Monday, March 31, 2014

Guia para Experiências de Mapeamento Comunitário

As experiências de mapeamento comunitário tem sido cada vez mais utilizadas como forma de reivindicar e assegurar direitos territoriais de povos e comunidades tradicionais.

O presente Guia pretende fornecer elementos que apoie mas comunidades a produzirem seus próprios mapas. Ele contem 12 módulos, cada um com suas unidades constituintes. Os módulos cobrem uma serie de tópicos relacionados como mapeamento comunitário, tais como: antecedentes das práticas de mapeamento, considerações éticas da prática de mapeamento, métodos de mapeamento, efeitos do uso de tecnologias de informação espacial e escolha do método.

A difusão do uso do Guia propõe-se a propiciar que as comunidades tradicionais produzam a representação geográfica, a documentação e os meios de comunicação dos conhecimentos que dispõem sobre seus territórios.

Estas experiências devem desenvolver-se sob o controle das próprias comunidades, permitindo-lhes o dialogo com atores externos para a defesa e a reivindicação dos seus direitos.

Para mais informações ou para a obtenção de cópias do guia, entre em contato

Prof. Henri Acselrad
Instituto de Pesquisa e Planejamento Urbano e Regional da Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

African Court issues historic ruling protecting rights of Kenya's Ogiek Community

In a recent decision the African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights has ruled that the Government of Kenya should "preserve the status quo ante" the orders of eviction of Ogiek community from their ancestral lands in Kenya's Mau Forest.

This is the first time the African Court, in operation since 2006, has intervened to protect the rights of an indigenous community.

‘The Government of Kenya must now fully respect the decision of the Court, which effectively bans land transactions in the Mau Forest Complex,' says Lucy Claridge, MRG's Head of Law.   ‘The court found that, if land transactions continue, there exists a situation of extreme gravity and urgency as well as a risk of irreparable harm to the Ogiek.'

The Mau Forest, one of the main water catchment areas in Kenya, is home to an estimated 15,000 Ogiek families who claim to be indigenous owners of the land. A minority group, the Ogiek have faced, since colonial times, consistent persecution and denial of their land rights, worsening over the last two decades.

Most recently, the Ogiek have been threatened with eviction from their homes in the Eastern Mau, without due consultation, under the guise of protecting the environment. The Ogiek maintain that the forest is most at risk from large-scale logging rather than their own sustainable and traditional practices.

In 2009, frustrated by the lack of progress through national policy and judicial processes, the Ogiek - through MRG, the Ogiek Peoples' Development Programme (OPDP) and Centre for Minority Rights (CEMIRIDE) - decided to file a case with the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights.

In 2012, the Commission referred the matter to the African Court, on the grounds that it evinced serious and mass human rights violations.

In its ruling, the court, based in Arusha, Tanzania, ordered the government of Kenya to halt parceling out land in the disputed forest area until the Court reaches a decision in the matter.

The African Court also ruled that the Kenyan government must refrain from taking any action which would harm the case, until it had reached a decision in the matter.  It reached this decision out of concern that the government's current actions violate the Ogiek's right to enjoyment of their cultural and traditional values, their right to property, as well as their right to economic, social and cultural development, all of which are enshrined in the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights. Kenya is a signatory to the Charter.

‘For many years, the Ogiek have suffered displacement or been threatened with eviction from their ancestral lands, and action is urgently needed to protect their livelihoods, and indeed their survival as an indigenous community. This ruling from the African Court is a positive step towards realization of justice for the Ogiek,' says Daniel Kobei, OPDP's Executive Director.

Adapted from: Minority Rights Group International (MRG)

Additional resources:
  • The Voice of the Ogiek (video)
  • OPAT Atlas (Ogiek Peoples Ancestral Territory Atlas), in Kenya” by Julius Muchemi (ERMIS Africa ) and Albrecht Ehrensperger (University of Bern, Switzerland
    The OPAT Atlas demonstrates the utilization and results of Participatory GIS (PGIS) (results from a mix of Aerial Photograph aided mapping, Participatory 3D Modelling (P3DM), Topographic Map sheets, GPS Survey, etc ) in recording the rights and interests of an Indigenous Peoples living in a highly degraded forest ecosystem and a highly politicized efforts to (i) accord an indigenous people their ancestral rights and interests within Mau Forest Complex, and (ii) restoring a degraded forest of local, national and international importance.
  • Participatory Spatial Information Management and Communication Training Kit

Monday, February 24, 2014

Community Mapping: Finding Stories and Solutions in the Places We Live

Everywhere we go, we find challenges: waste management, poverty, health issues, corruption, drug abuse, fights. The list goes on.

But these challenges are also opportunities for us to act and bring change. In a democracy, we cannot depend on the government to solve all of our problems.

In community mapping, we venture out to different communities to discover what challenges, document their stories using digital media and photography, and explore ways to find solutions.

From July 1-11, 2013, BCMD piloted a community mapping project in Thimphu. 25 youth participated in the mapping of 5 communities: Changzamtog, Hong Kong Market, Changjiji, Motithang, and Changidaphu.

Source: YouTube

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Involving communities in project planning using Participatory 3D modelling (P3DM): the experience of Epi Island, Vanuatu

Senior students of Epi High School felt privileged when they were chosen to construct the model of Epi island using a modeling technique known as Participatory 3 Dimension Modelling (P3DM), as part of a key community consultation process by the Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change (PACC) project on the island of Epi. With the help of students, each community members were able to use tagging pins and colored paper strips to label current physical features on the island as well as map out future developments recommended by each area councils.

Land boundary is a critical challenge in Vanuatu. On Epi alone, such project implementation requires acquisition of land prior to any physical work being carried out. The use of Participatory 3-D modeling gave land owners and area council representative a physical overview of the roading issues. After recognizing the problems and the proposed solutions under the PACC Vanuatu project, the land owners and area council representatives agreed to give ' for free' their land and resources for PACC project implementation on Epi. Under the PACC project where the thematic area is Coastal Infrastructure, the road relocation project is aimed at building resilience and improving access for the people to the main service and commercial center on the island.

The current 72km road from South through West to the North of Epi is located along the coast. A physical feature evident along this road is the continuous erosion of the road due to either heavy downpour resulting in landslides along road sides, , running water drenching the road surface making it difficult to travel on, and ocean waves impact on the road sides, washing away the roads.

Following the successful outcome of the Participatory 3-D model consultation, the PACC team selected VARSU area to commence the road relocation project.The VARSU area council on North Epi is the first community to physically map out a new 10 km road in the interior of the island, with the objective of having climate proof roads that will not be washed away at the coast, and to have better and safe access to markets.


Sunday, December 08, 2013

L'an 2025 de la révolution @gricole

On rapporte qu'Albert Einstein aurait dit : « Je ne pense jamais au futur – il vient bien assez tôt. » Comme il avait raison !

Il ne fait aucun doute que le pouvoir transformatif des TIC nous fait vivre un développement exponentiel !

Tentez l'aventure et embarquez-vous pour l'an 2025 de la révolution @gricole.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Participatory mapping used to monitor illegal logging by the Baka in their ancestral forests

The Baka indigenous people in the forests of the Congo Basin have been using PDAs (personal digital assistants) with built-in global positioning systems (GPS) to collect data (such as sites of illegal logging and felled trees and forest sites of livelihood and cultural importance) in their ancestral forests. They then use this information to make interactive maps of their ancestral forests, to help lobby against illegal logging of the forest. These maps and the data collected can then be used by Cameroon's Ministry of Forests in the fight against illegal logging.

This video was produced by OKANI in April 2011.

Source: FPP

Friday, November 08, 2013

Year 2025 of the @gricultural Revolution

Albert Einstein is quoted having said: “I never think of the future - it comes soon enough.” How true he was!
There is no doubt that the transformative power of ICTs makes us live in exponential times !
Let’s give it a try, and jump to year 2025 of the @gricultural revolution.

The @gricultural Revolution

We increasingly hear about innovation taking place in Africa and other countries in the South.

ICTs appears to be in the driving seat. Do these testimonies reflect localised initiatives or are there any significant trends at national and continental level? Are we at the edge of a second agricultural revolution?

Let's see what the numbers are telling us ....