Why killing reindeer is poor science

The Norwegian state has ordered Sami reindeer owners to reduce the size of their herds to the ‘carrying capacity’ deemed acceptable by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, arguing that high stocking rates detrimentally affect the fragile tundra ecosystem. Herder Jovvset Ánte Sara has been battling the state in the courts, resisting the requirement to reduce his…

The many futures of pastoralism in the Horn of Africa

A 2016 article by Andy Catley, Jeremy Lind and Ian Scoones – The futures of pastoralism in the Horn of Africa: pathways of growth and change – outlines the different pathways of change emerging in the Horn of Africa. It is published in the Revue scientifique et technique (International Office of Epizootics) and is part of a special issue edited by…

Pastoralism is changing in the Horn of Africa

A few weeks back, Ian Scoones, representing the PASTRES project, joined Andy Catley and Peter Little in a webinar organised by the Feinstein International Center at Tufts University, and chaired by Greg Gottlieb, the Center’s director. The one-hour webinar, aimed at policymakers, donors and field practitioners, can be listened to again here. It gets going about 6 minutes…

Herder with a flock of sheep in a dryland landscape, with sun setting behind mountains in the background

Pastoralism, uncertainty, resilience: introducing the PASTRES project

by Ian Scoones and Michele Nori, PASTRES project This month we are launching a new European Research Council funded project, Pastoralism, Uncertainty and Resilience: Global Lessons from the Margins (PASTRES) led by Ian Scoones (director of the STEPS Centre) and Michele Nori at EUI, Florence. We are asking: What lessons can we learn for global…

A Kharai camel stands with factory chimney stacks behind it on the horizon.

Livelihoods on the edge: contested mangroves in Kachchh

There is a real buzz about Mundra village on the Gulf of Kachchh coast, one of the fastest growing industrial hubs in India. A sprawling port, two of India’s biggest thermal power plants, and a special economic zone with growing export industries jostle for space in what once used to be western India’s biggest stretch…

Dryland landscape with trees, people and animals

Why we should stop talking about ‘desertification’

A great new book has just been published called ‘The End of Desertification? Disputing Environmental Change in the Drylands’, available at a shocking price from Springer. It is edited by two people who know a thing or two about these issues – Roy Behnke and Mike Mortimore – and it has 20 top quality chapters…

Cattle market in Kenya

How was a ‘policy space’ created for pastoralism in Kenya?

Pastoralism in Kenya has long been neglected and understood. Pastoralists have been seen by some as vulnerable, a source of conflict and a drain on the country’s resources. But recent developments have begun to change that narrative. A new government Ministry, the Ministry of Development of Northern Kenya and other Arid Lands, was formed in…

“Pastoralism” book launch, 29 November, London

On 29 November, we’re launching the book Pastoralism and Development in Africa with a panel debate and drinks reception in Central London, held in association with the Royal African Society. Book launchPastoralism and Development in Africa: Dynamic Change at the Margins edited by Andy Catley, Jeremy Lind and Ian Scoones 29 November 2012London House Large…

Pastoralism and Development in Africa: Dynamic change at the margins

This book takes a fresh look at the livestock sector in the Horn of Africa. The region is often in the headlines for all the wrong reasons: drought, famine, conflict and suffering. But this is only part of the story. Looking at the regional centres and their hinterlands, where pastoralists operate, reveals a booming livestock…

Herd it on the grapevine: how pastoralists get a raw deal in policy and the media

Mike Shanahan of IIED has written two great blog posts in two weeks on how pastoralism is viewed by politicians and by stories in the media. The first covers how pastoralists have come to be viewed as ‘backward’ by some dominant policy narratives in Kenya, China and India. “The dominant policy narrative casts pastoralism as…