Pastoralism & the Commons at IASC 2011

On January 11 at the IASC 2011 Conference, Kabir Bavikatte (Natural Justice) spoke on the Policy Forum on Pastoralism and Commons: Beyond Sedentarisation and Sustainability. The Policy Forum had six speakers from different parts of the world, including India, Mongolia, and Japan, presenting a variety of perspectives on the current challenges confronting pastoralists. Kabir presented on the trialectic of new social movements such as the movement for the rights of livestock keepers, whose activism focuses simultaneously on the local, national, and international levels and had successfully generated a global political identity of livestock keepers. He also highlighted the importance of alliances being formed between Indigenous peoples’ groups and pastoralist groups, as well as their ability to strategically use supra-national fora to lobby for rights that are then used domestically to force policy change. He concluded by emphasizing the importance of developing an ethnography of activism for livestock keepers’ rights – in other words, to begin to trace and understand the interplay between local, domestic, and international struggles of pastoralists and its implications for the future of pastoralism.

12 January 2011

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