Social Science and Land Degradation

Lars Soeftestad, Supras Ltd (interview at UNCCD COP 11)

At UNCCD COP 11 (Windhoek, Namibia, 2013)

I participated in United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) COP 11 (Windhoek, Namibia, 16-27 September 2013) (Notes 1 and 2). I participated on behalf of my consulting firm Supras Ltd., on the invitation of Entico Corporation (see Note 3) and Responding to Climate Change (Note 3). Supras Ltd. is accredited to the UNCCD.

I specifically participated in the meetings of UNCCD's Sustainable Land Management Business Forum (SLMBF), 23-24 September 2013, where I addressed the role of the private sector in engaging with civil society at the local level, in developing as well as in transition countries (Note 4). At the SLMBF meetings at this COP I presented a technical paper, "The private sector in development cooperation: Land management, climate change and social development", that discusses the role of the private sector in sustainable land management (Note 5). Below the identified problematic issues in how the private sector engages with land management are listed (consult the technical paper for details):

  1. Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) and civil society,
  2. Supply and demand,
  3. Baselines,
  4. Target group,
  5. Profit-maximization vs. doing good,
  6. Societal systemic issues,
  7. Role of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs),
  8. Nature of public sector, and
  9. Effects vs. causes.

An interview, titled "Lars Soeftestad: A Social Science Response to Land Degradation", was taped during COP 11. It addresses land degradation from the vantage point of the social sciences (Note 6).
 

Notes
(1) "COP" is an abbreviation for "Conference of the Parties". These are the biennial meetings of the signatories to this Convention.
(2) Photos from COP 11, courtesy Supras Ltd., are available at URL:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/supras/sets/72157640677669333
(3)
Entico Corporation, URL: http://entico.com. Responding to Climate Change (RTCC), URL: http://www.rtcc.org
(4) The Sustainable Land Management Business Forum (SLMBF) was set up at COP 10 (Republic of Korea, 2011). This meeting adopted the Gyeongnam Declaration (URL: https://www.unccd.int/news-events/world-business-leaders-launch-sustainable-land-management-business-forum. Later SLMBF meetings also adopted declarations. I was involved in drafting the one adoptd at COP 11 (it appears not to be available any longer on the UNCCD website). At COP 12 (Turkey, 2015) and at later COPs, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD, https://www.wbcsd.org/) has been responsible for organizing the SLMBF meetings
.
(5) This technical paper was prepared for the meeting of UNCCD's Sustainable Land Management Business Forum (SLMBF), meeting at UNCCD COP 11 (Windhoek, Namibia, September 2013) (see Sources).
(6) The interview was done by Responding to Climate Change (RTCC) and Entico Corporation. Interviewer was Ed King, Editor, RTCC. Availability: Vimeo (Supras' account), Climate Home, and Youtube at (see Sources).
(7) Image credit: Responding to Climate Change (RTCC). Taken from the interview with me by RTCC at UNCCD COP 11 (see Note 5).
(8) Relevant Devblog articles:
(9) Permalink: https://devblog.no/en/article/social-science-response-land-degradation
(10) This article was published 29 August 2017. It was updated 15 December  2019.

Sources
Climate Home. 2013. "Lars Soeftestad: A social science response to land degradation". Interview. URL: https://www.climate-change.tv/9403
Soeftestad, Lars. 2013. "The private sector in development cooperation: Land management, climate change and social development". Supras Briefing Note, no. 5, September 2013. URL 1: https://www.academia.edu/7936921/The_Private_Sector_in_Development_Cooperation_Land_Management_Climate_Change_and_Social_Develop... (note: an account with academia.edu is necessary to access this document). URL 2: http://www.supras.biz/pdf/Supras_2013_379-UNCCD-SLMBF-SocialDev.pdf
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). URL: http://www.unccd.int
Vimeo. 2013. "Lars Soeftestad: A social science response to land degradation". Interview. URL: http://www.vimeo.org/supras
Youtube. 2013. "Lars Soeftestad: A social science response to land degradation". Interview. URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?reload=9&time_continue=276&v=27a6wTYZa98

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