A variety of conference resources, including relevant research, plus video, audio, presentations and reports from the event.
The STEPS Centre’s work on resource politics
The STEPS Centre’s ‘pathways approach’ has been developed as a way of understanding contending and conflicting pathways of change, in complex, highly contested settings. Building on earlier work on ‘scarcity’ and the politics of allocation, we have highlighted the multiple framings of, and responses to, climate uncertainty. Similarly, an earlier focus on ‘institutions’ for resource control and access, has been extended to looking at resource access in diverse settings from peri-urban India to rural China. Historical work on the politics of landscapes, including forests or rangeland areas, has been built on to investigate the commodification of carbon in African forests. Work on water resources has linked issues of access to notions of security, highlighting political contestation, for example, dam construction in southeast Asia. And we have highlighted the variegated consequences of land, water and green grabbing in different sites across the world.
Areas at the edge of cities are constantly changing and expanding. No longer solely seen in spatial terms, the peri-urban interface is increasingly recognised in terms of dynamic flows of commodities, capital, natural resources, people and pollution. This STEPS project looked at water conflicts in areas on the edge of Delhi, to explore technological and environmental sustainability challenges in peri-urban areas.
Ecological uncertainty has usually been theorized from ‘above’ by experts. But the theories and models concerning uncertainty from “above” may have little to do with the way how everyday men and women (poor or rich, urban or rural especially in the global South) live with, understand and cope with uncertainty in their daily lives. Our research covers urban Delhi, the Sunderbans and Kutch, India.
The threat of climate change has provoked action on a global scale. New deals and funding mechanisms have been set up, with the aim of reducing emissions. One consequence of this is the growth of a market in carbon. This project examines the power, politics and perceptions of carbon in Africa as new schemes are planned and put into action.
This project looks at how the agenda of the ‘Water-Energy-Foodnexus’ has led to some forms of water storage being favoured over others – in particular, how large dams are chosen over other small and large-scale water storage solutions. This project researches case studies from Nepal-India and Thailand-Laos, countries that each share transboundary rivers (Mekong, Ganga) and that are increasingly tied together by jointly developed water resource development projects and cross-border power trade.