The Specialist Group is intended to encourage exchange of ideas and learning between its members to help promote better understanding of socio-economic issues relating to community interactions with nature. It also aims to show how socio-economic-concepts and methodologies can provide valuable insights into processes assisting or limiting sustainable rural community livelihoods and promoting rural development. Members have backgrounds in agricultural economics, economic anthropology, economic geography, rural development and related fields.
Main Areas of Work
Current group members work, or carry out research on socio-economic aspects of local communities’ relationships with nature in a range of locations including Canada, Southern Africa, South America, the Middle East and Australia. Areas of interest include primary production value chains, economics of agricultural households, characteristics of subsistence economies, development of markets for small-scale food products. Some group members have strong interests in the positive and negative role of hunting and wildlife tourism in contributing to local community economic development. Other members are working in the field of developing niche markets for community-processed wild harvest products. Some members are also assessing ways in which locally-managed marine protected areas, can provide socio-economic benefits to their communities as part of a blue economy approach.
Members recently presented papers on a range of topics relating to Local Economies, Communities and Nature at the Communities, Conservation and Livelihoods Conference in Halifax Nova Scotia, Canada in May 2018.
There are many other forms of socio-economic relationship between communities and nature apart from those mentioned above, and it is hoped that the scope of the group will broaden as new members with different, related interests and experience join the group.
If you are interested in promoting a better understanding of socio-economic issues relating to community interactions with nature, and in helping to show how socio-economic-concepts and methodologies can provide valuable insights to help progress sustainable rural livelihoods and rural development, please do contact the Group lead, Nick Conner and attach your CV.
If you aren’t already a member of CEESP, we hope you will be inspired to join CEESP and the Local Economies, Communities and Nature Specialist Group by filling out this online application https://www.iucn.org/commissions/commission-environmental-economic-and-social-policy/join-ceesp
Membership enables you to become part of the network with the option to contribute as much as you like or as little as your time allows. We look forward to hearing from you.