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Project COBRA highlighted by European Year for Development

Paulette Allicock

Paulette Allicock, Makushi farmer, North Rupununi, Guyana. Source: Project COBRA. Creative Commons Non-Commerical No Derivatives Licence.

As world leaders meet in Paris to decide on a worldwide agreement to tackle climate change at the Climate Summit, COP21 (21st Conference Of the Parties) this week, the European Year for Development is reminding stakeholders of the inextricable link between climate action, sustainable development and poverty eradication. The EU initiative emphasises that climate change can’t be stopped without working with people facing against poverty, who are already the most affected by climate change, in developing as well as in developed countries.

In this context, an EU-funded project that is empowering Indigenous communities in South America by supporting and strengthening local solutions to conserve forests in the Guiana Shield, led by Dr Jay Mistry, Reader in Geography at Royal Holloway, Continue reading

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Using technology to promote and share community-owned solutions to sustainable resource use

The COBRA Project – Local Solutions to Future Challenges: Community Owned Best Practice for Sustainable Resource Adaptive Management in the Guiana Shield – is a three-year, multinational project funded by the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme. The aim of COBRA is to document, promote and share local community-owned solutions that address escalating social, economic and environmental crises through accessible communication technologies. The main goal of the project is to help strengthen local community institutions while encouraging policy makers and civil society organisations to work with communities to promote local solutions.

Filming the Parishara Dance, Amerindian Heritage Celebration, Surama Village, September 2013. Photo credit: Deirdre Jaferally.

Filming the Parishara Dance, Amerindian Heritage Celebration, Surama Village, September 2013. Photo credit: Deirdre Jaferally.

The COBRA project uses a participatory action research approach to engaging communities while using participatory video and participatory photostories to disseminate information. The project is carried out at three levels – local, national and international. There are six work packages which are led by various project partners. Work Package 1 and 6 are overarching as they relate to project management and dissemination of information. Work package 2 is an analysis of current community conditions, Work package 3 explores future scenarios for drivers of change, Work package 4 looks at identifying and documenting community best practices, while work package 5 looks at the mechanism for sharing and adopting local best practices by other communities. Further details about the project, the work packages and results can be found at the COBRA website at www.projectcobra.org.

Deirdre Jaferally, COBRA Team Member & PhD student, Department of Geography, Royal Holloway.