting the Sustainable Technologies Programme STP of the UK Economic and Social Research Council touched upon these issues. Adrian Smith, for instance, argued in his presentation that the idea of niche development is not as new as it may seem. It actually dates back to the 1970’s when green practitioners began developing niche alternatives. In order to inform current niche theory, Smith analysed the history of eco-housing and organic food in the UK. He highlighted the significance of translations between niche and mainstream contexts, the importance of mainstream tensions, and the roles of true believers. „Translation“ was referred to as the finding that socio-technical practices developed in the niche context would only diffuse if they can be translated into meaningful practices in the very different contexts that pertain in the mainstream. „Tensions“ were referred to as the fact that niches would not be turned to as a source of innovation for mainstream actors unless those actors feel themselves under pressure to change. Meanwhile, true believers were presented as vital to the initiation of green niches, as those who have the ideals, motivation, and stamina to try and get initiatives established, often despite being poorly resourced. True believers are also concerned about cooption of their ideal practices by the mainstream. According to Smith, Green niches can thus be sources for mainstream innovation, but not models for innovation. Chris Hendry, in his presentation, further discussed how niche applications spread across market and what the requireIHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 15


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ments are for establishing successful niche positions. He used case studies of fuel cell development in three market applications to illustrate specific market entry approaches, adoption barriers and the roles of different actors in overcoming them. He also argued that not all regime changes involve the same set of factors. A complementary analytical perspective on regime shifts by investigating factors and mechanisms that weaken prevailing regimes and by this create space for the emergence of alternative socio-technical settings has been proposed in another session on the „Sustainable Transition of Infrastructures“ by Bernhard Truffer and Jochen Markard. The authors used examples of innovation in the electricity supply sector that have the potential of inducing sustainable transformation, and they emphasized the strong influence of institutional setting and actor constellation in the process. ACTORS

In fact, actors and their roles in either promoting, hindering or shaping change towards sustainability becomes a theme that gets increasingly more attention within the IT type of research. Whether government, consumers or NGOs – they are all found to be crucial to the potential change. Next to the analysis of the market incentives, such as profitability via adding value in the food system (contribution by Ken Green), the issue of partnerships is being investigated as a factor that may bring either incremental or radical innovation (as described in a case from the waste sector by Rachel Slater). Ineke Meijer, in her presentation, investigated the influence of perceived transition uncertainties on the stakeholders’ innovation decision. She stressed that better insight in the uncertainties may help us (i) understand the process of change better and (ii) suggest possible points of policy intervention. Meijer proposed a systematics of various uncertainties and analysed the effects that these various types of uncertainties have on the actor’s decisions in the case of a transition towards a microcogeneration of heat and power systems in the Netherlands. GREAT TRANSITIONS

Moving somewhat beyond the niche-regime interface and beyond questions on the specific role of technology or actors in initiating radical change towards sustainability, the Open Meeting contributions again emphasized the need to investigate transitions at a higher, more aggregated, macro-level of world regimes. The open question, however, is: Are there methods that can help us identify such processes and factors by which societies can identify the stage of transition they currently follow? This is to compare transformations that take place at different times and at different geographical locations. Perhaps these insights can be helpful for identifying possible points of intervention. Marina Fischer Kowalski, in her presentation on comparing transitions in the North and South, proposed to apply some new methods of „multidimensional time distance analysis“. In her study on the transition from the agrarian to an industrial mode of subsistence she focused on (i) the biophysical dimensions of social systems such as population dynamics, energy and material flows and land use; and on (ii) the socio-economic factors. One of the most interesting outcomes of her study on past transitions across time and 16 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

space in, for example, the energy sector was that Austria reached the same level of development as the UK, but 200 years faster and with less impact on the environment. Extrapolation to the future in the same sector suggests that countries that are currently developing will need between some 50 years (Latin America) and about 250 years (South Asia) to catch up with countries like Austria or the UK. Still, the ongoing transitions are strongly influenced by multiple factors and co-evolutionary developments, which may lead to very different transition pathways. The good news for policy makers is that the pace and the direction of these processes may be influenced by appropriate policies. SCENARIOS

Scenarios are yet another useful tool to explore future developments and they can also help to inform strategic decisions (by policy makers as well as industry) in situations of uncertainty. In his talk, Boelie Elzen argued that the existing scenario methods are not well suited to explore transitions. They pay little attention to interactions between technical and societal developments and neglect cross-links between various developments. Boelie proposed a new scenario method that explicitly pays attention to the interrelation between technical and societal factors in innovation processes (Socio-Technical Scenarios – STSc). The method builds upon the above-mentioned multilevel transition theory and explores possible developments on various levels (niche, regime, landscape). It describes how these levels can influence each other to present a richer picture of possible pathways towards sustainability. He evaluated the usefulness of this STSc method for coordination of activities of different stakeholders towards sustainability in the mobility sector. Four interesting transition scenarios (Firewalled Europe, Sustainable Trade, Fossil Trade and Fenceless Europe) for European energy transition have been presented by Jos Bruggink. His storylines connect plausible global developments in the world energy markets and climate change policies with European energy regime changes and related national (EU member states) innovation pressures. Bruggink expects that two major events would have a grand influence on the urgency and direction of the energy innovation in Europe: – The arrival of a global peak in oil production; and – The failure in global climate change policies. (Bruggink 2005) His conclusion was that the world economy is moving towards a fossil trade scenario where oil production will peak in the period of 2010-2020 and where there are no viable postKyoto climate change policies. Only a strong link between climate change and poverty reduction, and between trade and environment, could lead to a sustainable trade future where post-Kyoto policies develop effectively. The European energy sector then has a chance to turn to a large-scale trade in renewables. SUMMARIZING …

The discussions on these early research results reveal great progress in the field of Industrial Transformation as well as the emergence of an epistemic community that is interested in


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specific aspects of radical change in socio-technical systems that would bring sustainable development. In that respect, the disciplinary divide between the various contributions is serving a good purpose and is by no means counterproductive. Transitions are highly complex and uncertain processes and therefore they benefit from these different perspectives (Olsthoorn, Wieczorek, 2006). We need to continue the work on analysing past transitions but also be cautious about jumping into quick conclusions about general patterns of change. The future may evolve along very different paths than expected. Societies and their conscious actions and policies, however, do not remain without impact on the shape of our future. Management of change is no easy task. The complexity of transition processes implies a warning that transition policies cannot be based on simple steering philosophies. They will need to take into account interaction between different stakeholders, their interpretations of the concept of sustainable development, and they need to leave room for learning and feedback.

This report is based on selected presentations in the field of Industrial Transformation at the 6th Open Meeting in Bonn and strongly influenced by the authors’ participation in specific sessions. We thank all for their contributions and hope very much to meet at the next OM and further advance this transdisciplinary research agenda. A NNA W IECZOREK is Executive Officer of the Industrial Transformation core science project of IHDP at the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands; anna.j.wieczorek@ivm.vu.nl; http://130.37.129.100/ivm/research/ihdp-it/index.html F RANS B ERKHOUT is Chair of the IT Scientific Steering Committee, based at IVM, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; frans.berkhout@ivm.vu.nl References: www.ihdp.org/updateom05/references.html

TALK FOR A CHANGE: COMMUNICATION IN SUPPORT OF SOCIETAL RESPONSE TO CLIMATE CHANGE B Y S USANNE C. M OSER AND PATRICK LUGANDA INTRODUCTION

News about global climate change isn’t good. Scanning the papers on a regular basis, in fact, one could argue, news is getting worse. And if we are honest, we may even say that the news isn’t the half of it. The scientific literature – not constrained by the economic pressures of the news business, journalistic norms of balancing viewpoints, competing political priorities, public indifference, and the whims of „issue attention cycles“ – lays out in far greater depth and sometimes painstaking detail where things are at. Status, trends, and outlooks of the world’s climate, ecosystems, economic and social vulnerabilities, and societal capacities to deal with multiple rapid and interacting changes can easily dishearten the close observer. Indeed, the gulf between the urgency that many scientists see in global climate change and compounding global environmental and social changes vis-à-vis the extent of societal response to date (both in terms of mitigation and adaptation) is far from closing. One session at the 6th Open Meeting of the Human Dimensions of Global Change Research Community in Bonn argued that one important reason for this persistent gap is inadequate communication of the risks and possible solutions of climate change to those who could enact changes. Such actors do not only include policy-makers involved in international climate negotiations, but ultimately every one: business executives, local and national government officials, civic society actors in non-governmental organizations as much as in houses of worship, educators, and individuals in their personal lives. Communication plays a critical role in problem definition and agenda setting, creating an informed public and policy debate,

social mobilization, helping to build political pressure necessary for policy and social change, and in identifying, promoting and spreading possible behavioral and policy solutions. For communication to effectively play these roles, however, there is a growing need to better understand how the recipients of climate change information will treat the information that they receive, given specific personal and cultural concerns and backgrounds and socio-economic contexts, how they will respond behaviorally, and what opportunities and barriers exist to implementing a particular change promoted in a communication campaign.

The communication-social change continuum is here presented with a focus on individual behavior change. This does not suggest that individual behavior is the most important locus of climate change response; however, individuals – no matter how far the reach of their decisionmaking powers – will go through a similar process. Important contextual forces (e.g., culture, power relationships, interests, capacities) will shape this bi-directional and cyclical process in unique ways. IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 17


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The session, entitled „Climate Change Needs Social Change – The Role of Communication“, organized by the authors, brought together a variety of perspectives from Europe, the U.S., and Africa1,2 to explore the communication – social change continuum around the following questions: • What would effective communication of climate change look like? • What role can such communication play in facilitating social change and societal response to climate change? • What does research on communication and social change have to offer to inform improvements in our communication practice? • What (cultural) differences and similarities are there in communication practice across nations that can both validate „good“ practice and inform future research? Papers in this session explored the interactions, processes, and impacts of communication at a variety of „interfaces,“ for example, that between the media – mainly print and TV – and public opinion in the US (Maxwell Boykoff, University of California) and in the UK (Lorraine Whitmarsh, University of Bath); between experts and the media in northern/coastal Germany (Harald Heinrichs, University of Lüneburg, and Hans Peter Peters, Research Center Jülich); between the law, the media, government, and society at large in the US (Marilyn Averill, University of Colorado); and between individuals and communities – sometimes, but not always, mediated by formal media channels – in East, Central and Southern Africa (Patrick Luganda). An overview of the communication-social change continuum in the context of societal response to a global change challenge such as climate change was provided by Susanne Moser. It offered the conceptual „glue“ for the individual papers. This summary touches on some of the common themes and interesting differences emerging from the papers. WHAT ROLE CAN COMMUNICATION PLAY IN SOCIETAL RESPONSE TO CLIMATE CHANGE?

The papers covered a wide variety of ways in which communication can facilitate social change. Some focused on the first and maybe most fundamental ways – such as raising awareness of or alerting to a problem, especially global ones that are difficult to detect with „the naked eye.“ More deeply, communication, especially lively and interactive forms of communication can help people create understanding and meaning. As such communication helps in direct and indirect ways to shape public or policy discourse, and thereby, influence public perceptions of the severity of climate change, perceptions of the state of the science on it, and perceptions of solutions. This was illustrated clearly in Boykoff ’s paper, which investigated the impact that the journalistic norm of balancing viewpoints has had in the US on public perception of the state of the scientific consensus on climate change. 1 Unfortunately, the double session of papers was truncated by nearly 50% by the fact that contributors from South America, other African countries and Asia were unable to attend the meeting due to lack of funding. There are plans underway to compile written versions of all the papers – those presented and those intended for presentation – in a forthcoming Special Issue of the new e-journal Communication, Cooperation and Participation. 2 See http://openmeeting.homelinux.org/abstract_listing.asp; locate Session 98; click on „details“ of the session description and for the abstracts of all papers.

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The public/media discourse in turn helps shape political agenda and can garner or dissipate public support for policymaking. Thus, the media plays a crucial role as mediator between science and society (Whitmarsh, Heinrichs). The media also plays a critical mediating role between issues of science and the law by highlighting and interpreting court cases about climate change to the listening public (Averill). Clearly, it is litigation itself that can help clarify existing law, influence corporate behavior, assign governmental responsibility, and validate (or undermine as it were) the credibility, legitimacy and salience of science. But the media, by reporting on such cases, can extend these roles of litigation to encouraging public debate, simply by casting the legal debates in a certain way in the public arena. Finally, as Luganda illustrated, communication among individuals and communities can play an important role as a first-order coping strategy. Talking about „strange weather“ and changes in climatic patterns simply makes climate change less puzzling and helps integrate these changes into daily conversation and life. Taking a leaf from communication of HIV/AIDS in Africa, he suggested that communication is a cheap and powerful tool to reach deeply into people’s personal lives, allowing for information to be shared easily among concerned or affected populations. ELEMENTS OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION OF CLIMATE CHANGE

The question what role communication could play in societal response to climate change immediately raises a follow-on question about actual impact or effectiveness. The presentations addressed the potential and actual impacts of communication, but did not directly answer the question what would constitute effective communication. Obviously, the answer to that question is highly context-dependent. It depends on the stated goal of a communication effort, the communicatoraudience interaction, who the audience is and what they need or want, the fit of communicated information and knowledge with the audience’s mental models, pre-existing knowledge, decision-making responsibilities and capacities. For example, is the intent to simply raise awareness, to inform, to alert the population at large or a specific subset, is it to educate in broader and/or deeper ways, is it to mobilize people into action, or to enable and empower them to take a specific type of action? In principle, communication effectiveness may be judged by what actually has been said, how it has been said, who and/or how many have been reached by the communication, how that information has been received, and what the impact of the communication was on perceptions, understanding, decisions, and behavior. As a result, the measures of effective communication one could envision are varied and the ones we have are typically incomplete. All too frequently, however, communication efforts are not followed up with attempts to measure their impact. We would argue that the measures that do exist can reveal underlying assumptions about what effective communication is believed to look like. For example, sometimes we count the number of pamphlets distributed or the hits on a web site. These may be the easiest ways to measure „impact“ yet they


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also tend to reflect an underlying notion of communication as one-way information delivery, where it is assumed that „the information speaks for itself“ and will motivate appropriate societal response. Alternatively, one may measure – and social scientists frequently do, as reflected in several of the papers presented – the change in perceptions or levels of understanding in specified audiences over time as a result of communication (Boykoff, Whitmarsh). Sometimes these perceptions and understandings are compared to a desired level of knowledge (e.g., lay versus expert understanding of risks, lay versus expert mental models of global warming). This approach is common in contexts where the goal of communication is education, greater preparedness for certain risks, or where researchers are interested in understanding the impacts of different framings, content, communication media, and channels have on public understanding. Another approach – represented by another one of the papers (Heinrichs) – is to judge the subjective satisfaction with communication interaction among those involved, for example of reporters and scientists when they interact. Moving toward decision or behavioral outcomes, one may also measure effectiveness by the number or types of actions taken in response to communication (as alluded to by Averill). Typically, due to the multi-causal influences on decisions and behaviors, these linkages are not only difficult to measure, but also rather weak (Moser). Finally, as another paper illustrated, communication is also an essential ingredient in the building of social capital (loosely understood here as informal networks of trustful relationships that support societal action). Measures of social capital are elusive, but the notion reveals an understanding of communication as a two-way exchange (Luganda, Whitmarsh). This latter notion comes closest in some ways to the origin of the word communication, which shares its Latin roots with that of communion, i.e., a process of imparting, sharing, and making common. In short, the measures of communication effectiveness that we have are partial, but valuable measuring sticks for how well we are doing. What we know from these studies is that most lay audiences in the U.S., Europe and Africa, still misunderstand the causes and dynamic of climate change, still know little of possible solutions, still find it difficult to relate this global change to their lives and more immediate concerns and hence still don’t see the relevance or urgency of the issue, and still don’t understand why action is required now. Studies also show that scientists and other communicators (e.g., in environmental NGOs) frequently employ ineffective methods of trying to reach lay or policy audiences, and that the cultural and institutional gap between experts and the media continues to impede more effective interaction. Thus, improvement in practice is needed, and more studies of communication effectiveness are needed, including comparative studies across nations, cultures, issues, and time. THE ROLE OF SCIENCE IN CLIMATE CHANGE COMMUNICATION

Scientists were the first to detect and define climate change; they also have dominated public discourse about the issue. Clearly, they have and continue to play a tremendous role in the communication of climate change. The media con-

tinues to rely on experts as the most important source of factual information (Heinrichs) – albeit typically „balanced“ by a perspective offered by other experts with contrary (and sometimes contrarian) perspectives. The documented result of this journalistic practice – as Boykoff showed – has been the wanting state of public understanding and engagement with the issue, and the stalled political debate in governmental circles. So while scientists will continue to play a big role in communicating climate change, presenters at the 6th Open Meeting suggested that it may be time to broaden the circle of communicators. They also identified the need for a broadened conversation beyond the state of the science and associated uncertainties. Even though the scientific endeavor is driven by the pursuits of knowledge about incompletely understood arenas, the scientific consensus about the reality of climate change, and the human contribution to it, is growing. The deeper debate about response options, the associated trade-offs, and value choices, clearly also requires scientific input, but can and should not remain a scientific debate (e.g., Schneider 2004). In that sort of debate, scientists are not the only ones that have legitimate standing. Several presenters and others in the audience argued that the circle of messengers thus needs to be broadened beyond scientists (as mediated by the media or involved directly). This would imply also a move toward a dialogical notion of communication (not just „delivery“ of information). Examples where such a dialogic notion of communication is already practiced include the village communication and learning centers in Africa, or the agricultural and coastal/marine extension services in the U.S. In short, this shift would imply a move from one-way to twoway conversation, involving fundamental shifts in how we think about and conduct „outreach.“ Such an approach would also enrich the communication content as it would allow the information to be adjusted to better fit in the needs of the recipient audience. It would also allow communicators to deal with queries and misperceptions at an early stage in the communication cycle. SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES BETWEEN DEVELOPED AND DEVELOPING COUNTRIES

The Open Meeting offered a valuable opportunity to begin moving beyond our typical disciplinary and institutional enclaves and to compare notes across national experiences. Even from the limited set of studies represented in our session, we found interesting similarities in communication across EU/US/African contexts. Such similarities include, for example, the common need for creating relevance, for connecting climate change to people’s lives and experiences and to decision-makers’ spheres of influence for the issue to gain salience. In all countries represented by these papers, the important role of experts in and for public discourse was emphasized. Clearly, the challenge of communicating uncertain science, and conveying what science is all about, remains problematic in all regions. At the same time, virtually all papers expressed the need and desirability of moving beyond the sole reliance on experts as communicators, and beyond the one-way information-delivery model of communication so commonly still practiced. IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 19


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Interestingly, across the national contexts represented, there may be interesting gender issues in access to and choice of communication channels, and in processing of received information – issues that should be explored further in future research. Among the interesting differences arising out of the presentations, we would note, for example, the degree of controversy over the state of scientific consensus in Europe and the United States, or the relative importance of various communication channels in developed versus developing countries. In Europe and the US, for example, newspaper and television are among the most important information sources for the public, whereas in southern Africa, radio and informal communication channels play a far greater role. Literacy levels and the availability and affordability of information infrastructure are key determinants of this difference. In Africa, for example, even where literacy levels are high, the reading culture may be poorly developed and access to TV and the internet is limited by low levels of development and poverty. Another interesting difference concerns the scope and reach of the decisions that certain information might inform. Whereas in developed countries decisions based on the information received may be limited to the individual and the immediate family, in developing countries especially in Africa, information is shared widely with individuals throughout a community, especially with influential opinion leaders, elders, local politicians, educated sons and daughters, thus potentially influencing a far larger group. These differences imply different challenges in how, with whom, and what is being communicated, and what impact such communication might have. They also imply different politics surrounding the communication of climate change. For example, visible, „professional“ contrarianism is virtually absent in Africa. MOVING FORWARD

Improving the communication of climate change in ways that can truly facilitate and support societal response to a global challenge such as climate change requires first and foremost specific attention to it. Continuing to talk in the same ways, through the same channels, using the same tried and untrue (i.e., ineffective) frames and mental models, and involving and addressing the same, but limited set of actors, virtually promises slow progress at best. There is growing evidence, for example, that where communicators in the media are exposed to basic science training and information from professional scientists, there is a dramatic shift in the delivery of effective communication (ICPAC/NECJOGHA training workshops in the Greater Horn of Africa & Southern Africa). Moreover, to cross institutional, disciplinary and sciencepractice boundaries requires patience, time, institutional support, willingness, training, and courage among those who would participate in the emerging, broader conversation. While some scientists have a natural talent as communicators, many do not and typically do not receive training to become effective communicators. There is little institutional or financial support to do so. Yet in interdisciplinary and practice-oriented settings, such boundary-crossing opportunities exist, and valuable lessons are being learned. Moreover, social scientists studying communication and social change dynamics can feed critical insights back to their physical and environmental science colleagues. 20 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

Engagement around specific policy challenges, business opportunities, or adaptation needs – in other words, around concrete projects – may also provide arenas well enough defined for participants to open up new channels of communication, to learn to speak and listen, negotiate visions, educate each other, and discover common languages. In short, such opportunities will help to move from information delivery to engaged dialogue and thus help build the necessary trust and social capital essential for embarking on social change. The concreteness of such situations will further help make this abstract „global change“ issue more real and local, and embed climate change in wider sustainability challenges. Some situations may also allow for creative broadening of the array of communication formats to be employed. For example, various art forms – theater, story-telling, song, poetry, and dance – are beginning to address climate change, bringing the scientific issue alive in more engaging, accessible ways that offer meaning and facilitate emotional engagement. Finally, the study of communication (and its effectiveness), and its role in social change has not yet risen to great significance in the international human dimensions research community. Including a wider set of disciplines that contribute to the larger research endeavor and to the understanding of core research priorities (e.g., IT, IDGEC, GECHS, and urbanization) should be a high priority for the IHDP. Research priorities may include but should not be limited to the following: • cross-national comparative case studies of the impacts of communication; • studies of communication effectiveness; • exploration of gender differences in how communication is accessed, received, conducted, and linked to action; • research into the causal linkages between communication and social change; • progress in our understanding of how to connect science more effectively to social institutions of power and influence – such as the media, policy-makers at various levels, businesses, NGOs, and resource managers; and • a better understanding of the political economy that shapes what kind of conversation about climate change is being or can be had, who is and who isn’t heard, and why it is so difficult to change these conditions. We thank the presenters and the audience of our session for lively discussion and for raising some of the important issues raised in this summary. S USANNE C. M OSER is a Research Scientist with the Institute for the Study of Society and Environment at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, USA; smoser@ucar.edu; www.ncar.ucar.edu PATRICK LUGANDA is a Journalist and Chairman of the Network of Climate Journalists in the Greater Horn of Africa (NECJOGHA), Kampala, Uganda; and member of the ICPACIGAD Climate Prediction and Applications Center, Nairobi, Kenya; patrick_luganda@yahoo.com References: www.ihdp.org/updateom05/references.html


6 th Open Meeting

HUMAN SECURIT Y: GENDER

GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE, GENDER AND HUMAN SECURITY B Y L IVIA B IZIKOVA 1 AND S URUCHI B HADWAL ➤ Gender

perspectives on global environmental change are highly relevant to research in human security, yet few initiatives have been undertaken to identify gender-differentiated contributions, impacts and responses to global environmental change. Although it has been well documented that gender mediates the use of environment through gender roles, responsibilities, expectations, norms, and the division of labour, there has been relatively little research on how vulnerability to environmental change, coping capacity, and adaptive capacity are gendered (Seager and Hartmann, 2004). Drawing together different perspectives, this panel will serve as the foundation of a larger research project that combines the insights of an integrated analysis of local and regional human security and a gender analysis, to illuminate the real-world dimensions of vulnerability to global environmental change. Livia Bizikova and Suruchi Bhadwal were the co-organizers of this panel session. Joni Seager (York University, Toronto) explored the inadequacy of gendered data and indicators within the UN system, in particular UNEP, and presented the results of one project to bring gender into the work of the agency. Suruchi Bhadwal (TERI, New Delhi) highlighted the strong impacts that globalization and macro-scale processes of change have on the livelihoods of poor communities in India, and in particular on the women of these communities. Minu Hemmati, together with her co-author Ulrike Roehr (both Genanet, Frankfurt) focused on gender aspects of climate change relevant do developed countries. Livia Bizikova (AIRD, University of British Columbia, Vancouver) gave a presentation on the gender dimension of climate change mitigation and adaptation in transition countries. S.H.M. Fakhruddin (CEGIS, Bangladesh) presented a study on gender-differentiated coping mechanisms and vulnerabilities in the coastal zone of Bangladesh. Macro-scale physical processes influence livelihoods of many dependent on these resources for a living. Strong linkages exist between the physical and the social dimension of the earth’s system, with changes in one influencing the other critically. Although many studies have sought to explore the impact of environmental changes on communities, the gendered aspect to vulnerability of these macro-scale processes has seldom been explored. Exposure to changes in climate, globalization, or soil degradation induces differential impacts on gender, posing serious concerns. Gender inequalities, both in the North and the South, are rooted in existing gender roles and attitudes that have strong social, economic and environmental implications. These inequalities, however, tend to be very site-specific and require a close and careful elaboration of the local conditions. Apart from huge gender disparities in developing countries, differences can also be observed in industrialized countries and in countries of transition. The issues revolve around differential decision-making abilities, differing roles and responsibilities in terms of access to

resources and benefits, as well as institutional support and available opportunities. Gender disparities in industrialized countries are grouped around lower participation of women in decision-making, wage gaps, vertical and horizontal segregation of men and women in the economy, gender roles in care economy, genderspecific types of violence, feminization of poverty and so on (Hemmati, Roehr). While in transition countries the attention towards gender inequalities and the attempts to balance them are becoming a part of policy development the experience of these countries also reveals new dimensions of gender inequalities such as access to land, re-appearance of the typical women’s and men’s role due to the state’s withdrawal from caring activities, as well as stronger gender segregation in specific occupational types (Bizikova). In case of countries in the South, however, the situation is more precarious. Characteristic gender disparities in the South are differential allocations of wages, physical abuse and violence, exploitation by those in powerful positions as women are rendered helpless, outward migration with huge consequences on health resulting in spread of infectious diseases e.g., AIDS and other health impacts – posing problems of malnutrition, maternal death and spread of epidemics, stalled education and low female literacy rates, as well as reduced empowerment and decisionmaking abilities. While rural-urban migration of men, in many cases, is directly linked to environmental degradation, it is often the women who stay behind under grim conditions (lack of clean water, poor soil, exposure to drought and floods, starvation, as well as lack of adequate protection and mitigation from natural hazards in general) (Bhadwal). Underneath potential climate change related measures, the different gender roles, incongruities and attitudes are hidden. At the general level, the principal determinant of a society’s capacity to adapt to change is likely to be access to resources. This is determined by entitlements that are often the product of external political factors and processes operating at the super-national scale but that have consequences at the subnational level (Adger et al., 2004). International trade and multilateral agreements that influence national economic policies are good examples. Poverty, inequality, isolation and marginalization can all undermine the entitlements of individuals and groups, but the inequality between women and men within a given society or community often is higher than inequalities between the specific groups or communities. For example, the average wage differences between men and women in developing countries as well as within the EU are higher than differences between average wages across countries. Therefore, taking into account gender disparities makes studied processes, trends and indicators less homogenous by involving different societal needs and values. 1 Opinions expressed in this paper are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Environment Canada.

IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 21


6 th Open Meeting

Photo: Courtesy of World Bank

HUMAN SECURIT Y: GENDER

The divergence between approaches, both top-down and bottom-up, and their capability to grasp gender inequalities, has significant impacts. In case of top-down approaches, issues such as equal representation of women in the whole process of policy preparation could be a challenge. Bottom-up approaches on the other hand provide significant information on Capacity Building of Rural Indian the measures required for adapting Woman to and mitigating the effects of climate change, highlighting the necessity of climate change related measures to be tailored for local needs (Klein et al. 2003). As adaptation strategies reflect the dynamics of peoples’ livelihoods, adaptation must be seen as a process that is itself adaptive and flexible to address locally specific and changing circumstances (IISD, 2003). This also allows challenging gender roles and attitudes by re-assessing current livelihoods from a perspective of future strategies, and in this way avoid maintaining the status quo in gender disparities or even further deepening of gender inequalities. Therefore, only with multi-scale analysis involving gender sensitive approaches can the full nature of equity and empowerment issues be exposed (cf. Beg et al., 2002), allowing particular attention to be paid to supporting strategies that will secure livelihoods and aid poverty reduction, in addition to enhancing our understanding of equity issues. Case studies provide an excellent way to peep into and capture the micro-scale dimensions of gender-based impacts and vulnerabilities associated with changes in the global climate. Based on these studies carried out at the local level, the impacts on women and their lowered capacities in responding effectively to the sofelt consequences are increasingly realized. One of the consequences of climate change related events is the change in frequency and intensity of extreme weather events including droughts and floods. The gendered aspects of vulnerability to these macro-scale processes have hardly been taken into account. Especially in developing countries, in many contexts, men are better connected with early warning mechanisms due to their movement in public space and access to formal and informal channels of communication; e.g. radio, TV, informal community networks and interaction with officials. Therefore, capacity building to increase the potentials to cope with disasters requires gender specific approaches. In drought-affected regions, numerous women toil under severe conditions, in addition to having to cater to the immediate needs of their children. Reduced labour and cheap wages during these periods has further significant impacts on the household income. Under acute circumstances, cases of malnutrition and consequent deaths are report22 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

ed. Death during child-birth is also common during such times. In case of floods, women are affected more by the spread of epidemics, as basic hygiene precaution cannot be maintained. During both droughts and floods the school drop-out rates of girls is very high. Examples are cited from case studies in India and Bangladesh in this context (Bhadwal, Fakhruddin). Gender-specific response measures and coping strategies to various vulnerabilities can be observed. Cited specifically in the context of Bangladesh, women family members in different parts of the coastal zone were found to be involved with various kinds of activities that can support the households in critical periods. Growing livestock (poultry, goats etc.), homestead gardening, cottage industries, minor financial savings and so forth are amongst the major coping measures. Men, on the other hand, were found to rely more on external supports (money lenders, adjustment/negotiation of the market prices in accord with other farmers) (Fakhruddin). By considering impacts on gender in proposed steps to enhance the resilience of communities to cope effectively with climate variability and change, gender disparities can be reduced. Care must be taken to implement non-conflicting procedures that are in alliance with the sustainable development goals. For example, measures to increase carbon sequestration such as reforestation and afforestation could be in conflict with subsistence farming (women’s tasks) and related health impacts from changes in diet on women and their children, no availability of off-farm work (if the proposed measure requires less-intensive labour force) and potential increase of women in the informal sector (Bizikova). To be able to prevent losses during disasters, the role of women needs to be recognized, and they have to become more actively engaged in the risk reduction process. Gender mainstreaming can encourage ownership of the process and thus reduce associated risks. In order to better cope with negative impacts, increased representation of women at decision-making level, changes in landownership status, and gender-sensitive adaptation measures have to be part of the climate change measures. Gender-conscious approaches should be adopted in risk management efforts to cope effectively with disasters particularly at the community level. Gender-differentiated coping mechanisms and vulnerability assessments will increase capacity of men and women to live more safely in hazard-prone environments, increase women’s access to resources (including financial resources), and foster a transition to a more sustainable society less exposed to the vagaries of changing weather conditions. In order to successfully introduce gender sensitive methods of problem analysis and impact assessment, women have to be empowered at the decision-making level. This will also lead to better gender-responsive and participatory development policies. L IVIA B IZIKOVA is Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Adaptation and Impact Research Division (AIRD), The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada; lbizikova@ires.ubc.ca; www.ubc.ca S URUCHI B HADWAL is Area Convenor and Associate Fellow with the Centre for Global Environment Research, TERI, New Delhi, India; suruchib@teri.res.in; www.teriin.org References: www.ihdp.org/updateom05/references.html


6 th Open Meeting

I N S T I T U T I O N A L D I M E N S I O N S : WAT E R M A N AG E M E N T

THE COMPLEX DYNAMICS OF TRANSBOUNDARY WATER MANAGEMENT B Y A MY L. L OVECRAFT ➤ Amy Lovecraft and Tun Myint co-chaired a panel entitled „Local, Regional, and International Institutions to Reduce Conflict and Increase Capacity for Restoration, Protection, and Usage of Transboundary Waters.“ The session was located in the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change section of the conference. Both Amy Lovecraft (University of Alaska Fairbanks) and Tun Myint (University of Indiana Bloomington) are Research Fellows with the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change. Their panel sought to bring together institutional research on bodies of water which are transnational in location. Recent estimates note that 263 of the world’s rivers are shared by two or more countries, and these transboundary watersheds account for at least 60% of the world’s freshwater and some 40% of the world’s people (Gerlak, 2004). As human understanding of the natural world has expanded, it has become apparent that the boundary lines of maps, while often drawn around natural formations such as mountain ranges, desert edges, or rivers, have become political artifacts when trying to manage the ecology of most natural resources. These realizations by the public and governing agencies have sparked growth and change in international boundary diplomacy and administration. The presentations in the session achieved three goals related to analysis of internationally shared waters. First, as a group the cases of transboundary relationships and their current governance mechanisms at multiple scales represented over a dozen affected countries. Second, the papers evaluated the potential of current and proposed institutions to reduce conflict and increase capacity for achieving resilient ecosystems and sustainable water goals. The different cases covered a broad spectrum from new institutions, such as those just developing in Central Asia, to long established relationships such as those along the Rhine in Europe. Thirdly, the papers covered several methodologies from the development of institutional recommendations based on mathematical models, to in-depth policy history, to Young’s (2002) fit, interplay and scale. Due to these attributes the session audience was able to learn about a diverse array of transboundary water arrangements. The session was crowded, with six presenters, but nonetheless a question and answer period followed. This review of the session will now briefly recount each paper presented and follow up with some of the major summary lessons. Grace Koshida (Environment Canada) made the first presentation, called „Drought Risk Management in Canada-U.S. Transboundary Watersheds: Now and in the Future.“ Her work examined the significant hazard of drought to both Canada and the United States. As demand for water increases in North America so does the potential for conflict in the shared watersheds between the two countries. Koshida’s talk presented the social and ecological vulnerabilities that accompany the threat of drought in the Okanagan, Poplar, Red, and Great Lakes Basins. Droughts have multiple effects on any given ecosystem. For example, they can affect forest fire potential and species’

survival but also have public health aspects related to safe drinking water. She discussed how drought risk has been managed historically and her work gave an in-depth descriptive history of each of the institutions present in each basin. Through the presentation it became clear that climate change and increasing population pressures will play a major role in the future availability of water for this region. The next presentation, by Carmen Maganda (University of California, San Diego) headed south and addressed the waters shared between cities in the states of California, United States and Baja Calfornia, Mexico. Her work, entitled „Competition for the Water Resources of the Colorado River in Southern California: The Case of San Diego vs. Imperial Valley“, stemmed from her doctoral research exploring how transboundary waters are administered (managed, planned, and assigned) for growing cities sharing water resources. Her presentation compared the regional competition between authorities in the San Diego metropolitan area, and those in Imperial Valley for the distribution of water from the Colorado River. The impact of the recently signed Imperial Valley-San Diego water agreement has had negative collateral effects on Mexican users of the Colorado River, such as an inability to draw needed water during dry seasons, due to the asymmetrical power relationship between northern and southern parties. She argued that her study demonstrates that local elites will continue to behave in self-interested ways, and create unsustainable policies, unless bi-national institutions are better designed to restrain all parties which rely on a shared resource. The third presentation, by Sabine Moellenkamp (University of Osnabrück) took the panel to Europe for „Sharing the Rhine River: Transboundary Cooperation on Multiple Scales and in a Changing Institutional Environment.“ While a multitude of cooperative arrangements on several scales have evolved among the nine countries sharing the Rhine, Moellenkamp’s presentation focused on the development of the German and French partnership. Germany has a federal system while France has centralized water agencies and their systems communicate about the Rhine primarily through the International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine. Although their relationship can be constrained by differing legal systems and attitudes towards the environment, there have been positive ecological effects from their cooperation. Her focus was on how these two countries have implemented the European Water Framework Directive (WFD), which is mandatory throughout the European Union. The new WFD, and its eco-regional approach, has created new structures that make the governance of the Rhine more complex as multiple stakeholders and agencies must be included. However, she argued, the relationship between Germany and France for managing the Rhine has improved; so much so that salmon have returned. Taras Samborsky (Moscow State University) presented a detailed mathematical model about shaping the future of IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 23


6 th Open Meeting

I N S T I T U T I O N A L D I M E N S I O N S : WAT E R M A N AG E M E N T

shared water use institutions among several countries in Central Asia. His talk, „The Theoretical Model of Optimal Division of Water Recourses Between Different Countries of Central Asia“, discussed how sharing waters is complicated by the political, economic, and social problems of Khazakhstan, Kirghizstan, Tajhikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. He offered a theoretical model of optimal division of water recourses for these Central Asian countries. The model was based on the principles of the market economy, which are rather new for these postSoviet republics. The main instrument of the model was a total economical effect of water recourse utilization as a function of quantity and quality of water used during a calculation period. Every country, region or district is considered to be a participant of the market and can buy or sell some part of quote for the water utilization and pollution. The model determines the optimum strategy and gives the possibility to reach maximum profit. The model can be used for the scientific substantiation of quotes and expenses for the ecological monitoring and protection. The successful realization of Samborsky’s model may present opportunities for the normalization of the political situation in Central Asia as well as guiding economically effective and ecologically safe utilization of water recourses there, as well as in other regions of the world. „Institutional Mechanisms for Conflict Resolution and Water Cooperation: An Assessment of the Indo-Bangladesh Joint Rivers Commission“ was presented fifth by Monirul Mirza (Institute for Environmental Studies, Toronto). He noted that a large number of rivers are shared by India and Bangladesh, as well as their neighbors, creating a complex policy environment due to diverse interests and ecological conditions. For example, the amount of dry season water available in these rivers is not enough to meet demands of both countries for agriculture, river regulation, navigation, industrial and domestic water requirements, etc. On the other hand, during the monsoon, Bangladesh is often engulfed by floods generated in the upstream areas beyond its border. Mirza’s focus in his presentation was on the institutional relationship between India and Bangladesh addressing the particular problems of resolving water sharing in the Ganges River and mitigating flood hazards. In other words, the region’s water „problems“ are of both excess and scarcity. The Indo-Bangladesh Joint Rivers Commission (JRC) was created in 1973. The talk presented an overall assessment of the scope of the JRC, the roles it played in fostering water cooperation and its limitations. While the JRC has evolved as an institution and has the potential, depending on political trends, to greatly benefit the region, he argued that the records of the negotiations show that because of its limitations in scope and executive power, political interventions have been required to really jumpstart water agreements. The presentation also demonstrated that the scope of the JRC should not be limited to water sharing but should also be expanded to include other areas of cooperation such as ecosystem and water quality management and non-navigational uses of water. The final presenter was Louis Lebel (Chiang Mai University, Thailand). His ongoing work analysing institutions for water resources in Vietnam was presented as „The Politics of Scale, Position and Place in the Management of Water Resources in the Mekong Region.“ Lebel utilized Oran Young’s institutional methodology of fit, interplay, and scale to evaluate the appropri24 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

ateness of the scales for science, management and decision-making in the Mekong waters. He argued that these features of an institution cannot be unambiguously derived from physical characteristics of water resources. His talk explained how scales are a joint product of social and biophysical processes. As such, the politics of scale metaphor has been helpful in drawing attention to the ways in which scale choices are constrained overtly by politics and more subtly by choices of technologies, institutional designs and measurements. But at the same time, the scale metaphor has been stretched to cover a lot of different spatial relationships. Lebel argued in his presentation that there are benefits for understanding and action of distinguishing issues of scale from those of place and position. He illustrated this with examples from the management and politics of water resources in the Mekong region where key scientific information is often limited to a few sources. The key effective institutional management will be to shift water politics in the Mekong region from a technocratic and coercive mode fearful of citizens and science into a more integrated and deliberative mode open to greater public participation in decision-making about individual water resource development projects. In summary, these excellent presentations conveyed four important points related to transboundary water management. First, the use of water resources shift over time as ecological conditions as well as user populations change. This means that institutions must be flexible in design, or at least open to amendment, so that new circumstances do not mean depletion of resources. Koshida’s work effectively demonstrated how even between friendly post-industrial neighbors issues of water scarcity may drive conflict in the coming decades. Perhaps even new institutions may need to develop when older ones are unable to adapt their legal or technical style to a particular problem. Second, culture and power relationships cannot be ignored as key variables contributing to the capacity of institutional success. Each of the presentations contained this thread but Maganda’s and Mirza’s works showed just how important political prestige and national financial resources can be to institutional creation and implementation respectively. Third, perceptions toward the water resources themselves will play a role both in institutional design as well as how existing national and subnational structures view their relationship(s) to the water institutions. Moellenkamp’s presentation of how two European Union neighbors can still have very different cultural relationships with the same river as well as Lebel’s stress on the need for the inclusion of citizen-driven information about a resource are excellent examples of this concept. Finally, each author’s contribution demonstrates the importance of understanding how institutions, as sets of rules and practices, change (or do not change) the behaviors of water users from the local to the international. A MY L OVECRAFT is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, USA; http://www.iser. uaa.alaska.edu; http://www2.bren.ucsb.edu/~idgec/about/ fellows/lovecraft.html T UN M YINT is a Research Fellow at the University of Indiana, Bloomington, USA; http://www.research.iu.edu/centers/ wptpa.html; http://www2.bren.ucsb.edu/~idgec/about/ fellows/myint.html


6 th Open Meeting LAND

„HANDING OVER“ – FROM LUCC TO GLP B Y G EGOR L AUMANN the many activities synthesizing the results of the LUCC (Land-Use and Land-Cover Change) project during the 6th Open Meeting in Bonn in October 2005, there was also a roundtable to hand over its very subject matter to the newly established Global Land Project. Already in 2003, the Scientific Steering Committee of LUCC started to prepare a review of tasks and activities to be implemented along the lines of the six LUCC Science Questions: 1) How has land cover been changed by human use over the last 300 years? 2) What are the major human causes of land-cover change in different geographical and historical contexts? 3) How will changes in land use affect land cover in the next 50-100 years? 4) How do immediate human and biophysical dynamics affect the sustainability of specific types of land uses? 5) How might changes in climate and global biogeochemistry affect both land use and land cover? 6) How do land uses and land covers affect the vulnerability of land-users in the face of change and how do land-cover changes in turn impinge upon and enhance vulnerable and at-risk or critical regions? In this connection, the question was raised of what remained to be taken up by the new Global Land Project. It became obvious that the LUCC research questions 1) – 5) could be fairly well addressed in the final synthesis (see LUCC section in this report), though research questions 4) and 5) needed revision and further actions in the then remaining two years lifetime of the project. A review of LUCC research question number 6) revealed, however, that it could not be addressed fully and to a satisfactory degree by the LUCC synthesis. It should therefore be considered part of the LUCC heritage to be dealt with in more detail by the new Global Land Project. A review of the vulnerability theme explained why the exposure-sensitivity-coping capacity framework was still con-

sidered rewarding, but should be handed over to the Land Project. Accepting this recommendation, the Global Land Project rephrased it as one of its three major cornerstones of Theme 3 in the Science Plan: „How do the vulnerability and resilience of land systems to hazards and disturbances vary in response to changes in the human-environment interactions“. The LUCC SSC gave some main arguments for exploration beyond the current state of knowledge. The current framework (exposure-sensitivity-coping capacity) needs to be extended to include the minimization of risk through diversification and the risk/migration nexus. This includes, for example, risk-taking behaviour in land use, the role of urbanization and remittances, or the role of insurance and credit policies. Also, the local context needs to be better integrated so that, for example, household decisions can be incorporated in those approaches trying to understand which local land use strategies minimize or maximize risk. Finally, quantifications of vulnerability should be aimed for wherever possible, but the heterogeneity of actors and uses within a place suggests avoiding any large-scale quantification of vulnerability at the regional level. These recommendations where part of the input provided to a very well attended „handover-session“ from Eric Lambin, Chair of the LUCC SSC to Richard Aspinall and Dennis Ojima, the interim Co-chairs of the newly constituted GLP SSC, on 11 October 2005 in Bonn, Germany. Richard Aspinall and Dennis Ojima presented the GLP science framework and subsequently faced the critical questions and constructive input of a distinguished audience of international scholars interested in land science. They invited all members of the LUCC community to continue staying involved with the new GLP and help ensuring continuity from the many scientific achievements of LUCC, which became so obvious those days. G REGOR L AUMANN is International Science Project Coordinator at the IHDP Secretariat, Bonn, Germany; laumann.ihdp@unibonn.de

Photo by Ulrike Klopp

➤ Among

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6 th Open Meeting

PRE-OPEN MEETING TRAINING SEMINARS

THE PRE-OPEN MEETING TRAINING SEMINARS TRAINING SEMINARS ON METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES RELATED TO THE HUMAN DIMENSIONS OF GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE ➤IHDP, in collaboration with co-organizing partners of the 6th

Open Meeting decided to take concerted effort to use this unique opportunity for the systematic promotion of young scientists, particularly those from developing and emerging economies from all regions of the world, to interact, crosslink, and exchange information on various aspects of global change. Four Pre-Open Meeting Training Seminars took place from October 6-8, 2005 in Königswinter, Germany. These capacity building activities focused on methodological issues related to research questions on the human dimensions of global environmental change, with topics linked to the IHDP core science projects and the Earth-System-Science joint projects. These seminars were not only held to develop concrete skills and give state-of-the-art information and knowledge about the topics in question, but also to enhance collaboration and networking between the young researchers and the broad Global Environmental Change research community. To foster integration with the core science projects of IHDP, key scientists linked to the IHDP networks volunteered to take up the training mandate for three days. The four training seminars proofed to be an exiting and challenging interactive exercise, and enabled young researchers from all over the world to meet with top researchers to learn from each other and feel inspired for further collaboration. 1) Training Seminar on Urbanization and Global Environmental Change Trainers: Frauke Kraas, University of Cologne, Germany, and Roberto Sánchez, University of California, Riverside, USA Co-Trainers: William Solecki, Hunter College, City University of New York, USA; Karen Seto, Stanford University, USA; David Simon, Centre for Developing Areas Research (CEDAR), University of London, UK This group aimed at a better understanding of the interactions and feedbacks between global environmental change and urbanization at the local, regional, and global scales. It followed a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary perspective. The trainers introduced innovative conceptual and methodological approaches. The four thematic foci of the seminar covered the array of interaction between the urban and the global environment components of the Earth system. It started with processes within the urban system that contribute to global environment change. A second focus was put on the pathways through which specific global environmental changes affect the urban system. It also addressed the resulting interactions and responses within the urban system. Finally, it dealt with interactions within the urban system on global environmental 26 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

change, or feedback processes. These four thematic foci create a comprehensive perspective of the dynamic, diverse, and complex interactions between urban systems and global environmental change processes. The topics of this training seminar stretched from biophysical processes across global socioeconomic changes to urbanization and health issues. Trainers and participants looked at case studies from all over the world, discussed potential interlinkages for interdisciplinary research approaches and tried to position their own research activities within the IHDP networks in order to benefit from already existing research activities and results. 2) Understanding Vulnerability to Global Environmental Change in the Context of Globalization Trainers: Karen O’Brien, University of Oslo, Norway; Janos Bogardi, United Nations University – Institute for Environment and Human Security, Bonn, Germany, and Claudia Pahl-Wostl, University of Osnabrück, Germany Co-Trainers: Eric Crasswell and Marcel Endejan, Global Water System Project Office, Bonn, Germany; Michael Bollig, University of Cologne, Germany; Jörn Birkmann, United Nations University – Institute for Environment and Human Security, Bonn, Germany; Sabine Möllenkamp, University of Osnabrück, Germany This training seminar was tightly focused around understanding and assessing human vulnerability from the perspective of various discourses, using a range of methodologies, in light of a host of competing stresses. Particular emphasis was placed on the themes of water (both abundance and scarcity under global environmental change) and the context of globalization. The course content was delivered through a variety of means, including formal lectures, group activities, role playing and group discussions. There was general agreement that vulnerability is a dynamic concept related to multiple processes, but the precise definition of vulnerability and appropriate methodologies for measuring it (or, indeed, the appropriateness of measuring it) were extensively debated by participants. Among other activities, Karen O’Brien asked the participants to step outside their pre-conceived notions of how they think about the concept and assigned them to work within various discourses (biophysical, human-environment, critical and transformational globalization) to both explain and propose solutions to a large-scale human and environmental disaster, the impact of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans. This example managed to illustrate many of the recurring themes of the workshop: Multiple stresses, nested scales, the role of institutions, political discourse, uneven development, the role of technology, human security and the idea of „winners and losers“. These themes were further explored in subsequent exer-


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cises led by other facilitators to give participants an appreciation of the many voices and challenges of vulnerability assessment in various contexts. As a whole, the training seminar, as well as the Open Meeting that followed, provided a broad overview of recent research findings and advances in the conceptualization of various aspects of the interactive effects of human security and the natural environment in the context of global environmental change and globalization. The new contextual and conceptual frameworks in which the otherwise much explored research topics were situated provided a stimulus for reconsidering old problems and approaches for addressing them from a new perspective. 3) Analysis of Spatial Data for Human Dimensions Research – User Workshop Trainers: Alex de Sherbinin and Adam Storeygard, CIESIN at Columbia University, USA; Günther Menz, Matthias Braun and Hans Peter Thamm, University of Bonn, Germany.

This seminar was conducted through the collaboration of several institutions, each one of them providing a particular focus of expertise. Thus the trainers managed to cover two differing main topics in the realm of spatial data for human dimensions research, i.e. spatial statistics, and remote sensing and land-use/land-cover change (LUCC). The institutions involved in this training seminar were the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) and the Population-Environment Research Network (PERN) at Columbia University, as well as the Center for Remote Sensing of Land Surfaces, University of Bonn. 4) Training Seminar on Economic Methods for Global Environmental Change Research Trainer: Gernot Klepper, Institute for World Economics, Kiel, Germany Co-Trainers: Sonja Peterson and Manfred Wiebelt, Institute for World Economics, Kiel, Germany. In this training seminar the students were introduced to the most common methods for modeling economic aspects from a regional to the worldwide scale. Particular lectures were about different approaches to modeling economic processes in relation to environmental change and political scenarios. Different methods were shown in theory and examples, including the general equilibrium model (GEM) to evaluate different scenarios to deforestation and political decisions (in the case of Cameroon), as well as partial models. In addition, data requirements to build economic models were discussed, and the social accounting matrix (SAM) method was presented. Each student talked about personal experiences and research problems, and all participants evaluated alternative approaches for specifics problems in an interactive session. Problems presented for the students included deforestation by soybean expansion, fishery and fish population fluctuation in relationship to climate change, individual decisions in different economic contexts, as well as sector impacts in relationship to climate change or policies.

This training seminar provided hands-on technology tools training for the analysis of spatial data. The seminar focused on the use of geographic information systems (GIS), remote sensing and statistical software with training on ArcMap, Erdas and GeoDa respectively. It was particularly useful to use examples from developing countries concentrating on global, regional (Africa) and local (Benin) scales of analysis. Topics addressed during the seminar included cartographic representation & modeling, land-use & land-cover change (LUCC), and spatial correlation analysis. This seminar proved to be a very useful (and quite unusual) integrated training on several techniques that are usually approached separately. Furthermore, the discussion of research problems in a multidisciplinary audience gave the chance to understand and solve problems with a variety of perspectives. The first part of the seminar focused on global data sets and the deconstruction of those explaining the way in which these were developed, the way in which selected Eastern Europe variables answer a parLatin Americas ticular research quesCentral Europe tion, variables development, etc. The second part focused on regional and local study cases in Africa (the whole continent and Benin), as well as on the need to understand which variAfrica ables from a global dataset would answer South East Asia questions at the local USA/Canada level, and which techniques were more suitable for this type of Diagramme 1: Distribution of the training seminar participants’ area of residence analysis.

ACTIVE INVOLVEMENT OF YOUNG SCHOLARS FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD

IHDP managed to invite 60 young scholars to join into this capacity building event and to also stay on for the 6th Open Meeting in Bonn due to the generous support of the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) and its CAPaBLE Programme, the

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TRAINING SEMINARS / UNU-EHS

Inter-American Instistrategy for fostering tute for Global Change young human dimenResearch (IAI), the sions researchers from Center for Internationall over the world to al Earth Science Inforactively participate in mation Network the world largest social (CIESIN), the SysTem science conference on for Analysis, Research, global environmental and Training (START), change issues. This the United Nations consolidated active University (UNU), the involvement of young Norwegian Research scientists has been Council, the University generally acknowlof Cologne, the Kiel edged by all conferInstitute for World ence participants and Economics and the was a crucial factor for Foundation „Internathe spirit of a truly tional Encounters“ of international, interdisthe savings bank ciplinary science conCologne/Bonn. ference grasping on The distribution of the human dimensions Training Seminar on Spatial Data participant’s area of of global environmenresidence demontal change. strates the truly international character of this exercise (see diagramme 1). Organizing this capacity building event backOrganizer of the Training Seminars: to-back with the 6th Open Meeting proofed to be a successful Ike Holtmann, IHDP Secretariat, Bonn, Germany

MEASURING THE UNMEASURABLE 2nd UNU-EHS EXPERT WORKING GROUP MEETING ON MEASURING VULNERABILITY ➤ The

UNU-EHS Expert Working Group (EWG) met for a second time during the 6th Open Meeting, following up on its inaugural meeting in Kobe, Japan in January 2005. The second meeting was larger, welcoming representatives from a variety of German planning and development assistance institutions, partners from on-going field research in Russia and Sri Lanka, as well as a number of young scientists. The title of the meeting „Measuring the Unmeasurable“ was provocative and stimulating. Dealing with the concept of „vulnerability“ across a range of disciplines concerned with sustainable human development, risk reduction, and human security in operational terms is a challenge. At one extreme, vulnerability is a fundamental characteristic of human existence, where intersubjectivity reveals the dependence of each individual on others and the individual’s proneness to loss, injury, and abandonment. At this pole of reflection on the phenomenon of vulnerability, the social sciences come close to their philosophical limits, and the „data“ are qualitative. At the other extreme, vulnerability may be defined by climate science, engineering, or economics as the propensity to specific, measurable negative effects or impacts. The quanta may be narrowly defined (as soil moisture and crop yields, a building’s behavior under seismic stress, or money). One way of representing this continuum of ways to comprehend vul-

28 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

nerability is provided in a background document used in the Working Group meeting (see www.ehs.unu.edu) The disciplinary breadth of the participants was very large, a fact that enriched the discussions. Integration of reports of ongoing research work in Sri Lanka following the December 2004 tsunami, flooding in Russia, and pre-disaster planning in Tanzania, Central America, and South Africa helped to center and focus so many wide ranging points of view. An enormous number of fresh insights came out of the deliberations. These ran the full gamut from the use of qualitative methods such as story telling to capture perceptions of risk and vulnerability to fully quantitative methods involving remote sensing and econometrics. In the end, however, everyone seemed to agree that the way forward in making the concept of vulnerability useful in development, risk reduction, and human security lies in answering some fundamental questions: Measurement of vulnerability to what? Through what? By whom? For whom? To achieve what? A report of the second meeting of the UNU-EHS’ Expert Working Group „Measuring Vulnerability“ is in preparation and will be published early 2006. For orders please contact Ilona Roberts, UNU-EHS, Goerresstrasse 15, 53113 Bonn.


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IHDP NATIONAL COMMITTEE SCIENCE AT THE 6 th OPEN MEETING B Y D EBRA M EYER-W EFERING IHDP NC Mexico/IHDP NC USA, “Urbanization: A TwoWay Lane – Cities as Drivers and Targets of Climate Change”: Cities are contradictory drivers of development. On the one hand they are centers of key activities inducing transformations of the carbon cycle and the climate system (e.g. transportation). They have an ecological footprint extending to distant and remote places. Furthermore they are targets of the impacts of climate change. It is therefore difficult for city managers and stakeholders to even comprehend both cities’ impacts on the carbon cycle, and cities´ vulnerabilities to climate change. On the other hand, cities are centers of cultural opportunities, and changing lifestyles capable to induce transformations in development that can contribute both to decarbonization of our societies, and to enhance our adaptive capacities. The IHDP Mexican National Committee, the US Committee on the Human Dimensions of Global Change, the IPCC and the Global Carbon Project, supported this session, on cities as drivers and targets of climate change. The paper from IHDP NC Mexico, “How do Local Governments Manage Global Issues? Governance of GHG Emissions in Mexico City”, Patricia Romero Lankao (Chair) explored some factors explaining accomplishments, difficulties and challenges facing authorities and other actors managing carbon emissions in Mexico City. She found that local regimes have worked as learning facilitators. City actors recognize linkages among emissions, urbanization and transportation, and include more scales (global and local) in their framing. This and other positive results do not warranty an effective management of emissions. For authorities face institutional constraints, e.g. lack of coordination among three tiers of government. Cities’ emissions trajectories are driven by other factors operating at global scales in space and through time. For example, reduced governmental investment in public transportation has contributed to a shift in mode share from metro and buses to minibuses and low capacity modes, leading to increased emissions. (For further information on this session and papers presented, contact Patricia Romero-Lankao, Chair IHDP NC Mexico, prlankao@correo.xoc.uam.mx, and Thomas Wilbanks, Chair USHDGC, wilbankstj@ornl.gov) IHDP NC Nepal, “Institutional Interplay on the Environment and Resource Regime of Central Himalayan Mountains: Study on Nepal”: After the end of World War II many nations underwent political transformation and a new world order began to emerge. Rapid economic and technological development was the main theme for these underdeveloped countries left behind by the industrialized world. The central Himalayan mountain region also got the message to move along with the new world order. As a result a new paradigm for environmental and resource regime began to emerge. A multiplicity of institutions began to operate at the local, regional and national levels. Traditional institutions got diluted by the externally

implanted institutions and often worked at cross-purposes. Furthermore, each institution tried to emerge as a complete self, causing lack of coordination among the sectoral institutions as well as the traditional village councils. This region is characterized with complex environmental and resource regimes in fragmented and diverse socio-economic units. With the degree of development the degree of vulnerability also has been increased many fold. However, there are some success stories too. A historical review on the institutional dimension of development efforts in Nepal of the past six decades has been carried out. The driving force behind the growth and transformation of institutions, the role and effectiveness thereof and the impact to the environment and resource regime of this central Himalayan Mountain Region, Nepal, was critically analyzed. Observations from Sharad Adhikary (Member, IHDP NC Nepal) concluded that the centralized political and economical establishment of the country neglected the role of local communities and their traditional practices and thus gave birth to numerous conflict situations such as: a) resource use (optimization problem), b) external encroachment to the natural resources local communities being exploited economically, c) cultural invasion – disruption of cultural and age-old transitions, d) feeling of incompetence or incapable among the local people, and e) disruption of localized economic structures and thus deepening of economic crises including recession of products. Furthermore multiple donors gave rise to multiple institutions often working on cross-purposes including disruption and continuity. (For further information on this paper presented, contact Sharad Adhikary, Member IHDP NC Nepal, adhikary@yahoo.com, himac@mos.com.np) IHDP NC Nigeria/IHDP NC Cameroon, “Urbanization in West Africa: Patterns, Processes, and Implications for Land Use and Land Cover”: Urbanization, as a complex process of social change and is progressing unabated in most of the developing countries. It is characterized by the creation of large urban centers - either by migration, temporary and/or permanent settlements of workers, or workers-to-be in towns. These are particularly visible in the seventeen countries that constitute the West African subregion. For example, a cursory look at the various statistical details for these countries attests to the stupendous growth in population over the past 20 years, with devastating consequences in the face of bad governance, inept administration and large-scale corruption. This has led to the large-scale abandonment of rural areas, the transposition of rural for urban poverty and the deleterious affects of these for food security in the region. As if this were not enough and as a result of demand for land for various purposes resulting from urbanization, there has been serious pressure on the existing facilities and infrastructure within cities. Most of the agricultural land within and at the fringe of the city has been converted to either residential plots or commercial centers legally and illegally. These IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 29


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Photo by Thomas Mauersberg

N AT I O N A L CO M M I T T E E S

have reduced the food supply to the city, especially vegetables and staple foods. It is thus apparent that the social, economic and environmental consequences of land-use change present significant challenges to rural and urban populations in many parts of West Africa. It is recognized that land-use change impacts in very different ways on different countries and communities in the region, but that there are some common principles for effectively managing change, which this session sought to address. A case study for Nigeria was presented by IHDP NC Nigeria, “Globalization and the Role of Multinational Corporations in Land-Use and Land-Cover Changes in the Niger Delta of Nigeria”, which argued that since Nigeria derives the bulk of its revenue from crude oil, the oil multinationals act as a government on their own, operating with minimum safety rules and thus despoiling both land and water resources. The effect is that people can no longer partake in traditional occupations such as fishing or farming. Yet, because of the general poverty level of people and because of the perceived wealth of oil companies, the area continues to get steady streams of people for all categories of jobs. The result is the increasing of desertification in the area and continued loss of forested land and polluted rivers. The paper suggests more pro-active actions and greater vigilance from government and its agencies and, most importantly, the economic empowerment of the people of the Niger Delta. (For further information on this session and papers presented, contact Samuel Babatunde Agbola, Chair, IHDP NC Nigeria, babatundeagbola@yahoo.com, and John Forje, Chair, IHDP NC Cameroon, jowifor@yahoo.fr) IHDP NCP Zimbabwe/IHDP NCP South Africa, “Droughts, Poverty, and Livelihoods: Key Issues from Southern Africa”: Global Environmental Change (GEC) is a key issue 30 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

that impacts on Southern Africa. One area, but not the only area of concern, is climate change (e.g. droughts and floods). The recurrence of droughts has impacted heavily on rain-fed agriculture and food provision with increased poverty in the region. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for national economies of Southern Africa has shown to be significantly affected by consecutive droughts causing need for food aid nearly every year. Tropical cyclone induced floods in the late summer have only worsened the food situation, often increasing disease and malaria epidemics among human communities. The effects of a harsh climate have been exacerbated by HIV/AIDS, high unemployment, unstable macro-economies and governance issues. This session was organized by IHDP NCP Zimbabwe to raise key human dimensions issues grappling Southern Africa including climate and society interactions; poverty and livelihoods; agriculture, food systems and food security in the context of droughts. A recent regional workshop, organized by IHDP NC South Africa, for ‘young’ scientists on HDGEC in Southern Africa (held in Richards Bay, South Africa, 13-15 September 2004) demonstrated excellent research output with high quality and in-depth data analysis from the region, a few of which presented their findings in this session. The issues were discussed in terms of complex human-environment feedback interactions; social policy responses to environmental change; vulnerability and adaptive capacity; methodological debates in HD research; interdisciplinary research and common agendas. A case study was presented by IHDP NC Botswana “Limits to Livelihood and Environmental Sustainability in Kgalagadi Environment of Southwestern Botswana: The Case of the Matsheng Village”, which addressed the extent to which water still remains the principal limiting factor to socio-economic development and sustainable rangeland management in southwestern Botswana. (For further information on this session and papers presented, contact Hector Chikoore, Member, IHDP NCP Zimbabwe, hectorchikoore@yahoo.com) IHDP NCP Argentina/NCP Chile, “Regional Approaches to Human-Environment Studies: Environmental Ethics”: Ethics is the philosophical discipline that reflects critically upon the moral questions of human beings. This is a complex and problematic field due to its special relationships with all the areas that have to do with human action, motivations, sense, norms and values. Since Rio Summit, 1992, issues such as sustainable environmental development, quality of life, rights of future generations, rights and/or duties towards nature, etc., have reached such a high level of discussion that they have made their way into common conscience as concepts, which are ambiguous and dilemmatic enough to encourage theoretical discussion. Thus, social as well as natural sciences have been invited to the debate where modern notions of nature and human practices in relation to the environment are questioned. This forced a revision of the bases of our modern science and civilization process and a re-examination of the social representation of the relation society-nature. This reflection brings about the need to build dialogue spaces for analysis of representations (or visions of the world), which provide the models from which the building of values is based and the variety of ethical systems is explained.


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The aim of this session was to share different conceptions of the relationship society-nature, which have built different environmental ethics. The possibility of finding ways to build consensus strategies appears from knowledge and mutual respect towards antagonistic approaches, based on the articulation of legitimate differences towards a sustainable and less conflictive common future with the generation of norms and values which enable and optimize co-existence by and for all. In her paper, “Ethics, Science and Global Environment: Thoughts Upon Human Action, Science, Power and Nature – Society Vulnerability”, IHDP NCP Argentina, Elda Tancredi, analyzed components of contemporary debate on ‘ethical turn’ and the relationship with global environmental issues. Some critical points on the history of moral considerations upon nature-society relationship in western thoughts were described. (For further information on this session and paper presented, contact Elda Tancredi, Chair, IHDP NCP Argentina, eldatancredi1@ciudad.com.ar and Alejandro Leon, Chair, IHDP NCP Chile, aleon-a@uchile.cl) IHDP NCP Belarus, “The Capacity Assessment for Public Participation in SEA: Case of Belarus”: The path Belarus follows after it gained independence in 1991 is very similar to those adopted by most formerly Soviet Republics. It includes top-down governance and heavy dominance of the state in all spheres of public life, which worked fairly well for the enforcement of environmental of administrative mechanisms, such as taxation and pollution abatement control. However, some international obligations taken by Belarus imply the development of mechanisms based on public participation and stakeholder dialogue. Furthermore, the UNECE SEA (Strategic Environmental Assessment) Protocol with its core requirements for transparency and bringing broader public on every step of the process will be signed in the near future. The Protocol does not describe the way of interactions with public; public participation is compulsory, but the Parties of the protocol are free to design their own procedures for consultations. If legal and institutional practices of open societies fit easily the principles of the SEA, in Belarus, like in many other countries with weak traditions of cooperation with non-governmental sector, such mechanisms are still to be developed. Though not really strong, environmental NGOs in Belarus are well-established institutional structures; they rely on substantial expertise of their members in environmental issues, they are relatively open to new ideas, flexible in decision-making and, as often demonstrated, have strong environmental and social commitment. It was therefore recognized that the NGOs could play a significant role in the SEA implementation as dynamic, proactive players. The central question of the study was: whether Belarusian environmental NGOs are capable of participation in the SEA procedures and whether they can mobilize broader public for this. Specific research objectives were 1) to review compulsory and non-binding requirements for participation embedded in the Protocol against the provisions of the Belarusian legislation and existing institutional settings, 2) to analyse the capacity and readiness of environmental NGOs to contribute to the SEA procedures and to benefit from them; and 3) to develop policy recommendations. The study included survey of the SEA stakeholder groups with emphasis on environmental

NGOs (through interviews and questionnaires), analysis of the national, international and EU legislation, and SWOT analysis of the NGO’s participation in the SEA. The survey showed that NGOs fully realize their role and responsibilities in the SEA; all of them have expressed their will to be a part of it. Main reasons for participation were “to influence the incorporation of environmental matters in decision-making” and “to increase NGOs authority and political weight”; all organizations believed their future role in the SEA significant. It was found that NGOs staff members had sufficient expertise in possible areas of the SEA, though they were not well aware of the SEA itself. Therefore, further training events are needed, particularly in the light of the NGOs mission to communicate the information on the SEA to the broader public. The NGOs do not report any problems with the access to information on the SEA: all of them have access to the Internet and printed materials, and it is noteworthy that language barrier (most published materials are in English) was not a major problem. Representatives of NGOs also had an opportunity to attend workshops on the SEA arranged by the UNDP office in Minsk. These were reported as very well prepared and the most helpful, especially if compared to others. However, it is the lack of finance that was identified by most as the major barrier for participation in the SEA and involvement of broader public into it; financial help was expected rather from abroad than from the national agencies. The closest reference to the SEA principles of public participation in the Belarusian legislation is Public Environmental Review (PER), which is an optional part of the compulsory environmental expertise. Respondents from the environmental NGOs have indicated their mistrust in the PER as a working participatory mechanism, and its former participants have expressed their deep dissatisfaction about it. If extended over the SEA, this tendency can lead to what might be called “false participation”, i.e. formal involvement of public without taking seriously their concerns. As such, the PER still can be considered an opportunity for the development of public participation. Another alarming trend is that neither governmental officials nor NGOs fully realize the importance of the SEA steps; both are inclined to prefer expert judgments to the opinions of broader public. Other threats are peoples’ suspicious attitude towards any kinds of non-governmental activities, and the increasing indifference about environmental problems. It can be concluded from the study that Belarusian environmental NGOs have sufficient potential for participation in the SEA implementation, serious threats notwithstanding. Meanwhile, capacity-building actions should be taken: distribution of promotional materials, trainings and workshops, establishment of NGO networks (those existing do not really work). Discussion of the SEA legislation should be open and interactive; a pilot project demonstrating working mechanisms of public participation should precede the final hearings and approval of the SEA legislation. (For further information on this paper presented, contact Maria Falaleeva, Co-Chair IHDP NCP Belarus, falaleeva_mariya@mail.ru and Anton Shkaruba, Co-Chair, IHDP NCP Belarus, fiumicina@yahoo. com) IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 31


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NATIONAL COMMIT TEES / BARBAR A GÖBEL

IHDP NATIONAL COMMITTEES MEET IN BONN B Y D EBRA M EYER-W EFERING To-date, 62 nations are actively linked to the IHDP research community (compared to half this number at the time of the Rio Open Meeting in 2001), with 31 National Committees (thirteen of which are categorized as Global Change Committees within the context of the ESSP) and 31 National Contact Points. Of these nations, more than half are located in developing countries and transition economies. IHDP takes a ‘bottom-up’ approach, drawing upon voluntary participation and commitment of researchers from different disciplines representing all regions of the world. The steady increase is the result of more clearly defined roles and functions of the National Committees, as well as a noticeable rise in the profiles of our National Committees within the Programme. This is being achieved via the coordination of the IHDP Secretariat by increasing exposure of national/regional activities in the UPDATE newsletter and the website, through facilitating cooperation between researchers in different National Committees and between the National Committees and IHDP projects. IHDP has also funded National Committee Chairs to represent its Programme often in HDGEC-related meetings, namely those regionally relevant to the Committees and to IHDP projects. IHDP National Committees serve as a platform to create and raise awareness and capacity of national science communities on the importance of IHDP research and development. All strive to increase the visibility and understanding of IHDP research priorities, promoting and raising the profile of HDGEC research in a national context. In recent years, the National Committees have been taking a more proactive role in participating in the shaping of future plans for the Programme and in helping to strengthen the interactions between the science community and policy makers. The meeting of IHDP National Committee Chairs was organized to provide a forum for the exchange of information between National Committees on their operational aspects, national research agendas, and to explore the possibilities of fur-

ther strengthening their role with regards to defining IHDP projects. The meeting served to compare approaches and research methodologies on interdisciplinary HDGEC research at the national/regional levels. It assessed organization, coordination, gaps, needs for improvement, and served to promote collaboration, partnerships and communication of IHDP-related research and direct linkages to the Programme. Just over 60 national representatives from 45 National Committees and National Contact Points, actively took part in this meeting. Of these, more than half came from developing countries or transition economies. The meeting also attracted an additional 50 Open Meeting participants to listen and learn about our national and regional networks. The scientific leadership of the meeting was shared amongst select NC Chairs and the discussions were steered by the lead figures in IHDP governance, namely the outgoing and incoming Chairs of the IHDP Scientific Committee, as well as the outgoing and incoming Executive Directors of the IHDP. We would like to thank all of the National Committee Chairs for their intellectual input during the preparations for, presentations and discussion during the meeting, but also for their openness, enthusiasm and above all commitment to the future success of the IHDP. The IHDP will continue to work together with you to ensure you have a clear voice within our Programme. The meeting could not have been realized without the generous financial support of the United Nations Environment, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Social Science Council (ISSC). Their contribution to the IHDP Seed Grant Initiative made it possible for twelve National Committee representatives to take active part in this meeting as well as present papers during the Open Meeting. ➤ Debra Meyer-Wefering is International Science Project Coordinator at the IHDP Secretariat, Bonn, Germany; wefering.ihdp@uni-bonn.de

TRANSPARENCY AND FAIRNESS ARE CRUCIAL INTERVIEW WITH FORMER IHDP EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR BARBARA GÖBEL Q: When you chose the position of IHDP Executive Director, what were your assets, and what were the new challenges? When taking this position three years ago, I was the first Director of IHDP with a strong background in the humanities. I also integrated three areas of experience that are, in my opinion, of relevance for strengthening the social science components of global change research, as well as to develop an interdisciplinary and international programme, that takes the diversity of scientific paradigms and the different regional perspectives on global environmental change (in particular the voices of the South) into account. First, I have long-term experience in 32 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

interdisciplinary research, teaching and project management in the area of human-environmental relations. Second, I have a strong inter-cultural background. This is related to my biography (I grew up in Spain and in Argentina), my professional training as a social anthropologist with more than 3 years of fieldwork in the Andes, and my working experience in universities and research institutions of different countries (Germany, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and France), which sharpened my sense of how different cultural and institutional settings influence scientific practices. And third, in my research I have always been interested in social science theories and methods, and in how to link, for example, economic and cultural approaches.


Interview

BARBARA GÖBEL

New challenges were represented to me by the management of an international, interdisciplinary staff of about 12 people and of a complex structure (of a network of networks) with a broad range of thematic foci and a great variety of activities. What was also new for me was that I often found myself in situations where I was assigned the role of representing “the” social sciences (including humanities and economics).

me the relevance of the dynamic combination of subjective and practical engagement, and analytical distance in order to allow creative diversity but, at the same time, keep focused and pragmatic. Q: What are the future challenges for IHDP?

Barbara Göbel

Q: What were the main achievements of the last three years? The visibility of IHDP increased, not only in the context of global change research but also within the social sciences. New project developments, an internal and external assessment process of what IHDP has achieved so far, the organization of the 6th Open Meeting with a series of preparatory synthesis workshops, and a stronger outreach strategy are some of the crucial steps in this process. In the interface between natural and social sciences, new joint projects were developed together with IGBP (e.g. LOICZ and GLP), and IHDP played a central role in the development of the Earth System Science Partnership. But we have also been able to attract more core social science communities by linking research on global environmental change to a greater extent to globalization studies. In the last three years, IHDP also started to work more focused on the science-practice interface, an area that my successor, Andreas Rechkemmer, will certainly develop much further. We also developed a capacity building strategy that is embedded into the development of IHDP’s core research projects and takes regional needs into account. And last but not least, I should also mention that the operational basis of the programme and its whole governance structure were strengthened. All this would not have been possible without the support of the staff of the IHDP Secretariat, the Scientific Committee and the Scientific Steering Committees of the core research projects, and my colleagues in the partner programmes. Q: Could you summarize some of the most important experiences/lessons you learned in the last three years? The last three years in IHDP have been an intellectually inspiring and personally very enriching experience, one that I would not like to miss. I had the opportunity to work together with outstanding personalities and intellectuals, and I gained new friends. These have been also very intensive years, demanding much support and understanding from my husband and my little daughter because of my frequent absences. My work at IHDP (re-)emphasized for me the importance of fairness, of transparency in the process, and the respect of difference. These key attributes are fundamental for the trust building required for the work in these types of interdisciplinary and international settings. It also showed

IHDP needs to further extend its international presence and broaden its interdisciplinary basis. It will have to be able to attract funding from more countries in order to assure the sustainability of the programme. Another important and ongoing challenge for IHDP is to organize a strong input of the social sciences into the global change arena in epistemological coherent ways. An additional challenge is to establish a stronger nexus between science and practice. This requires the production of knowledge not only for understanding but also knowledge for action and actionable knowledge. And finally it is also a future challenge to include, to a greater extent, multiple cultural perspectives (ontologies and knowledge systems) on global environmental change (definition, context, causes, impacts, etc.) into one explanatory frame. Q: Tell us a little bit about your new job in Berlin I left IHDP in October 2005 in order to take the directorship of the Ibero-American Institute in Berlin, an institution promoting scientific and cultural exchange of Germany with Latin America, the Caribbean, Spain and Portugal. It is not only an interdisciplinary research centre for the social sciences and humanities which hosts the largest library in Europe on the Ibero-American region, but also develops a broad range of cultural activities, thus acting as a widely recognized coordination platform for the relations between these countries. Similar to my position in the IHDP one of my main tasks is to bring together different actors and institutions and organize common activities and projects. New aspects are the strong inclusion of the cultural dimension in the science policy interfaces and the much larger infrastructure I have to manage. In spite of these new challenges it was not an easy decision for me to leave IHDP. At the moment, the programme is in a very interesting phase as its role in the global change arena and its visibility has increased considerably. Coleen Vogel, Roberto Sánchez Rodríguez and I invested a lot of intellectual energy, emotional commitment and personal time to strenghten IHDP’s operational basis and to develop its scientific frame further. I was looking forward to harvesting from these investments and being able to devote more time to the science related to the programme. However, the formal conditions of the offer in Berlin and the high reputation of the Ibero-American Institute in the social sciences and humanities as well as the cultural and political worlds related to Latin America, Spain and Portugal led me to accept my new position. Even though this means “Goodbye” to the IHDP Secretariat it does not mean “Farewell” to IHDP as a whole. I will keep the connection to the IHDP and hope to be able to contribute further to the development of global environmental change research through my new position’s focus on culture and globalization. INTERVIEW BY ULA LÖW IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 33


In Brief NEWS

IN BRIEF ➤➤➤ We are in a period of change at the IHDP Secretariat. First of all, IHDP has a new Executive Director since November last year. We would like to welcome Dr. Andreas Rechkemmer who comes in from the United Nations University, and we would like to say ‘goodbye’ to our Executive Director of the past years, Dr. Barbara Göbel, and wish her good luck in her new position as Director of the IberoAmerican Institute, Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation in Berlin. During her Andreas Rechkemmer time at the Secretariat she has been working tirelessly and has been dedicated to promoting IHDP, making it more visible and successful worldwide. Andreas has been working as a Senior Academic Advisor to the Director of UNU’s Institute for Environment and Human Security (EHS) in Bonn, Germany. Prior to that he served the United Nations as a Programme Officer at the Secretariat of the Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), and worked at the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP) – German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Europe’s largest foreign affairs think-tank. Andreas is a guest researcher at the Social Science Centre Berlin (WZB), and lectures at Free University of Berlin and the European School of Governance (EUSG). He holds a Master in Political Science and a PhD in International Relations. His research focus is on global environmental governance, with particular views to human security and the reform of the United Nations system. Andreas is author, co-author and editor of several books, scientific papers and press articles. But there are more people coming and going. Maarit Thiem is on parental leave since the beginning of this year. We wish her all the best and look forward to working with her again soon. With Falk Schmidt, we are happy to welcome

The 2006 ConAccount meeting

„Dematerialization Across Scales: Measurement, Empirical Evidence, Future Options“ September 13-14, 2006, Vienna Austria Back to back with a policy dialogue „dematerialization why and how?“ September 15, 2006 Timeline: Deadline for submission of abstracts: May 2006 Notice of acceptance and final programme: June 2006 Conference Chairs Helga Weisz, Heinz Schandl, Paul Brunner http://www.iff.ac.at/socec/conaccount2006

34 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

another new team member. As a scientific consultant he will be leading the effort to synthesize the major scientific achievements of IHDP over the past 10 years. Falk holds a M.A. in Philosophy, Business Administration and Law and is currently a Ph.D. student in Political Science at the Free University, Berlin. His research focus is on global environmental governance with a strong emphasis on regime building, especially in the field of freshwater. Falk Schmidt is co-author of a book and published several scientific articles about the institutional dimensions of global environmental governance, but also ethical questions and challenges. Also in our core projects, life changes. Maureen Woodrow, who rendered outstanding services in her many years as Executive Officer of GECHS, has left the project. She will continue – all the more intensely – with her research on climate change and human security. The new GECHS Executive Officer is Lynn Rosentrater. She is a geographer who has worked in climate change research, including developing a better understanding the carbon cycle, impacts to biodiversity, and adaptation opportuniLynn Rosentrater ties. She has been affiliated with the Long-Term Ecological Research Network, the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme, and WWF the conservation organization. She has extensive experience as a project manager, working in the fields of education and research, as well as in the computer industry. Her research interests focus on the human dimensions of global change, especially with regard to the social drivers of change — cultural, economic, demographic and political forces — and how these in turn are influenced by the environment. Welcome on board, Lynn!

IDGEC Synthesis Conference 6-9 December 2006, Bali, Indonesia The Second Call for Papers is now open. The deadline for paper and poster submissions has been extended to 1 March 2006. For more information, please use the following link to access the IDGEC Synthesis Conference Second Announcement: http://fiesta.bren.ucsb.edu/~idgec/science/IDGEC2nd Announcement_FINAL.pdf We look forward to hearing from all interested GEC research community members and look forward to continuing the synthesis process with your input.


Publications NEW BOOKS

NEW BOOKS Global Change and Mountain Regions An Overview of Current Knowledge

Industrial Transformation in the Developing World By Michael T. Rock and David P. Angel

Edited by Uli Huber, Harald Bugmann and Mel Reasoner Mountain regions occupy about a quarter of the global terrestrial land surface and provide goods and services to more than half the humanity. Global environmental change threatens the integrity of these systems and their ability to provide the goods and services upon which humanity has come to depend. This book gives an overview of the state of research in fields pertaining to the detection, understanding and prediction of global change impacts in mountain regions. More than 60 contributions from paleoclimatology, cryospheric research, hydrology, ecology, and development studies are compiled in this volume, each with an outlook on future research directions. Springer2005, 650 p., Hardcover, US$199.00 ISBN: 1-4020-3506-3

Industrial Transformation Environmental Policy Innovation in the United States and Europe Edited by Theo de Bruijn and Vicki Norberg-Bohm The MIT Press, July 2005, ISBN 0-262-54181-5 The United States and European countries are experimenting with a new generation of policy approaches for combating environmental degradation. Industrial Transformation evaluates the effectiveness of twelve innovative voluntary, collaborative, and information-based programs, focusing particularly on the effectiveness of these programs in bringing about industrial transformation — changes in production and consumption structures that will help move their societies toward environmental sustainability. The twelve programs analyzed have the potential to create incentives for industry leadership, stimulate beyond-compliance behavior, address environmental degradation not currently regulated, and encourage innovative solutions by involving a wide range of stakeholders. The programs — six in the United States and six in Europe — include Energy Star product labeling in the United States, R&D collaboration in US Department of Energy programs, the US Toxic Release Inventories, the EU’s Eco-Audit Regulation as implemented in the UK, the Dutch Target Group Policy, and the German End-of-Life Vehicles Program. The comparative analysis of the twelve programs proves that these new approaches are not a panacea for industrial transformation. Taken together, the cases provide a range of experiences from which to draw lessons for future policy design.

An important and timely book by leading experts ‘Grow first, clean up later’ environmental strategies in the developing economies of East Asia - China, Korea, and Taiwan in Northeast Asia and Indonesia, Malaysia, the Phillippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam in Southeast Asia - pose a critical regional and global sustainability challenge in this area of continuing rapid urban-based industrial growth. It is the most polluted region in the world. Whilst being at the leading edge of the processes of urbanization, industrialization, and globalization these economies are in the midst, not at the end, of their urban-industrial transformations. During the next 25 years urban populations in the region are expected roughly to double, and most of the industrial capital stock that will be on the ground by 2030 has not yet been built. Given East Asia’s growing size in the world’s economy and ecology, and its increasingly polluted environment, this looming urban-industrial transformation is both a challenge and an opportunity. Unless steps are taken now to make this transformation more sustainable, East Asia’s, and the world’s, environmental future is likely to deteriorate seriously. Oxford University Press, October 2005, 272 pages, numerous tables and line drawings, ISBN-10: 0-19-927004-X, Price: £50.00 (Hardback)

Improving Impacts of Research Partnerships http://www.kfpe.ch/key_activities/impact_ study/index.html This new KFPE-publication is based on analyses of a number of case studies encompassing a wide variety of research partnerships between the North and the South, discussions held during the various workshops of the «Impact Assessment Working Group»[1], and the conclusions derived. The book focuses on potential impacts of such research partnerships – impacts beyond the scientific advance, namely ‘attitudinal changes’, impacts on capacity strengthening, and impacts on society or on decision-makers.

Choosing the Right Projects Designing Selection Processes for NorthSouth Research Partnership Programmes http://www.kfpe.ch/key_activities/ selection_process/index.html By Priska Sieber und Thomas Braunschweig The aim of present publication is to help design, revise, and implement project selection processes in North-South research partnership (NSRP) programmes. In particular, it addresses the complex challenge of dealing with the multiple objectives of NSRP programmes: scientific quality, development relevance, and adherence to partnership principles.

IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006 | 35


Publicatons/Calendar NEW BOOK / EVENTS

Sustainable Consumption The Implications of Changing Infrastructures of Provision Edited by Dale Southerton, Heather Chappells, and Bas Van Vliet Sustainable Consumption is unique, not just in its inter-disciplinary and substantive subject matter (changing networks of utility consumption and production), but because it examines empirically the key theoretical debates underpinning the social sciences at the beginning of the 21st century. This book shifts the focus of sustainable consumption away from the individual consumer and their lifestyles, and examines how existing systems of provision constrain how people consume and how sustainability is conceived in popular and policy-related discourses. 2004 192pp Hardback 1 84376 330 3 £45.00 The Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning is an international Journal that provides a forum for the critical analysis of environmental policy and planning. It explores the environmental dimensions of common policies such as transport, agriculture and fisheries, urban and rural policy, all stages in the policy and planning processes from formulation to implementation, and the interactions between governments and markets, the strategies of non-governmental organizations and business in relation to the environment, and land-use decision-making. Discounted subscription rate to IHDP members: £40 and US$66 (reduced from £71 and US$113)

Global Environmental Change: Regional Challenges An Earth System Science Partnership Global Environmental Change Open Science Conference Call for Contributions (February - April). The Earth System Science Partnership (ESSP) invites scientists, policy makers, practitioners, scholars, members of the private sector and journalists to participate in this Conference and to submit abstracts (oral or poster presentations) relating to parallel session themes. Please note that this call will mostly be for poster presentations, and that poster sessions will be an integral part of the Conference. www.essp.org/ESSP2006 Abstracts for presentations and posters may be submitted online February - May 2006

Executive Officer Position

MEETING CALENDAR

URBANIZATION AND GLOBAL

➤➤➤ 27 - 29 March - Bonn, Germany

ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE PROJECT

3rd International Conference on Early Warning (EWC III) http://www.ewc3.org ➤➤➤ 20 - 21 April - Miami, USA

A Core Project of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change (IHDP) The Urbanization and Global Environmental Change (UGEC) Project is seeking a highly motivated person to serve as its fulltime Executive Officer for the period June 2006 through June 2009. The position will be located in the UGEC International Project Office at the Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, USA. For more information, please see www.ihdp.org

17th Global Warming International Conference and Expo (GW17) http://globalwarming.net ➤➤➤ 18 - 20 May - Paris, France Energy, Material and Urban Environment (EMUE) http://www.univ-mlv.fr/~www-ltmu/EMUE/ ➤➤➤ 31 May - 3 June - Honolulu, Hawaii, USA 5th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Social Sciences

➤ The IHDP UPDATE newsletter features the activities of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change and its research community. ISSN 1727-155X UPDATE is published by the IHDP Secretariat Walter-Flex-Strasse 3 53113 Bonn, Germany. EDITOR: Ula Löw, IHDP; loew.ihdp@uni-bonn.de LAYOUT AND PRINT: Köllen Druck+Verlag GmbH, Bonn+Berlin, Germany UPDATE is published four times per year. Sections of UPDATE may be reproduced with acknowledgement to IHDP. Please send a copy of any reproduced material to the IHDP Secretariat. This newsletter is produced using funds by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the United States National Science Foundation (NSF). The views and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the position of IHDP or its sponsoring organizations

http://www.hicsocial.org ➤➤➤ 11 - 14 June - De Spreeuwel, The Netherlands Tourism and Climate Change Mitigation ➤➤➤ 12 - 15 June - London, UK HOLIVAR 2006 Open Science Meeting The ESF Programme on Holocene Climate Variability is organizing its Final Open Meeting ➤➤➤ 19 – 23 June – Bali, Indonesia Survival of the Commons: Mounting Challenges and New Realities 11th IASCP Global Conference http://www.iascp.org/bali/iascp06.html ➤➤➤ 20 – 23 June – Bonn, Germany Governance and the Global Water System Institutions http://www.gwsp.org

36 | IHDP NEWSLETTER 1/2006

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