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Formas awards SEI three long-term research grants

Three SEI researchers have been awarded long-term funding by the Swedish Research Council Formas to work on climate adaptation, palm-oil production, and social-ecological systems in the Amazon.
Tom Gill / Published on 13 December 2012

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Åsa Persson
Åsa Persson

Research Director and Deputy Director

SEI Headquarters

Rasmus Kløcker Larsen

Team Leader: Rights and Equity

SEI Headquarters

Javier Godar
Javier Godar

Senior Research Fellow

SEI Headquarters

Research fellow Åsa Persson is to lead the project “governance of climate adaptation in a globalised world”, which will focus on the recent rise of adaptation on global agendas, both inside and outside of climate negotiations. It will question the assumption that adaptation is a local concern, and explore the unfolding of a global governance regime around it, as well as analyse how globalization, in particular intensified trade flows in food commodities, affects options for adaptation at the national level.

Project leader Åsa Persson said, “Ultimately, the study will seek a fuller understanding of the impact of globalisation on adaptation so that we can develop real options for better action.”

Partners in the work are likely to include the Australian National University and Macqaurie University, as well as the Earth System Governance Project.

SEI’s research on sustainable palm-oil production will advance under a new four-year project focused on the expanding Philippine palm-oil industry. SEI will pilot new ways to govern market actors and respond to the environmental and social impacts of intensified palm-oil production.

According to project leader and SEI research fellow Rasmus Kløcker Larsen, growth in foreign direct investment and corporate ventures in agricultural regions in the South has undermined democratic accountability, which has contributed to unsustainable and inequitable exploitation of resources.

““Producer countries, especially in Southeast Asia, have struggled to respond to these developments. To enable them to do so, SEI and local partners will test innovative governance arrangements and pursue research that reconnects sustainability standards with international trade law,”” said Larsen.

A third SEI Formas-funded project will generate new insights into into how social ecological systems function in the Amazon region, with links to initiatives under UN-REDD.

Against the backdrop of agrarian reform, climate change and ongoing deforestation, the goal of the work is to build a framework to help regional policymakers make optimal choices between different rural development options.

Project leader Javier Godar said, “Given the current challenges of UN-REDD initiatives in the region, we will specifically focus on how to better adapt UN-REDD mechanisms to the observed actions of stakeholders and the dynamics of social ecological systems.”

Using a social-ecological systems perspective and integrating natural and social sciences, the three-year study will meet the need for information on social and environmental trade-offs in policies for sustainable rural development in Amazonia.

Read more about the Swedish Research Council Formas»

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