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IAS Public Lecture – Biodiversity Loss, Land Reform and Sustainable Communities

December 9, 2020 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Public Lecture by Dr Chris Dalglish, Inherit: the Institute for Heritage & Sustainable Human Development

Biodiversity is declining at an unprecedented rate. To deal with this crisis in effective, sustainable and just ways, we must look beyond traditional approaches to conservation.

At the global level, formal approaches to conservation have tended to separate humans and nature, not least by creating ‘protected areas’ or reserves. A fence-and-exclude attitude has also underpinned conservation in the UK.

Such approaches are ineffective in reversing biodiversity loss. They marginalise communities, negatively impacting upon their access to resources, wellbeing and sustainability. They contribute to cultural loss – a loss of knowledge about the local environment and a loss of practices, meanings and values associated with the land.

Many inter-governmental organisations, NGOs and researchers now recognise that conservation should be promoted together with humanitarian goals and the sustainable development of communities and their diverse cultures. The community governance of land – in which people determine their own futures and lead on the conservation and development of their places – is now understood to be central to sustainable development.

Much of the evidence associated with community-led conservation relates to the Global South. But this international evidence can help us to understand the value of community-controlled land for sustainable development here in the UK.

In this lecture, Dr Chris Dalglish will reflect on the international evidence and what it has to say about traditional approaches to conservation in the UK. He will look at the new paths being taken by UK communities, and their public and third sector partners, using examples from Scotland’s growing community land sector.

Dr Dalglish will draw on research on Community Empowerment & Landscape (www.communitylandscotland.org.uk/find-out-more/renewal_repopulation), published in 2018 by Inherit and Community Land Scotland. He will also draw on his ongoing research as an Institute of Advanced Study Fellow, which is linked to Durham’s Negotiating Landscapes of Rights project (www.dur.ac.uk/ias/2021projects/gerrardjones).

This lecture is free and open to all.

The Lecture will take place on Zoom. To register please click here.


December 9, 2020
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
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