Contested Sustainability: The Political Economy of Conservation and Development in Tanzania

Wednesday 29 September 2021 (15:00-16:30)
Contested sustainabilty image
A giraffe silhouetted against a mountainous backdrop

Contested Sustainability: The Political Economy of Conservation and Development in Tanzania

The IDD Guest Seminar Series is delighted to welcome Professor Dan Brockington (Director of the Sheffield Institute of International Development, University of Sheffield) and Dr Christine Noe (Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geography, University of Dar es Salaam, and co-coordinator of the NEPSUS Project) to present their forthcoming book co-authored with Professor Stefano Ponte (Copenhagen Business School).


Contested Sustainability: The Political Economy of Conservation and Development in Tanzania

New and more complex partnerships are emerging to address the sustainability of natural resource use in the Global South. These partnerships variously link donors, governments, community-based organizations, Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs), business, consultants, certification agencies and other intermediaries. High expectations and many resources have been invested in these initiatives. Yet, we still do not know whether more sophisticated organizational structures, more stakeholders involved, denser social networks and more advanced participatory processes have delivered better sustainability outcomes, and if so, in what sectors and under what circumstances. This talk draws from a 5-year collective research project, New Partnerships for Sustainability (NEPSUS), which assembled a multidisciplinary team to analyze sustainability partnerships in three key natural resource sectors in Tanzania: wildlife, forestry and coastal resources. We will draw principally upon findings from the wildlife sector research to examine the engines of sustainability at work in this sector and the role of different sorts of partnerships in achieving them.

About the Speakers

Dan Brockington is Director of the Sheffield Institute of International Development. He studied for his thesis at UCL with Kathy Homewood and has worked on aspects of natural resource management and livelihood change in East Africa based on long-term fieldwork in remote locations. His books include Celebrity Advocacy and International Development, Fortress Conservation and Nature Unbound (with Rosaleen Duffy and Jim Igoe). He has recently published (with Peter Billie Larson) The Anthropology of Conservation NGOs and (with Seth Schindler and Simin Fadaee) Contemporary Mega-Projects.

Christine Noe is an Associate Professor at the University of Dar es Salaam and Head of the Department of Geography. She trained for her PhD at the University of Cape Town where she graduated in 2009. Her research and teaching are mostly on conservation and development politics, land tenure and rights, and rural livelihood changes. She is currently involved in collaborative research projects on New Partnerships for Sustainability (NEPSUS) (with Copenhagen Business School, Roskilde University, and University of Sheffield); Greenmentality (with Department of International Environment and Development Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences), and Livelihood Change in Tanzania (with University of Sheffield). Her growth as an African scholar, mentor, and research leader benefitted from early involvement in competitive grants. She received the Five College Young African Scholars program (in 2004 at the University of Massachusetts), All Africa House Fellowship (in 2012 at the University of Cape Town), and a Visiting African Fellowship (in 2015/16 at the University of Cambridge). She headed the University of Dar es Salaam’s Directorate of Research and Publication (January 2018–April 2019) where she strengthened her skills on research management. Christine believes that strong collaborations are the foundation on which solid African scholarship can be supported.

The IDD Guest Seminar Series brings scholars and practitioners working on international development to the University of Birmingham to share their latest research and ideas. All seminars are open to staff, students, and the general public. For details of other upcoming seminars please visit IDD's Eventbrite page and follow us on twitter @iddbirmingham. Speakers will present for 45 minutes, followed by 45 minutes for audience Q&A.

Please register if you would like to attend. A Zoom link will be emailed to participants before the event.

This free event is open to all - staff, students, key stakeholders and members of the public.