List of Abstracts

Environment

Wednesday October 1st

Room 1.325, 13:30 – 15:00

 Participants

Christian Webersik, University of Bergen

Short-, Median, and Long-Run Impacts of Climate Change on Human Security

 Erlend Eidsvik, Bergen University College

Carbon-Scheme Plantations and Divergences in Narratives and Practices in North and South

 Hans Adam, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Mainstreamed Adaptation in Practice: India’s MGNREGA in Attapaddy Block – A Case Study

 Panel Chair: Rachel Djesa, University of Tromsø, Centre for Sami Studies

Abstracts

Christian Webersik

Short-, Median, and Long-Run Impacts of Climate Change on Human Security

History tells us that the human race is perfectly capable of adapting to a changing environment. Climate change will happen—and if unabated—with catastrophic consequences. More extreme weather events, sea-level rise, and a hotter and drier climate are some of the predicted and outcomes seriously affecting people’s choice of where to live on a much more crowded planet. Large cross-border streams of “climate migrants” or “environmental refugees” caused by sea-level rise could even trigger resource competition with violent outcomes in the receiving country or region. But can these claims be substantiated? Does climate change play a role in people’s decisions to migrate? This paper conceptualizes and contextualizes the links between climate change and migration, and argues that without an analysis of people’s perceptions toward climate change and its impacts, it is difficult to assess linear climate change and migration links.

Erlend Eidsvik

Carbon-Scheme Plantations and Divergences in Narratives and Practices in North and South

Carbon emission trading schemes are concrete political-economic mitigation measures attempting to adjust for increased levels of CO2. Launching forest plantations is one specific and remedial action within this scheme. Many of these plantations are investments from European enterprises carried out on foreign territory, in Africa, Asia and Latin America, in compliance with the European Union’s Emission Trading Scheme – the most influential cap-and-trade programme for greenhouse gases (Ellerman et al 2010). Norwegian companies are also increasingly involved in carbon trade. A new study claims that Norway, through private Norwegian companies, is the fourth largest acquirer of land in Africa (Cotula 2013). Accumulated, Scandinavian investors are responsible for more than 1.2 million ha in forestry plantations on the African continent (Shoneveld 2011).

Although there is established scientific consensus on the human impact on climate change, it has not been established a scientific consensus on the effect of carbon trading schemes. Some question the practise of such schemes, itself, claiming that it is ‘potentially to be quite negative from a climate change mitigation perspective’ when one takes into account the loss in biodiversity (Ajani 2008).

However, the rhetoric’s from the carbon scheme industry itself, seek to legitimise conversion of degraded grassland into carbon sinks by producing energy from renewable resources. Moreover, the industry’s arguments for local and sustainable development are accentuated not only to legitimize the business itself, but also to address critiques on neo-colonial praxis and land-grabbing.

Consequently, we are facing ambiguities at several levels. The financial measures of a carbon credit system seem to affect political action, at the same time as the ecological effects are disputed.  In addition, the consequences of land-intensive investments in plantations on foreign territory are also highly questionable.

By looking at these contradictory factors together, whether they are mirrored through the lenses of neo-colonialism or perceived as sustainable regional development projects, it seems that they rely on a set of tautological beliefs rather than knowledge-based (scientific) assessments of the current climate crisis.

The paper intends to perform a discourse analysis of central documents and narratives at three different levels involved in the carbon trade. First, it concerns analysis of official Norwegian state-level (the Norwegian Environment Agency) texts and statements on carbon credit schemes. Secondly, the texts from a Norwegian plantation company – Green Resources – will be analysed. Green Resources has invested in large-scale forest plantations in Uganda, Tanzania and Mozambique. Norwegian authorities, on their side, has committed to purchase CDM (Clean Development Mechanisms) quotas through Green Resources. Thirdly, critical ground study reports published by www.cdm-africa.org, such as ‘The CDM in Africa Cannot Deliver the Money’ (Bond et al 2012), will be subject for analysis.

A discursive reading of these documents will reveal how knowledge is applied differently to emphasis scientific, political and economic perspectives on carbon emissions and the climate crisis.
Hans Adam

Mainstreamed Adaptation in Practice: India’s MGNREGA in Attapaddy Block – A Case Study

The MGNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) is one of the world’s largest Public Works Programmes and forms a core part of India’s anti-poverty strategy. Recently it has also been identified for its role and use in domestic climate adaptation. Mainstreaming of social sector programmes into climate policy has gained widespread traction in policy circles over the past decade, including India. In the case of the MGNREGA, while identified for mainstreaming purposes, there remains a dearth of context specific, empirical research which critically examines  how and to what extent it manages to meet this ‘climate role’.

This manuscript examines the adaptation role that the scheme adopts in practice through the analysis of multiple data sources collected during fieldwork in Attapaddy Tribal Development Block in the south Indian state of Kerala. It argues that the scheme does contribute to securing access and use of resources critical to livelihoods, reduces vulnerability and fosters adaptation processes, particularly in the case of the most vulnerable population sections. Nevertheless it falls short from precipitating transformational change required to secure livelihood independence and in some contexts can even limit the potential for structural change that is required to address root causes of vulnerability. Similarly, ‘maladaptative’ practices can be discerned in the absence of tweaked governance mechanisms that incorporate a climate lens. Finally, based on the research findings a way forward is suggested to increase efficiency and efficacy of the scheme as a tool for climate adaptation.

 

 

The NFU African Politics and Development Group:

African Crossroads: The Politics of Development and Conflict

Wednesday October 1st

Room 1.329, 13:30 – 15:00

 The NFU African Politics and Development Group is one of three permanent, but open research groups in the Norwegian Association for Development Research (NFU). The aim of the group is to bring together scholars (junior and seniors) from different disciplinary backgrounds with an interest in the intersection between politics and development in Africa.

Africa is currently standing at a crossroad. Relatively high African growth rates in combination with increased institutional strength, credibility and legitimacy of the African Union (AU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has led to higher confidence in Africa’s ability to deal with the continent’s many challenges. However, as underscored by recent events in Eastern Congo, the turmoil in the Sahel (e.g. Algeria and Northern Mali, and the Central African Republic), the on-going trouble in and between the two Sudans and in Somalia, the uncertainty related to the consequences of the Kenyan elections and other difficult nexuses between politics and development, the continent is still also confronted with significant political and developmental challenges that could have severe ramifications across countries and regions. This include, but is in no way exclusive to studies of government and governance, politics, conflict, elections, minority representation, citizenship and belonging, and youth and youth involvement in politics broadly defined. The group is therefore inviting abstract submissions from all researchers interested in joining us in Tromsø to elaborate and discuss these and related themes.

Participants

Morten Bøås, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI)

Ingvild Skage, University of Bergen

From Criminals to Workers: Litigation or Party Politics as Variants of Political Inclusion of Street Vendors in Zambia and Colombia

 Zerihun Woldeselassie, University of Tromsø

 Panel Chair: Morten Bøås

Abstracts

Ingvild Skage

From Criminals to Workers: Litigation or Party Politics as Variants of Political Inclusion of Street Vendors in Zambia and Colombia

In this paper we study two different political processes through which street vending have changed from being considered a criminal activity to a legitimate livelihood activity and work. The comparative study is based on a least-similar-systems-design of two cases: Zambia and Colombia. We find that an important factor for the de-criminalization and recognition of street vending as work has been the emergence of a global social movement for street vendors that responded to the effects of neoliberal economic globalization from the late 1980s. However, comparing street vending politics in Colombia and Zambia, we find that the political-institutional setup in each country impact on the nature and form of political inclusion, as well as on the type of street vendor “friendly” policy outcomes.

In Colombia, litigation through the Supreme Court has led to minor legal gains in terms of protection and rights for street vendors, although much remains unchanged on the ground. In Zambia, partisan electoral mobilization has resulted in the street vendors into a patrimonial system based on direct reciprocity between the vendors and the President through neglect of law.  Notwithstanding these different forms of political inclusion, the gains for street vendors remain futile in both countries, as the governing institutions are still largely placed within the old paradigm of formalization and modernization. While the social movements have achieved a first objective – that of recognition and legitimation – their legal gains are fragile and any long term institutional solutions still far-flung.

 

 

Gender and Positionalities in the Field

Wednesday October 1st

Auditorium 2, 13:30 – 15:00

 Participants

Noor Elahi, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Gender Inequality in Accessing Livelihoods Resources in Northwestern Pakistan

 Marianne Millstein, The Nordic Africa Institute

Changing Fieldwork Relations: Some Methodological Reflections from South Africa

 Siri Gerrard, University of Tromsø

Why Research Collaboration South-North is Important in a Feminist Researcher’s Career

 Panel Chair: Lise Nordbrønd, University of Tromsø, Centre for Women’s and Gender Research

Abstracts

Noor Elahi

Gender Inequality in Accessing Livelihoods Resources in Northwestern Pakistan

Gender inequality exists in most part of the world in accessing livelihood assets, particularly in developing countries, due to different cultural perspectives, resources and living patterns. This paper attempts to focus on how men and women of different ethnic and social groups access and use social, natural and human assets in their daily lives. Further this paper examined impacts of social and cultural perspectives of gender inequality on development in Swat valley of northwestern Pakistan.

Following a constructionist theoretical perspective, qualitative ethnographic research methods were employed, including a household survey, formal/informal interviews, focus group discussions and participant observation. This study found that access to various livelihood assets between men and women, and between different social groups, is not equal. Under the ‘Pukhtoonwali’ a code of conduct, men are expected to be the breadwinners and they hold the power and authority outside the household in accessing all types of resources. Women accesses are limited to a reproductive role within the household, which is viewed as being necessary in order to protect the honor of the family. However, employed women and those belonging to high-class families have some say in decision making within the household about the utilization of and access to resources, child care, education and marriages. The implications of inequality for development policies and unequal distribution of resources encouraged the poor and other lower social ethnic groups to support and join the militant group against the government and landlords in Swat valley.

Marianne Millstein

Changing Fieldwork Relations: Some Methodological Reflections from South Africa

In this paper I reflect upon changing fieldwork relations over a period of ten years working with a community in Cape Town. My research in South Africa has been informed by a commitment to a critical and engaged community research, based on an ideal that our work should also have some meaning beyond the academic conversation. However, bridging these gaps is complex and often difficult. It challenges us to allow communities and citizens to shape the research endeavor, to represent or research results in different ways, and it often requires long term presence that is difficult for development researchers who move in and out of our fieldsites. Working on the ground in very complex communities, whether it is when we define research agendas, conduct fieldwork or disseminate results, we also risk being caught up in local sociopolitical dynamics that sometimes limit our ability to realize these ideals. Our positionality in these relations is not fixed, but fluid, and changing thro ugh negotiations with local identities and relations of race, class and gender.

In this paper I discuss some methodological as well as ethical implications of these shifting positionalities over time and how it has shaped my research and the knowledge production. I challenge the somewhat simplistic binary of the powerful researcher and the powerless activist/citizen, reflecting upon how our relations have shifted since 2004, providing new opportunities but also creating new constraints. I use some examples from my latest fieldwork in a temporary relocation area and in particular a narrative exposing my own ‘whiteness’, to reflect upon how class, race and gender has impacted upon the knowledge production through my engagement with different actors and issues in Delft.

Siri Gerrard

Why Research Collaboration South-North is Important in a Feminist Researcher’s Career

In this paper I will build on my experience in research collaboration between researchers from Norway, Tanzania and Cameroon, in other words in projects where women and men from the North as well as from the South collaborate.

I will try to demonstrate that shared research projects can be looked upon as a multi cultural meeting where the researchers participate with different as well as resembling experience, values and knowledge. During such collaboration processes the researchers have to tackle various challenges. Sometimes new perspectives and concepts might be developed and elaborated. Sometimes disagreements occur.

The conditions that the researchers are facing and how they manage to communicate, build up and develop the research relations seem to be of great importance. My assumption or hypotheses is that in order to develop new perspectives long term and joint research projects where both parties are active have better chances to succeed and thus result in new perspectives, publications, seminars and new projects etc compared with projects where such conditions do not exist. This is of great interests for feminist scholars since feminism build on a global solidarity and change to more powerful relations and better situation for women worldwide!

 

 

Power, Cross-Cultural Cooperation and the New Development Actors

Wednesday October 1st

Room 1.343, 13:30 – 15:00

 In the field of development the difficulty of communicating complex realities into a development debate is a recurring subject. The complexity of lived experience seems to complicate the picture to the extent that action is difficult. The development field turns to more generalized knowledge, as a background for policies and strategies for intervention, believed to work irrespective of specific local contexts. The result is often a framing of interpretations in one scheme, ignoring the importance of understanding how different life-worlds are produced and reproduced through everyday lives.

We argue that a similar situation is found in the area of integration work and policy in Norway, which is why development research can be productive also for the Norwegian integration debate.  The increasing presence of the South in the North encompasses mobile and trans-local lives – resulting not only from conflicts or forced migration but also by a perception of structures of opportunities existing in the North. As a result, Northern countries are grappling with complicated questions of integration of new citizens from the Global South. In this session we welcome papers discussing different aspects of cross-cultural communication across a North-South understanding, and how working in an increasingly trans-local world require new perspectives into the integration debate in Norway. We are highlighting the importance of acknowledging mobile lives and the importance of ethnographic work in order to understand and communicate complex realities into an overall integration debate and we particularly welcome papers who acknowledge or criticize such a perspective.

Participants

Lau Schulpen & Sara Kinsbergen, University of Nijmegen/Cidin

Your Next-Door Madonnas & Bonos: A Sustainability Study of Private Development Initiatives

June Fylkesnes, University of Agder

Exploring Idealism and Motivation for Giving: The Case of Small Scale Aid Initiatives in Norway

 Hanne Haaland & Hege Wallevik, University of Agder

“Home Made Aid” in Norway: Power and Resistance Across the North-South Span

 Panel Chair: Hanne Haaland & Hege Wallevik

 

 

Forests and Power: Inclusions and Exclusions in Forest Governance and REDD+ Processes

Wednesday October 1st

Room 1.333, 13:30 – 15:00

There is widespread consensus that reducing deforestation and forest degradation are important to protect valuable forests worldwide and now also as a way of addressing climate change. How to enhance forest governance and protect forests is contested, as well as what actors, ideas and knowledge to include. These inclusions and exclusions can have wide ranging consequences, especially for local communities affected by these policies and projects. The original idea of REDD was to value the forests store of carbon and provide financial rewards for developing countries to preserve forests and further to compensate for lost forest related income. However, REDD+ has moved from strictly carbon storage to multiple objectives, and REDD+ as a concept is now broad and vague enough as to allow different interpretations to fit with the interests and goals of different actors (A. Angelsen & McNeill, 2012).

In this panel we explore power relations in forest governance and contestations over different forest models and policies, including issues such as gender relations and ethnicity, land tenure and carbon rights, and local participation in forestry programs and policy processes. We take a closer look at the implementation of REDD and other forest policies in the field, ethical and moral dimensions, both in implementation and at policy level, communities understandings and preferences and their possibility to have their voices heard. How can we as researchers convey these voices?

Participants

Raymond Achu Samndong, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Gender, REDD+ and Forest Governance in the Equateur Province in the DRC

 Darley Jose Kjosavik, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Paying our way out of Climate Change? A Study of Compensation Preferences of Cocoa Farmers in a REDD+ Pilot in Aowin District, Ghana

Grete Benjaminsen, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

The Bricolage of REDD+ in Zanzibar: From International Environmental Policy to Community Forest Management

Mary Nantongo, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Transaction Costs for Establishing Governance Structures for REDD+: Lessons from Tanzania and Brazil

Leif Tore Trædal, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Forest Sector Policy Reforms in Vietnam: From State to Market – What’s News?

 Cecilie Hirsch, University of Oslo, Centre for Development and Environment & Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Inclusions and Exclusions in Forest Governance and Policies in Bolivia

 Clare Tompsett, University of Bergen

Contested State Power in Community Forests: Reterritorialization and the Van Panchayats of Uttarakhand, India

Panel Chair: Cecilie Hirsch

Abstracts

Raymond Achu Samndong

Co-author, Darley Jose Kjosavik

Gender, REDD+ and Forest Governance in the Equateur Province in the DRC

Reduced emission from deforestation and forest degradation and its co-benefits (REDD+) has emerged as a potential policy instrument in the international climate change discourse. The underlying principle of REDD+ mechanism is to provide strong economic incentives to forest owners and users in the south under performance based payment systems. Building legitimate governance structures to implement REDD+ seems challenging given the numerous tradeoff related to land tenure and carbon rights, forest livelihoods and community participation (equity).

The DRC has emerged has a strong actor of REDD+ in Africa hosting more than 60% of the rainforest in the Congo Basin and have received the biggest REDD+ funds in Africa. These funds are intended to contribute to improve forest governance towards sustainable forest management practice, forest conservation and poverty alleviation. At the local level where there is day to day access to and use of forest resources, these changes will alter communities forest resource use, their management practices and hence their livelihoods. Therefore communities’ participation in REDD+ is crucial to enhance equity and improve their wellbeing.

Using focus group discussions and interviews, this paper assesses gender participation in forestry and development projects in REDD+ pilot area and the implication for REDD+ implementation. The paper shows that prevailing power relations and social norms shape gender inequalities in these projects. Women are the back bone of the rural economy in the pilot area given their knowledge and activities in the forest. Household division of labor and limited capacities hinder women participation in project activities and the benefits streams. Likewise the repertories of domination by men based on social norms enhance men inclusion, management and hence benefits from the projects. The paper noticed that the education of women, exposures to opportunities and social networks is progressively challenging the social norms and practice of men domination in decision making and management. The paper recommend that for REDD+ to ensure effective and full participation at the local level, it is crucial to understand gender difference in use, knowledge and control over forest resources. In particular, household division of labor is important and women’s capacities and networks must be strengthened to enable them to participate substantively in REDD+.

 Darley Jose Kjosavik

Co-authors: Rosemary Agbefu & Rosemond Agbefu

Paying our way out of Climate Change? A Study of Compensation Preferences of Cocoa Farmers in a REDD+ Pilot in Aowin District, Ghana

Ghana is in the process of getting ready to implement REDD+ interventions lead by the Ghana Forestry Commission. REDD+ is envisaged to work by compensating communities for avoided deforestation. Therefore, an understanding of communities’ preferences for compensation is important to work out compensation packages that are meaningful for the community and that will enhance their livelihoods and contribute positively to their socio-economic and political conditions of existence. This study was undertaken in a REDD pilot area in the Aowin district in south west Ghana with the objective of understanding the kind of compensations the community members aspire to, in return for avoiding deforestation and refraining from livelihood activities that could potentially lead to forest degradation, as well as for undertaking other positive mitigation activities. The study based on FGDs examined the preferences of communities divided into groups on the basis of gender and ethnicity and found significant differences. The indigenes/native ethnic groups were mostly in favour of a combination of individual and community compensations, while the in-migrants mostly favoured individual cash compensation. They were concerned about their future as the land belongs mostly to the native ethnic groups. The implementation of REDD could have consequences for their future, both in terms of access to land as well as livelihoods.

The gender-based differences also came through in the study. Women in general were concerned about the REDD process being inclusive of all community members as well as future generations. This also highlights the importance of taking into account future generations when thinking through REDD compensations. The community’s preferences for compensation are highly varied, context specific and nuanced. This is indeed a challenge in planning compensation packages. Conflicts and uncertainties could arise, especially where communities are heterogeneous, e.g. where migrants, indigenes and different ethnic groups with different levels of forest dependence co-exist. This study highlights the complexity of the issue of compensation and the ethical and moral dimensions of REDD+ – both at a policy level as well as at the empirical level of implementation. This is going to have an impact, in one way or other, on a large number of people, largely in the margins of the global political economy of climate change.

Grete Benjaminsen

The Bricolage of REDD+ in Zanzibar: From International Environmental Policy to Community Forest Management

The Reduction of Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) is one example of an international environmental policy designed to address challenges conceived as significant global environmental problems. With the focus on tropical forests and their role in carbon sequestration, REDD+ has been celebrated as a new and fresh approach to mitigating global warming, as well as a potential change-maker for forest governance in the global South. The grand efforts invested into designing large, ambitious governance regimes such as REDD are however challenged in scholarly debates about ‘the manageability of society’ and the notion that societies’ and peoples’ conduct may be improved just by taking certain technical and institutional measures (see for instance Rose, 1996, Scott, 1998, Green, 2009). Mosse (2005, 2014) also urges for an increased awareness of the relationship between policy models and the practices these models are expected to motivate and legitimise. He asks a rhetorical question: ‘What if, instead of policy producing practice, practices produce policy, in the sense that actors in development devote their energies to maintain coherent representations regardless of events’ (Mosse, 2005: 2).

This article is based on ethnographic fieldwork among different actors involved in the implementation of REDD+ at various levels in the Zanzibari society. The concept of institutional bricolage (Cleaver, 2012) is applied to investigate what happens when REDD+ moves from global policy rhetoric to practical implementation and practice in Zanzibar. With reference to the assumptions underpinning REDD+ and the scenarios and ultimate practices REDD+ seeks to motivate when implemented locally, the article seeks to explore how local actors experience, interpret and give meaning to REDD+ through pragmatic adaptations and processes of reinvention. The article seeks to demonstrate how REDD+ instead of becoming a change- maker for forest governance of Zanzibar, ends up reproducing local practices similar to earlier efforts within the forestry sector in Zanzibar, as well as colonial/post-colonial power asymmetries at international level.

Mary Nantongo

Transaction Costs for Establishing Governance Structures for REDD+: Lessons from Tanzania and Brazil

Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) has been a central element in climate negotiations for a future climate regime. REDD+ concerns transfers of payments from the North to developing countries in the South in exchange for reducing or halting deforestation and forest degradation. In several developing countries, implementation of REDD+ has started by way of pilot projects mostly managed by non-governmental organizations (NGOs). These pilots are meant to provide lessons to the national level processes.

When REDD+ was first introduced, its most attractive feature was that it could offer significant emission reductions cheaply. But could it be that the cost of establishing the necessary governance structures was grossly underestimated? First, implementation involves tremendous coordination efforts among stakeholders at different levels. Second, it requires establishing new or adapting existing governance structures to motivate forest users to change land use practices. In addition, it is necessary to collect relevant information for measuring, reporting and verifying (MRV) changes in forest carbon stocks and to define who is eligible for compensation in order to make payments possible. All of these changes are quite costly.

This paper assesses and compares the transaction costs – i.e., the costs of setting up the necessary governance structures for REDD+ and managing the program – for two pilots: the RDS Rio Negro in Brazil and Kilosa REDD+ pilot project in Tanzania. The paper answers the following questions:

1)         What are the costs of implementing REDD+ functions such as planning, administration, building institutions and Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)?

2)         How do the costs of establishing and running REDD+ projects vary between different REDD+ regimes?

3)         How are these costs distributed among the involved actors i.e., NGOs, households and communities?

The main source of data was audited accounts from the NGOs and interviews with field personnel and accounting officers. In addition, focus groups discussions were held and interviews conducted with the leaders.

We find that transactions costs vary substantially depending on institutional requirements for setting up and running REDD+. Most of the costs are incurred by the NGO while the local people finance only a small portion of the cost.

Leif Tore Trædal

Forest Sector Policy Reforms in Vietnam: From State to Market – What’s News?

The topic of the paper is forest sector policy reforms in Vietnam, including approaches and rationales for changes made. Key words are from state to market approaches (read: PES/REDD+) in forest management. And we ask the rhetorical question: What’s really news?

The study has applied several approaches in collecting data, including in-depth interviews with policy makers and implementers, review of policy documents, and last but not least, a larger survey, including about 200 households in two Provinces. This paper is based on 100 interviews carried out in one of the study provinces, namely in the Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands of Vietnam where many farmers have been introduced to the new Payment for Forest Environmental Services (PFES) program. Through the PFES farmers are paid for conserving forests of importance to key environmental services. In most cases it involves hydropower (state) companies paying for forests’ retaining capacities of water. The same model (payment scheme, etc.) is planned to be used for the national REDD+ program.

Even though the new approaches are framed as new, farmers in the area still relate to the same administrative structures as before. Furthermore, there is low awareness of the rationales behind the new PFES program, and the risk of local leakage and ‘business-as-usual’ seems high. Lack of high-productive agricultural land is the main problem farmers face, and expanding into the forest zone is their only alternative. If agricultural expansion is not done in what is defined as the PFES zone, it will occur in other forest zones.

The PFES program is frequently not framed as an environmental program by policy makers, implementers and beneficiaries.  Preliminary findings both from interviews with policy makers at national, provincial, and commune levels, and with households, suggest that PFES is not merely considered as a tool to solve environmental problems, but more than that a tool for poverty reduction. Protection and PES contracts are perceived and framed as labor contracts more than anything else. Farmers do not get paid for performance, meaning that there is a flat payment rate regardless of the functioning or importance of the forest they possess. The richer Kinh households are not qualified as beneficiaries of PES, regardless of whether they have access to areas of importance for the ecosystem services of importance. An alternative interpretation of the PFES is as a political tool of control of ethnic minority groups in the country. The paper aims at investigating the more political and narrative dimensions of the PFES and other forest sector payment schemes in the Central Highlands of Vietnam.

Cecilie Hirsch

Inclusions and Exclusions in Forest Governance and Policies in Bolivia

This article looks at inclusions and exclusions of actors, ideas and knowledge in the making of a new legal framework for forests in Bolivia, and the priorities being made for nature, landscapes and social groups. The forestry sector in Bolivia was reformed with the Forestry Law in 1996, involving both a decentralization and privatization of the forest sector. With a new constitution from 2009 and pressure from a variety of groups, the forest sector is being reshaped, with new alliances and forms of knowledge emerging. With a strong NGO sector, a more engaged state, organized forest communities, donors and private sector interests, the battle for the forests is taking place at various arenas.

In this article we analyse how and why particular knowledge and understandings of the forests are privileged, institutionalized, contested and changed in forest policies, laws and efforts, and the role of power and discourse in access to and control over forest with conflicting knowledge-claims. Knowledge is here seen as non-static and hybrid with a plurality of interests, perceptions, positions and rationalities. This paper is based on 6 months of multi-sited fieldwork in Bolivia in the time period 2011-2013, combined with analysis of documents concerning inputs for a new forest law and forest efforts.

 

 

Positionality, Trust and Power Asymmetries in Fieldwork

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.325, 09:00-10:30

 When we as researchers do fieldwork, we encounter a range of dilemmas related to power asymmetries, knowledge production and different expectations. In this panel, we look at topics of positionality and e.g. how gender, ethnicity and class affect our fieldwork, the relations between researcher and informant, and the knowledge produced in research. We analyse the dissonant expectations in meetings between the researcher and the respondent, issues of trust and self-representation, the presentation and representation of informants and different cultures when writing ethnography, and the methodological challenges that these lead to.

How does it affect the fieldwork do be a white pregnant women in rural India? How does it affect the research to be a foreigner in an indigenous mobilization in Bolivia? How to analyse “narratives of the self” among refugees in Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda? How to balance the dual role as a researcher and a practitioner in action research? What are the ethical challenges encountered in the writing process – and in the effort of ‘representing the culture of the project’?

How do we create a platform of trust and equality in research relations? How can we deal with these issues methodologically?

Participants

Karina Standal, Centre for Development and Environment, University of Oslo

Between the Body and the Field: Reflections on Doing Fieldwork in Rural India as a Pregnant Researcher

Ingunn Bjørkhaug, Fafo

Who Are We? Methodological Challenges in the Field of Refugee Studies

Grete Benjaminsen, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Writing the Ethnography of a Project: Manoeuvring Through Ethical Challenges

Hanne Cecilie Geirbo, University of Oslo

Enacting Research and Being Enacted as a Strategic Asset – Reflections on Positionality and Embodiment in Action Research

Cecilie Hirsch, Centre for Development and Environment, University of Oslo/Norwegian University of Life Sciences:

On Whose Side? Dilemmas in the Field and Studies of Resistance and Contestations Among Indigenous Organizations in Bolivia

Panel Chair: Cecilie Hirsch

Abstracts

Karina Standal

Between the Body and the Field: Reflections on Doing Fieldwork in Rural India as a Pregnant Researcher

This article aims to help researchers understand the impacts gender, ethnicity and life situations have on knowledge production and power asymmetries in research relations. In this article I discuss my experiences and dilemmas of doing fieldwork as a pregnant, western woman scholar with my family in villages in Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh in India. My informants met my husband and son, and I was pregnant in my 2nd trimester. This altered in many ways my relationship with my woman informants, because I was not just a foreigner with a degree coming to talk to them, but a mother sharing in the same worries and pleasures of womanhood. In many ways this created a shared and equal platform between us that opened up many windows of information, while it naturally shut others. This article reflects on the importance of positionality, reflexivity and relations of power in doing research, and the need for us as researchers to understand the strengths and weaknesses this has on the knowledge we acquire and produce.

Ingunn Bjørkhaug

Who Are We? Methodological Challenges in the Field of Refugee Studies

‘Who we are’, and ‘who the respondent wants us to be’, is a methodological issue that should be taken into consideration when conducting studies among vulnerable populations. This paper is based on the author’s experiences of conducting qualitative research among refugees and host populations in Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda. The refugees are in many ways socialized into an environment where the perception is that ‘the best story’, e.g. the most tearful narrative, is most likely to further your interests. With the ultimate goal being re-settlement or avoid being repatriated (e.g. the Rwandese), this entails that for many of the refugees presenting themselves as most vulnerable and needed have become almost a daily ritual. This is not only a challenge for independent research, but also one of the main challenges for humanitarian actors in Nakivale. When the refugees feel that their stories are not heard and thereby they and their needs are not seen, they might exaggerate in order to try to achieve this type of visibility. They compete in an environment where people share traumatic experiences and it is only natural that each wants to bring their case forward. Good stories are therefore in demand, and outside the OPM office in Kampala there are ‘authors’(called ‘case workers’); writers, who for about 100 USD will design tailor-made individual narratives of being in uttermost need of something (e.g. resettlement, non-repatriation, extra benefits etc.).

The dissonant expectations between the researcher and the respondent open up for methodological challenges in the field. The paper discusses how these methodological changes should be dealt with through information and trust between the researcher and the respondent. However, it also discusses how the ‘narrative of the self’ should be analysed as the stories are told by the respondent. The life-histories should rather be analysed through the lens of who the respondents seek to portray themselves as.

Grete Benjaminsen

Writing the Ethnography of a Project: Manoeuvring Through Ethical Challenges

Ethnography is ‘a written representation of culture’ (Van Maanen, 2011: 1). When doing ethnographic fieldwork, one immerses one-self in the setting, and over time one start to see, hear, feel and come to understand the ‘realities’ of the informants (ibid.). As a PhD student I have conducted a one year’s fieldwork among Zanzibari various actors involved in the ‘politics’ of implementing a Norwegian-funded REDD project. I have had access to meetings and informal discussions among women and men in one particular community that was part of the project; between the community and the project team; within the agencies responsible for implementing REDD at village – and policy levels; as well as institutions and individuals more peripheral to the REDD process on Zanzibar. As many of us studying and writing about development and environment I have come across diverging interests; struggles of meanings; asymmetric power-relations and processes of marginalization. Writing ethnography calls for serious intellectual and moral responsibility of the writer (Van Maanen, 2011). In this paper I identify, explore and discuss some of the ethical challenges encountered in the writing process – and in the effort of ‘representing the culture of the project’.

Hanne Cecilie Geirbo

Enacting Research and Being Enacted as a Strategic Asset – Reflections on Positionality and Embodiment in Action Research

The paper will reflect on the challenges of embodying the dual role as a researcher and a practitioner in action research. It will be based on my experience as an action researcher participating in developing a solar-based electricity grid in a village in Bangladesh, and will discuss how I was simultaneously enacting research and being enacted by the village partner as a strategic asset in his positioning as a businessman and politician. When my movements were under the control of the village partner, he could enact my conspicuous foreign body as a strategic asset. However, my enactment of research required me to occasionally move outside his control, and the attention I attracted was sometimes evoking frictions that were disturbing his political and economic strategies and also to some extent disturbing the stability of the infrastructure I was involved in developing. Similar dilemmas are well known in research in the Global South, but I will argue that it is especially pertinent to reflect on these issues in the context of action research where the researcher influences the implementation of a valuable asset, such as an electricity grid.

Cecilie Hirsch

On Whose Side? Dilemmas in the Field and Studies of Resistance and Contestations Among Indigenous Organizations in Bolivia

This article is based on fieldwork in Bolivia in 2011-2013, where I have followed a number of indigenous mobilizations. In field I was faced with a variety of dilemmas, as I was following indigenous organizations and the Bolivian authorities in conflict with each other and internally. In the indigenous mobilizations I was often perceived as an activist, and at times in opposition to the state, whereas my interviews and fieldwork also included engaging with state bureaucracies and government officials. As the government expressed skepticism to foreign activists’ presence in the indigenous mobilizations, I had to keep a low profile when participating in and observing the events. The article discusses issues of trust, transparency and positionality in research.

 

 

Localizing Peace

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.329, 09:00 – 10:30

 This panel seeks to generate reflections about how to localize and contextualise the practice of peace and peacebuilding. It focuses on what local thinking, practices and communities may bring to the understanding of and responses to conflict.The orthodox approach to peacebuilding is considered top-down, securitised, state-centric, unidirectional and Western-dominated. This approach does not only silence locally articulated needs and priorities, but it has also had mixed outcomes. Engagement with multiple actors at multiple levels, which legitimises local understandings of peace, is the surest way of uncovering alternatives to peacebuilding and re-tooling peace work to better match everyday peoples’ concerns.

The panel is particularly interested in papers that problematize the term local in peacebuilding, highlight the involvement of multiple partiesin the construction of peace, and address local dimensions of peacebuilding programmes.

 Participants

Percy Oware, University of Tromsø

Women and Grassroots Peace Initiatives in Liberia

 Lodve Svare, University of Tromsø

Peace for Whom? Sri Lanka’s Victorious Peacebuilding After 2009

 Randolph Wallace Rhea, University of Tromsø

Disarmament, Demobilization & Reintegration: Paradigms and Paradoxes of Research and Programming

 Panel Chair: Percy Oware

 

 

What do we Learn From ‘Shared’ Research Projects?

Thursday October 2nd

Auditorium 2, 09:00-10:30

 Since Jean Rouch’s innovative ethnographic film projects in Niger in the 1960s, where he included his informants as research partners, have the ideal of shared anthropology been discussed as a strategy to deconstruct power positions, develop cross-cultural dialogue and assure ‘experience near’ descriptions in researching ‘the other’. Sharing experience through developing a research project and discussing the visual representations of situations are fruitful for educating the gaze, de-construct communicative barriers and build knowledge. Shared anthropology has been perceived as a strategy to come to terms with “the other’s” point of view.

Based on various research projects that have used film as an important component for collecting material and communicating results, in the South and in the North (Ethiopia, Tanzania, Mozambique, Cameroon and Northern Norway), the panel will discuss what we can learn from shared research strategies.

The panel will be open for contributions from researchers who have experience from all kinds of shared research strategies.

Film clips and other visual presentations are welcomed as part of presentations.

Participants

Frode Storaas, University of Bergen

Whose Voices?

Trond Waage, University of Tromsø

TRUST: A Film Project of Refugees Settling in Urban-Cameroon

Thera Mjaaland, University of Bergen

Ethiopian Encounters: Power and Agency in Development Research

Britt Kramvig & Rachel Andersen, University of Tromsø

Dreamland

Panel Chair: Frode Storaas & Trond Waage

Abstracts

Frode Storaas

Whose Voices?

Most documentary filmmakers have an agenda when they start on a film-project. They want to tell something and the film is thus based on the filmmaker’s concerns. An anthropological project will try to catch peoples’ concerns, their worldview and so on. The aim of anthropological fieldwork is to be pervaded by the field through opening all senses to get an understanding of what goes on. Time spent in the field will be decisive. What an anthropologist may end up telling with a film, is a story evolved from the meeting with people in the field and not from a manuscript.

Reflexivity, subjectivity, authenticity, realism and polyphony are recurrent themes for anthropologists interested in film and film-makers interested in anthropology. Polyphony is a term used for giving voice to the study subjects, but the term points to the situation of the many voices involved in a film project. With the help of concepts like these I will look at some of my own film projects.​

Trond Waage

TRUST: A Film Project of Refugees Settling in Urban-Cameroon

Young men and women are coming in increased numbers to African cities. Ngaoundéré in Northern Cameroon is one of these cities. The reasons for coming are many. Over the last years, people from the Central African Republic come in great numbers due to conflicts in the country. Many of those arriving do not have any network, any place to stay or any money. They meet a difficult and somehow harsh life; in poverty and with drugs and criminality as nearby challenges.

In a film project have I follow the life of a group of young men originated from the Central African Republic who are trying to make a living by transporting water in jerry cans in a Muslim neighbourhood. To get access to handcarts and clients they must gain trust, by other water transporters and by the citizens.   If distrusted, the reputation needed for getting access to work is spoiled and the future is not promising.

This paper will dwell on questions like: On whose terms is trust developed? Who can you put your trust in someone? What is the rationale behind trust relations? And what happens when the filmmaker challenges their network of trusted relations? I will argue that consequences of trusting someone might have many unforeseen consequences. A few clips from the film ‘Our Struggle’ will be screened.

 Thera Mjaaland

Ethiopian Encounters: Power and Agency in Development Research

Interpreted from the colonial perspective of power, archival photographs relating to the portrait tradition have received a lot of attention over the past couple of decades. However, photographing in the Tigrayan context of highland Ethiopia has meant being obliged to share authority with a people who have demanded to take control over their own self-representation. In my photographic portrait series Ethiopian Encounters, which traverses the fields of art and anthropology alike, I came to understand portrait photography as a discursive social practice that pointed to socio-cultural dynamics that were not explicitly expressed in daily life. The methodological strategy, which provided access to the mediation of visibility and invisibility, exposure and containment in social life, is based on a repositioning of the photographing anthropologist from a detached observer to a social agent in a photographic encounter. I will use this encounter in the photographic situation as a point of departure for discussing power and agency in relation to cross-cultural communication in development research in the case of education. At issue is also the fact that, when required to anonymise interviewees and participants, it becomes difficult to acknowledge peoples contributions to our research, which in itself could be seen as a reaffirmation of an asymmetrical power relation.

Britt Kramvig & Rachel Andersen

Dreamland

What words and what practices do we need in order to work across different knowledge-traditions? Does the documentary-film perform a reality that can be shared or make the crossing between differences, more available? Does it built upon shared experience: or does the film bring together differences in ways that we need to talk about, to play with as well as to re-conceptualize? This presentation will reflect upon filmmaking as assembling differences, as conceptual politics as well as remembering and by that reconciliation. This presentation built upon the ongoing film project Dreamland; that are part of the HERA Arctic encounter research project. We will screen short stories from the film as well as reflect upon how the process of bringing film and science together, can be articulated.

 

 

Cross-Cultural Communication, Experience and the Importance of Ethnographic Work: How Development Research can Contribute to the Area of Integration

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.343, 09:00-10:30

 In the field of development the difficulty of communicating complex realities into a development debate is a recurring subject. The complexity of lived experience seems to complicate the picture to the extent that action is difficult. The development field turns to more generalized knowledge, as a background for policies and strategies for intervention, believed to work irrespective of specific local contexts. The result is often a framing of interpretations in one scheme, ignoring the importance of understanding how different life-worlds are produced and reproduced through everyday lives.

We argue that a similar situation is found in the area of integration work and policy in Norway, which is why development research can be productive also for the Norwegian integration debate.  The increasing presence of the South in the North encompasses mobile and trans-local lives – resulting not only from conflicts or forced migration but also by a perception of structures of opportunities existing in the North. As a result, Northern countries are grappling with complicated questions of integration of new citizens from the Global South.

In this session we welcome papers discussing different aspects of cross-cultural communication across a North-South understanding, and how working in an increasingly trans-local world require new perspectives into the integration debate in Norway. We are highlighting the importance of acknowledging mobile lives and the importance of ethnographic work in order to understand and communicate complex realities into an overall integration debate and we particularly welcome papers who acknowledge or criticize such a perspective.

Participants

Øyvind Økland, University of Agder

Norwegian-Somali Youth in the Diaspora as Translocal Lives

Ingunn Kvamme & May-Linda Magnussen, Agder Research

Institutional Ethnography as a Tool to Critical Perspectives on Norwegian Integration Policies

Hanne Haaland & Hege Wallevik, University of Agder

“The South in the North”: How Ethnographic Field Work and a Broader Understanding of Development Studies can Contribute to the Norwegian Integration Debates

Panel Chair: Hanne Haaland & Hege Wallevik

Abstracts

Øyvind Økland

Norwegian-Somali Youth in the Diaspora as Translocal Lives

The Somalis have become one of the biggest refugee groups in Norway the last decade or two. Referring to a study of young Somalis in Norway, and how they relate to the Norwegian culture, the homeland culture and the diaspora culture, and in addition how they relate to, and use, different media, I will discuss how one has to look at the culture concept in such a setting. How should one relate to local, global and even translocal culture in a world of extensive migration and globalization? In doing this, the paper claims that it is crucial to use media as an important part of culture, and that media must be understood in a global context. In the same way, it is fundamental to see culture as territorialized as well as deterritorialized.

Ingunn Kvamme & May-Linda Magnussen

Institutional Ethnography as a Tool to Critical Perspectives on Norwegian Integration Policies

In this paper, we will show how sociologist Dorothy Smith’s Institutional Ethnography (IE), while building on key ethnographic insights, widens the scope of ethnographic work. In IE, the ethnographic exploration enters large institutions in so-called modern societies and also includes the ethnographic studying of institutional language and texts. Even if Smith acknowledges the importance of starting all exploration of the social in people’s everyday lives, she wants us to move from what she calls local sites and show how what happens there is “hooked up with” things going on in institutional relations – without ever losing sight of people and social relations. Indeed, she wants us to see that even what we may call “systems” actually are and should be studied as extra-local social relations, going beyond local sites and influencing what happens in multiple sites.

We will present IE research through a case. The empirical background is that there has often been a lack of immigrant perspectives in Norwegian immigrant integration research. Using the IE approach, we explore how Afghan immigrant women in a Norwegian municipality deal with paid work life. To ensure the immigrant perspective, the starting point of the study is the Afghan women. We describe both what the Afghan women and other involved actors do throughout these processes, and how they relate to each other. As part of this exploration, we also need to consider the Afghan women’s past experiences with making a living in Afghanistan. Our aim is to understand how different parts of the municipality, the local community more generally and especially institutional actors play a part in these women’s processes of “getting a job”. Finally, we intend to link the local context of this case to Norwegian immigration politics and discuss how the research findings relate to the discourse on integration of ethnic minorities in Norway.

Hanne Haaland & Hege Wallevik

“The South in the North”: How Ethnographic Field Work and a Broader Understanding of Development Studies can Contribute to the Norwegian Integration Debates

Patterns of power worldwide are continuously changing. The traditional North – South divide conventionally portrayed within development studies has become increasingly blurred with new actors emerging on the scene (eg the BRICS) and with increasing poverty and inequality in the so-called North. A flux of people moving from countries in the South to the North creates new inter-linkages between countries and new challenges in recipient countries in terms of integration of new citizens in working life as well as in social life.

In this paper we discuss how a broader understanding of the field of development through the concept of “the South in the North” can enrich integration work at home (Norway). We discuss the need to increasingly acknowledge how immigrants from the so-called South live trans-local lives based on different geographies and contexts, although they have gained Norwegian residency. Based on field work from Vest-Agder (Norway) among immigrant women we argue how experience from ethnographic research in countries in the Global South can provide better insight into trans-local lives and priorities of immigrants. Ethnographic fieldwork from the South do not only provide insights into and knowledge of different cultures and contexts, it also provides an understanding of what it means to be an outsider, trying to work ones way into a new culture and new ways of interacting and communicating. This embodied experience of exclusion combined with a general understanding of social structures and interaction is valuable also for integration work in Norway and represent a strong argument for why we need to think of development studies and research in broader terms.

 

 

Master’s Panel

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.333, 09:00-10:30

 This panel will give current masters students the opportunity to present their own research.

Participants

Sandra Bogdanova, University of Tromsø, Centre for Sami Studies

The Continuity and Change of the Ancient Use of Pinus Sylvestris L. (Scots Pine) Bark for Food by Sámi People in Anár/Inari Communities of Northern Finland

Iselin Kaspersen, University of Tromsø, Centre for Peace Studies

The Norwegian Soldier – A Warrior or a Strategic Corporal?

Léa Klaue, University of Tromsø, Visual Cultural Studies

NATs – Another Perspective on Child Labour in Bolivia

Panel Chair: Torjer Olsen, University of Tromsø, Centre for Sami Studies

Abstracts

Sandra Bogdanova

The Continuity and Change of the Ancient Use of Pinus Sylvestris L. (Scots Pine) Bark for Food by Sámi People in Anár/Inari Communities of Northern Finland

The focus of my project is the acknowledgement of traditional knowledge through cross-cultural communication. I am choosing to examine the relationship between cross-cultural communication and traditional knowledge through the ancient tradition of Pinus sylvestris L. (Scots pine) bark-peeling. Among the Sámi communities around Inari/Anár/Aanaar Lake in northern Finland and other peoples of the North, the act of peeling the bark from Scots pine is known as bast, or pettu (Finnish), guolmmas (North Sámi), piets (Skolt Sámi), kuolmâsleibi (Inari Sámi). But on whose terms is knowledge about the bark-peeling tradition being built and developed?

In the Sámi food economy, pine bark has been used in diverse ways – not only as a form of bread in times of famine. Earlier, the Sámi considered pine bark as a health food. An interdisciplinary approach to the subject aims to draw from the forest history of this particular region. Primarily I will be analyzing archaeological records, textual data, archival images and local exhibitions; I will touch upon the complex Forest Sámi issue and the cultural dynamics of this notion. Hopefully, the project will contribute to informing the encounters between peoples in the North as well as revitalizing the tradition to a greater degree through cooperation among local indigenous institutions.

Iselin Kaspersen

The Norwegian Soldier – A Warrior or a Strategic Corporal?

Counterinsurgency operations, argued to mainly be fought and won at the tactical level, has the population as the center of gravity instead of a conventional enemy-driven kinetic approach. This implies a decentralization of power where soldiers’ actions on the ground are an essential prerequisite to win the population and further to achieve the strategic aimed end-state. It also represents a shift in soldiers’ roles on the ground, as soldiers now face operations that include humanitarian-, peacekeeping and psychological efforts, soft-effects, while also running the risk of full-combat operations on a battlefield that is situated amongst the people.

To master counterinsurgency operations, which has been called the graduate form of warfare, implies the existence of junior officer who understand this population-centric approach, and act accordingly, and reflects the role of soldiers which General Charles C. Krulak coined as the Strategic Corporal in 1999. This seems challenging on at least two accounts. On one hand these tasks seems to deviate from the traditional Warrior ethos, both perceived amongst soldiers and by society at large. On the other hand, a conventional Warrior ethos seems to be enforced by the existence of a post-Cold War focus within Western military training and recruitment strategies. Having a Warrior ethos locked within the conventional domain might impede soldiers from conducting operations within the population-centric approach, thus inhibiting successful COIN, to win the populations hearts and minds.

This study seeks to understand how the Norwegian professional soldier experience and understand their part in Counterinsurgency operations. Through a qualitative study of Norwegian soldiers with experience on the tactical level from Afghanistan, this study seeks to map out which, if any, of the skills put forth by General Charles C. Krulak notion of The Strategic Corporal, enhanced through interlinked requirements from the latest Norwegian Joint Operational Doctrine (FFOD 2007) and NATO’s Allied Joint Publication on Counterinsurgency (AJP 3.4.4. 2011), can be identified within Norwegian professional soldiers. The study further seeks to understand if preconceptions about ‘the Warrior’ hampers or alters an efficient population-centric approach, and if this can be viewed as a hindrance enhanced through either or both a military or societal discourse, driving junior officers to prefer kinetic means in favor for more suitable soft-effects.

Léa Klaue

NATs – Another Perspective on Child Labour in Bolivia

My master thesis fieldwork in visual anthropology was held this summer in Bolivia. In July the Bolivian state promulgated a new children’s act, which among other things recognize and protects work executed by children – with some exceptions – from 10 years old on. My fieldwork research and filming was held among different working children and members of the UNATSBO, Bolivia’s working children’s union. This peculiar union defends children’s right to work with dignity, in opposition to international authorities who hold an “eradicating” position towards child labour. I analyze the children’s perception on their work but also the key roles that social institutions and international actors such as NGOs play in this discourse.

 

 

Education and Social Justice

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.325, 13:30-15:00

Participants

Jennifer Hays, University of Tromsø

Conversations About Education: Research, Development and the Village Schools in Namibia

Velina Ninkova, University of Tromsø

Measuring the Unmeasurable: Development Research Among the San

Hans Geir Aasmundsen, University of Bergen

The Lausanne Movement and Holistic Mission: A New Approach to Evangelism?

Panel Chair: Jennifer Hays

Abstracts

Jennifer Hays

Conversations About Education: Research, Development and the Village Schools in Namibia

What happens when anthropologists, development organizations, government officials and indigenous community members come together to talk about education in a small town in the Kalahari desert?  The point of departure of this paper is the 2-day International Conference on San Education, held in Tsumkwe, Namibia, in June 2014, sponsored by the Norwegian organization Namibiaforeningen – known locally as NAMAS (the Namibia Association of Norway).  A cast of assorted characters representing the categories listed above and others gathered to discuss educational problems and solutions for San communities in Namibia, with particular attention to the Nyae Nyae community, and their Village Schools.  The schools began as a community-based mother tongue education initiative in 1992, developed by anthropologists, linguists and educationalists in collaboration with the community, and are now run by the Namibian Ministry of Education, with support from NAMAS.  The conference, titled Ancient Wisdom, Modern Perspectives: Parent and Community involvement in Education and Learning, had the aim of stimulating discussion around the complicated issues of San education in a setting that allowed for the participation of the local community – and ultimately agreeing upon steps forward to develop and implement solutions.

This paper presents an analysis of the various discourses weaving through the conference, and highlights the areas in which the goals expressed by various participants merge, and diverge.  I argue that the people who will ultimately define, and decide, whether an approach is “successful” is the community themselves.  What are they saying and to what extent is their voice heard?  What role are anthropologists and other researchers playing in this process?

Velina Ninkova

Measuring the Unmeasurable: Development Research Among the San

The indigenous San of southern Africa are easily some of the most marginalized and most researched people in the world. Historically dispossessed of their land by both Bantu and European settlers, the contemporary former hunter-gatherers participate partially and selectively in the economic, political and social life in their respective countries. One of the most debated arenas of their participation in the wider society has become formal education. International and state bodies alike have spent lots of money, efforts and time on recruiting more and more children into a culturally insensitive and oftentimes hostile system. Currently many San children receive at least several years of education, with more children going through primary education each year, and some making it through the full 12 year cycle of formal education. However, on-ground realities show little payback in terms of employment opportunities for San youths, who feed back into the poverty circle of their parents.

As a result, assessment reports file them as unemployed individuals, living below the poverty line. What these reports fail to account for is the amount of non-measurable resources which most San people have at hand, and which are being highly ignored by authorities. These resources include an extensive kinship network which supports individuals and families through complex sharing and exchange relationships, ranging from distribution of food and other goods, to securing jobs within the encompassing society.

My paper will argue for a broader and more holistic understanding of marginalized people’s resources, and the importance this understanding might have for bodies dealing with policies for empowerment of disempowered people.

Hans Geir Aasmundsen

The Lausanne Movement and Holistic Mission: A New Approach to Evangelism?

The Lausanne Movement was founded by Evangelist Billy Graham in 1974 in Lausanne, Switzerland with the participation of more than 2700 delegates from over 150 countries. Graham had “developed a passion to ‘unite all evangelicals in the common task of the total evangelization of the world.’”  Furthermore, it is stated: “The Church, he believed, had to apply the gospel to the contemporary world, and to work to understand the ideas and values behind rapid changes in society.” The idea was, and still is, based on the founder’s perception of: “the need for a larger, more diverse congress to re-frame Christian mission in a world of social, political, economic, and religious upheaval.” Theologian Joshua Little, in an article about the Movement (2010),  observes how (p.7), in his opinion,  Latin American Evangelicals experienced that “The echoes of liberation theology came to the Lausanne congress, and though the speakers were mostly from the Majority world, Latin America’s presence (including theologians Rene Padilla and Samuel Escobar) brought much-needed perspective.” However, Little points out, the key goal of the movement until very recently, has been “world evangelization” and that this evangelization has meant something in particular (p.8): “If the church’s task is world evangelization, and if evangelism means converting, preaching, teaching, then inevitably the human dimension of care for the poor, reconciliation and justice will be marginalized.” This however, may be changing with the Pentecostal/evangelical community’s increased numerical growth: the lack of social impact is beginning to be a “problem” – and as such something that should be dealt with.  With “holistic mission”, the slogan of the movement: “the whole Church to take the whole gospel to the whole world,”  the “other” side of evangelization, which Greenman refers to as the “human dimensions of care for the poor, reconciliation  and justice” may be taken from the marginal side of evangelization and become part of its main task?  This latter is the main issue to be dealt with in this paper.

 

 

Democracy and Transparency

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.329, 13:30-15:00

Participants

Randi Kaarhus, University of Nordland

Accountability and Responsibility

Raymond Achu Samndong, Norwegian University of Life Science

Local Citizenship in Forestry and Development Interventions in Bikoro Territory (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Anne Margrethe Sønneland, Diakonhjemmet University College

Experiences with Trials Related to Past Serious Human Rights Violations in Argentina and Peru

Panel Chair: Christine Smith-Simonsen, University of Tromsø, Centre for Peace Studies

Abstracts

Randi Kaarhus

Accountability and Responsibility

Accountability and Responsibility: How are they related in development discourses?

During the last decade, the concept of accountability has moved from the margins to the centre in development discourses. This move has been followed by an increasing emphasis on mechanisms and indicators of accountability in development cooperation. Agreements between international aid organisations and states in the South, as well as state-to-state development cooperation and development projects managed by NGOs or civil society, increasingly seek to introduce mechanisms that make the southern partner (more) accountable. The concept of responsibility is, on the other hand, mostly used with reference to other actors and relationships in development, in particular private sector developing Corporate Social Responsibility.

The questions to be addressed here are: How do we as researchers understand and use the concepts of responsibility and accountability? What is the relationship between them? What do we know about how different forms of social responsibility are conceived and practiced “on the ground” in different cultural settings? And finally, is there any – known – relationship between “grounded” social responsibility and operative accountability mechanisms at country/state level?

Raymond Achu Samndong

Local Citizenship in Forestry and Development Interventions in Bikoro Territory (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Substantive citizenship is the ‘ability’ of an individual to influence those who govern. In order to assess this ‘ability’, this study examined the powers of sanction possessed by individuals or groups and the accountability mechanisms at their disposal in three villages in the Bikoro Territory of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). More specifically, the paper examined power relations and the accountability of local authorities involved in forestry and development interventions, in order to understand the effects of these interventions on substantive citizenship. The study found that forestry and development agencies chose to partner with identity-based customary authorities and interest-based non-governmental organizations.  These chosen institutions are not directly accountable to the local people, but their partnership with higher level forestry and development agencies gave them public powers over resources.  This placed them in a position of governing those who  use these public resources.  While these empowered local institutions are open to some local influence, local people lack the ability to substantively influence the decisions made by these chosen local institutions – hence they cannot fully engage as citizens. This case study suggests that recognizing identity and or interest-based local institutions by agencies currently promoting carbon forestry in DRC, would exacerbate existing unequal power relations and further narrow inclusive local democracy and effective community participation in decision making processes.

Anne Margrethe Sønneland

Experiences with Trials Related to Past Serious Human Rights Violations in Argentina and Peru

Trials related to serious human rights violations committed by former regimes are currently taking place all over the world, and Latin American countries have been and are at the forefront of such trials.  In many Latin American countries, trials against those responsible have been among the main demands from organisations of victims of serious human rights violations, as well as the human rights movement at large.

One of many interesting questions related to these trials, is how people who have been subject to serious human rights violations experience such trials, and whether or not they find them to be important. Taking the contexts of Argentina and Peru as a starting point, this paper will argue that how people affected by state violence experience and think about these trials has to be understood in light of their struggle for justice through trials and convictions of those responsible.

 

 

Visual Cultural Studies

Thursday October 2nd

Auditorium 2, 13:30-15:00

 First public screening of the documentary film ‘OUR STRUGGLE’ by Trond Waage (2014, 70 minutes)

 An anthropological film on refugees from the Central African Republic living in Cameroon

 Thousands and thousands of people are coming from The Central African Republic (CAR) to its neighboring Cameroon every year. Since the civil war started in CAR (2012) has the flow of people coming to Cameroon exploded.

‘Our Struggle’ is a film stemming from a long lasting research project on runaway kids/refugees from CAR coming to the city of Ngaoundere, in Cameroon. In Ngaoundere are they trying to create a way of living. Since many citizens in urban Cameroon can’t afford running water in their homes, transporting water into people’s homes in jerry cans has become a new job opportunity attracting people that are new to the city. ‘Our Struggle‘ is film about a milieu of men that have come to Ngaoundere, and that have created a way of living departing from a specific water post. The film follows different carriers of young men in their different struggles, trying to get hold of a handcart, getting enough to eat, a place to sleep indoor, taking care of a son, pay taxes and getting their friends out of prison.

The film is about a rapid increasing category of city dwellers that we find all over Africa: youths without education, money or social network. They are living on the margins. Are they falling sick will they rarely have money to go to the hospital, they doing things wrong will they either be put in jail or have to escape. Those escaping are in huge danger for their lives. They are all living dangerous lives.

‘Our Struggle’ tries to portray a milieu of men and women caring for each other, dreaming of a good life in the city.

https://www.facebook.com/miruuwas

Panel Chair: Trond Waage, University of Tromsø, Visual Cultural Studies

 

 

 Administrative Challenges Within North-South Collaboration

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.343, 13:30-15:00

Collaboration always represents challenges, and even more so when collaborating across wide cultural gaps. In such research and competence building projects, collaboration is not only a question of collaboration amongst individual researchers – it also entails collaboration amongst institutions who are recipients of donor funding. This requires good systems for documentation and reporting of the various aspects related not just to indicators of academic output but also detailed reports on the administrative and economic side of the collaboration.

Collaborating partners frequently express frustration over what they experience as an ever-increasing demand for documentation and reporting. Although requirements naturally will be donor driven/demands, they do not take into account the reality of the situation they are faced with. This has especially been expressed by many female partners and researchers involved in the more ‘soft sciences’.

In the panel participants will reflect over and discuss two questions:

1)      What, if any, change related to administration and documentation of North-South collaboration projects has taken place during the last decade?

2)      Is the established systems for quality control of collaborating projects with ‘Southern’ partners seen as relevant – is quality and administration secured?

Participants

Lise Nordbrønd, University of Tromsø, Center for Women’s and Gender Research

Mulumebet Zenebe, Addis Ababa University

Håkon Fottland, University of Tromsø

Panel Chair: Lise Nordbrønd

 

 

On Sami Terms? Local Institutions to Strengthen Local Identity

Thursday October 2nd

Room 1.333, 13:00-14:30

 Focalpoint North (Brennpunkt Nord) is a project at the Centre for Sami Studies financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Norway. In addition to research on the situation for people in the Barents Region, it is a goal to increase cooperation with Sami institutions in the region. The last decades the situation has changed with the establishment of different institutions, such as museums, culture festivals, businesses, language centers, and community. Many of the institutions are small, others are comparatively larger, but all have a role in strengthening Sami language, industry and culture. As such they are representing a minority culture, often suppressed for a long time, and challenging dominant views of culture and society. At the same time, the institutions are giving – and might be criticized for – a presentation of the Sami culture that might be to modern, to traditional, or to challenging compared to peoples own experiences.

The aim of the panel is to invite to a discussion based on the experiences of different Sami institutions, and their contribution to the development of indigenous knowledge, culture and development.  What sort of role do they have in the local community and in a wider context? Which premises have been important for establishing and developing the institutions? What challenges follow from the revitalization of a minority culture?

The panel will consist of people working in different types of institutions, for example museums, centers for documentation and revitalization of languages, and cultural festivals. The aim is to get different opinions, but also to find out whether the institutions share prospects and challenges in their work. Could such institutions and their supportive features be transferred to the South?

Participants

Rachel Djesa, University of Tromsø

“All These Local Institutions!” A Perspective from the South

Johnny-Leo Jernsletten, Tana and Varanger Museumssiida

Tana and Varanger Sámi Siida: Built on Whose Terms?

Bjørg Evjen, University of Tromsø

Becoming Visible Through Establishing an Own Institution: The Pite Sámi

Anna Westman Kuhmunen, Ájtte Swedish Mountain and Sami Museum

Ajtte Museum, Old and New Traditions, On Whose Terms?

Panel Chair: Hans-Kristian Hernes, University of Tromsø

Comments are closed.