The Earth Institute’s Haiti Research and Policy Program at the Center on Globalization and Sustainable Development welcomed two distinguished speakers as part of the Spring 2013 Haiti Dialogue Series to discuss government capacity building and national monitoring systems for government funded programs.
Natural Resources and Peacebuilding
Purpose: To share interdisciplinary and innovative perspectives on managing natural resources as part of efforts to stabilize countries after conflict.
Natural resources, including oil, minerals, land, timber and water, are at the center of many countries’ conflicts. Effective, just and sustainable management of those resources is an essential component in restoring stability and fostering well-being. Here, Earth Institute researchers, partners and experts in the international peacebuilding community offer their views on managing natural resources to build peace—on topics such as land reform or delivery of water services, and in consideration of complexities added by climate change impacts, rapid population growth and globalization.
Haiti Dialogue Series: Should funds be more effectively channeled through the Haitian government, a decentralized finance program could help streamline financing and reinforce local government planning efforts. As part of the Haiti Research and Policy Program dialogue series, Tatiana Wah was joined by Leslie Pean to discuss possible approaches to achieving the call for decentralization in Haiti that has been a part of the country’s development plans for decades, with renewed efforts after the 2010 earthquake. Most current international aid and development funding circumvents the government ministries at the national level. The lack of dedicated local budgets, as well as a weak incentive structure to attract or retain skilled professionals who are capable of complex governance, is a considerable hurdle for any decentralization proposal in Haiti.
Haiti Dialog Series: Author Jonathan M. Katz joined the Haiti Research and Policy Program’s dialogue series to discuss his new book and two years reporting on the Haitian recovery after the devastating 2010 earthquake. Katz argues within his book that the international aid money has become a missed opportunity to address core development challenges in Haiti and that the country remains equally vulnerable today as it did prior to January 10th, 2010.
As wildlife trafficking has become more lucrative, widespread and organized over the past few years, the definition of high-value natural resources should be modified to include the commercial values of wildlife and its products.
Peri-urban areas are particularly vulnerable to land use conflicts due to their geographic and socio-economic characteristics: They are transitional zones in transforming societies, where various economic activities associated with each urban setting try to co-exist. In this context, peri-urban agriculture plays a key role for the multiplicity and diversity of stakeholders providing environmental and economic services to urban cities.
In recognition of the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict, Security-General Ban Ki-Moon issued a statement that should be required reading for everyone thinking about the next generation of international development goals.
In Africa, Asia and Latin America, the development of the mining industry
has often been accompanied by violence and community-led social protest. To
halt these protests, young democratic institutions have, in various cases,
turned to authoritarian dogmas. Researcher Dr. Triscritti illustrates how in
Peru these practices are decreasing the chances of reaching durable and
Identifying Teaching and Training Tools on Peacebuilding, Fragile States and Natural Resource Management
The Earth Institute at Columbia University hosted a two-day workshop that brought together practitioners, trainers, and academics to explore innovative approaches to teaching and training on natural resources management in fragile states and peacebuilding contexts. The workshop concluded with a clear statement: current academic and training programs do not provide a coherent methodology for students and practitioners to adequately face the challenges posed by the confluence of fragile states, climate risks, natural resources, conflict, and peacebuilding.
Legislating revenue transparency injects fairness into resource equations, but it remains the map rather than the territory. The deeper dilemma is that we no longer have a language to describe the territory.