Agile online platforms and virtual spaces for knowledge-sharing and convening
The Resilience Platform is an online inventory of resilience expertise (organizations, networks, solutions, stories and people) to help design, implement and evaluate the resilience components of development plans, policies and investments. This platform curates proven resilience knowledge, case studies and evidence.
The Resilience Platform is dynamically linked with SEI’s Connectivity Hub through the PLACARD tool – a pilot that is being expanded to partner platforms. The Connectivity Hub is currently dynamically linked various platforms such as WeAdapt, PreventionWeb, etc. to curate knowledge and evidence on Climate Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction. Linking the Resilience Platform to the Connectivity hub brings curated resilience knowledge and evidence to the hub as well.
The coalition is exploring the possibility of creating a virtual space to connect and interact with others to share, build on and amplify insights. The experience of the COVID-19 crisis will be used to ensure grassroots communities are involved and heard, and not “digitally excluded”.
Numerous resilience measurement frameworks for climate programmes have emerged over the past decade to operationalise the concept and aggregate results within and between programmes. Proxies of resilience, including subjective measures using perception data, have been proposed to measure resilience, but there is limited evidence on their validity and use for policy and prac- tice. This article draws on research on the Decentralising Climate Funds project of the Building Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Extremes and Disasters programme, which supports communities in Mali and Senegal to improve climate resilience through locally controlled adap- tation funds. It explores attributes of resilience from this bottom-up perspective to assess its predictors and alignment with food security, as a proxy of well-being. We find different patterns when comparing resilience and the well-being proxy, illustrating that the interplay between the two is still unclear. Results also point to the importance of contextualising resilience, raising impli- cations for aggregating results.
The targets and indicators covered are a mix of what may be described as ‘processes’ and ‘outcomes’. ‘Process’ targets and indicators describe activities that must be undertaken or strengthened to reach more climate-adaptive and resilient societies and ecosystems. Examples of ‘process’ targets and indicators are having adaptation strategies, costed plans and financing in place.
‘Outcome’ targets and indicators describe the state of being demonstrably more climate-adapted, climate- adaptive and/or climate-resilient. An example of an ‘outcome’ targets would be “achieving a 10 per cent reduction in the number of cases of human vector- borne diseases associated with climate change (decadal average) by 2030”.2 There are also targets that are quantifiable and represent at least intermediate outcomes, such as area or proportion of land/sea under effective ecosystem management or restored ecological function (which may have auxiliary species, habitats and ecosystem services indicators associated with them).
Recent concerns over a crisis of identity and legitimacy in community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) have emerged following several decades of documented failure. A substantial literature has developed on the reasons for failure in CBNRM. In this paper, we complement this literature by considering these factors in relation to two successful CBNRM case studies. These cases have distinct differences, one focusing on the conservation of hirola in Kenya on community-held trust land and the other focusing on remnant vegetation conservation from grazing pressure on privately held farm land in Australia. What these cases have in common is that both CBNRM projects were initiated by local communities with strong attachments to their local environments. The projects both represent genuine community initiatives, closely aligned to the original aims of CBNRM. The intrinsically high level of “ownership” held by local residents has proven effective in surviving many challenges which have affected other CBNRM projects: from impacts on local livelihoods to complex governance arrangements involving non-government organizations and research organizations. The cases provide some signs of hope among broader signs of crisis in CBNRM practice.
Approaches to natural resource management emphasise the importance of involving local people and institutions in order to build capacity, limit costs, and achieve environmental sustainability. Governments worldwide, often encouraged by international donors, have formulated devolution policies and legal instruments that provide an enabling environment for devolved natural resource management. However, implementation of these policies reveals serious challenges. This article explores the effects of limited involvement of local people and institutions in policy development and implementation. An in-depth study of the Forest Policy of Malawi and Village Forest Areas in the Lilongwe district provides an example of externally driven policy development which seeks to promote local management of natural resources. The article argues that policy which has weak ownership by national government and does not adequately consider the complexity of local institutions, together with the effects of previous initiatives on them, can create a cumulative legacy through which destructive resource use practices and social conflict may be reinforced. In short, poorly developed and implemented community based natural resource management policies can do considerably more harm than good. Approaches are needed that enable the policy development process to embed an in-depth understanding of local institutions whilst incorporating flexibility to account for their location-specific nature. This demands further research on policy design to enable rigorous identification of positive and negative institutions and ex-ante exploration of the likely effects of different policy interventions.
The manifestation of climate change in the form of extreme weather events is not a new challenge to India. On the contrary, high climate variability and drought have always been endemic to the monsoon belt. Hence, local societies have evolved over time to adopt many ingenious mechanisms to tackle drought risks. Maharashtra is, in this regard, a forerunner in drought risk management in India. The 2012 drought in Maharashtra did not lead to the massive hardships that were seen in the drought of 1972, or earlier, even though crop and income losses of 50% and more were reported among many farmers.
This booklet is based on outcomes from a two-year Indo-Norwegian research and capacity development project titled, ‘Extreme Risks, Vulnerabilities and Community-Based Adaptation in India (EVA)’. The findings draw upon empirical data from rural communities in Jalna District in the drylands region of Marathwada of Maharashtra. The booklet provides assessments of impacts and vulnerabilities to extreme risks of agriculture and water resources and insights into how rural communities have been able to withstand and respond to the recent drought and changes in monsoon patterns. It explains how the government and non-governmental agencies at state and district levels have responded and enabled or constrained community-level initiatives.
The report outlines research approaches utilized to study Community-based Adaptation (CBA). It draws some early lessons about potential avenues for local adaptation strategies to future climate extremes and what considerations and challenges these raise for coordination and convergence in the governance system at local and state levels. The booklet is intended for development practitioners, researchers, and policy-makers interested in climate change and rural development challenges in Maharashtra.