On-line guide to improving community participation in environmental planning and management

allenwj at my-deja.com allenwj at my-deja.com
Tue Jun 1 18:42:43 EST 1999

The NRM_changelinks web site  http://nrm.massey.ac.nz/changelinks/
has just been updated and now includes a number of new resource links
related to strenthening the role of community participation in
identifying and adopting more sustainable agricultural and forestry
practices. This site now has a five-star rating from Argus
Clearinghouse in the area of sustainable development.

This site has been developed as an on-line guide for natural resource
managers and others working to help communities identify and adopt more
sustainable natural resource management practices. Links and on-site
material provide approaches, information and theory in related fields
such as sustainable development, adaptive management, collaborative
learning, action research, facilitation, conflict resolution and
information systems design. How these fields interlink in practice is
also illustrated. Although the emphasis of this site is on improving
community participation within natural resource management
(agriculture, forestry, biodiversity enhancement, conservation,
riparian management, etc.) the approaches outlined here are also useful
for those working in a diverse range of development areas such as rural
development, health, housing, etc.

This site aims to support the emerging trend in extension from linear
transfer of technology (TOT) approaches towards more collaborative
learning-based approaches. Traditional extension methodologies are
especially suited to commercial innovations that apply particularly for
productivity or cost-effectiveness reasons. However, in other cases
extension approaches are required more for environmental reasons. Often
too, environmental technologies are more complex, requiring not just a
shift in management behaviour, but - potentially - a new way of
thinking about systems, neighbours and collaborative problem
solving/regional planning.

Other updated sections in this site show how farming, forestry and
other community groups can make the most of the Internet for sharing
information, networking, decision support and learning. A guide is
provided for those who are interested in developing their own web
presence ... particularly aimed at showing how this can be done easily
and at very little cost.

A jobs section provides links to international job opportunities in the
areas of environment, development & natural resource management. This
page also includes links to information on overseas living (country and
regional guides) - as well as moving overseas, and "interviewing for
that international job".

Will Allen

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