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Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research

Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research

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APN Session at the 6th Asia-Pacific Climate Change Adaptation Forum

17 October 2018, Manila — APN, with the mission of supporting collaborative regional research and capacity building on global change in Asia and the Pacific, participates at the 6th Asia-Pacific Climate Change Adaptation Forum running from 17-19 October and being held at the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Manila, Philippines.

APN organized an interactive session on “The Role of Science Tools and Indigenous Knowledge Practices to Enhance Community Resilience.” The session focused on two sub-themes: (1) Participatory Tools and Resilience Strategies; and (2) Adaptation Planning and Practices at the Community Level.

Introduced by Mr Seiji Tsutsui, APN Secretariat Director and moderated by Dr Puja Sawhney, South Asia expert for SWITCH Asia, four speakers presented their work and experiences related to community resilience and led the discussions revolving on the session sub-themes. They were Dr Lance Heath, APN invited expert, who worked on a resilience toolkit in Uttarakhand, India.  Dr Chris Jacobson, senior research fellow lecturer from the University of Sunshine Coast, who worked on a community resilience project in Cambodia and Viet Nam, Dr Juan Pulhin from the University of the Philippines Los Banos who worked on LCCAP with Local Government Units,  and Dr Ho Ngoc Son from Thai Nguyen University of Agriculture and Forestry who focused on community resilience and integrating Indigenous Knowledge into policy planning processes  in Viet Nam.

Take home messages

After the sessions, the following points are take-home messages.

Session 1

  • Working at a community scale is critical but we need to look at the macro-scale in addition to community scale
  • Climate adaptation and resilience need to be gender sensitive
  • The community is a very important unit of analysis, but the household level is important too especially when it comes to equity
  • Numerous toolkits need to be articulated and explained specifically what these tools are for — for transfer/application
  • The tools, despite challenges in resources, are assisting the community articulate and reflect on their own needs. Community ownership can be enhanced with the use of tools.
  • Integrate climate change and adaptability

Session 2

  • Bottom-up and multi-stakeholder processes are important in assessing community resilience
  • Institutional capacity development should be in line with enhancing and as important as climate resilience
  • Essential to integrate human security concerns in LCCAP development such as sustainable livelihoods, etc.
  • Institutions of a particular system are directly correlated with the effects of a disaster. Disaster is a consequence of institutional failure.
  • Integration of local community knowledge into policy need the support of policymakers
  • Different action, scales and actions are important. Local community needs space for innovation and we have to integrate indigenous knowledge into policy.
  • More engaging tools are needed so we can capture other aspects (e.g. power dynamics)
  • Policymakers understand that there is a need to preserve and document indigenous knowledge.
  • Human security or capacity to have freedom and dignity needs to be considered in vulnerability assessments.

At the closing, Dr Linda Anne Stevenson, Head of APN Communication and Scientific Affairs, talked about APN opportunities on adaptation and resilience in the current calls for proposals, the deadline for which is 7 November 2018.