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Real utopias and dystopias from the Colombian Amazon : collective future scenarios under government & FARC-EP post-agreement period

Villada, Danna LU (2017) In Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science MESM02 20171
LUCSUS (Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies)
Abstract
After more than 50 years of internal armed conflict, the peace agreement between the Colombian Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia- People’s Army (FARC-EP) raises both hope and concern. There are several opportunities for people, derived from wealth and land redistribution. However, the environmental sustainability of the mechanisms to implement the agreements represent the biggest challenges facing the future. Threats to the environment, such as increased deforestation in areas previously isolated during the conflict, can compromise the ecosystem balances humans and non-humans depend on. The Amazon Forest Reserve is among the areas that will likely undergo the biggest pressures during the post-agreement period.... (More)
After more than 50 years of internal armed conflict, the peace agreement between the Colombian Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia- People’s Army (FARC-EP) raises both hope and concern. There are several opportunities for people, derived from wealth and land redistribution. However, the environmental sustainability of the mechanisms to implement the agreements represent the biggest challenges facing the future. Threats to the environment, such as increased deforestation in areas previously isolated during the conflict, can compromise the ecosystem balances humans and non-humans depend on. The Amazon Forest Reserve is among the areas that will likely undergo the biggest pressures during the post-agreement period. Certainly, there are no blueprints to achieve a stable and lasting peace. However, any real peace proposals need to include all concerned parties. Constructing future scenarios with indigenous peoples living in Forest Reserves and external agents working in La Pedrera, Amazonas Department, is a good case example to define what kind of futures they can envision.
For this research project, I designed and served as facilitator during six scenario construction exercises, with 40 Forest Reserve dwellers. Additionally, I conducted six semi-structured formal interviews with relevant actors. The process of synthesising participants’ views, the current state of the territory, and perceived future opportunities and threats, lead me to a baseline and three future scenarios: Utopian, Business as Usual, and Dystopian. Furthermore, I used the capabilities approach, and Political Ecology, to understand the kinds of conflicts present in the area, to explore real possibilities of peace for the territory, and to expand the roles participants described as more conducive to achieve desirable futures.
Through the baseline and the future scenarios, I was able to identify two kinds of conflicts. The first conflict, in the existential territory, is the clash between the Western and the Indigenous world. The second type of conflict, in the physical territory, is how the armed conflict is present in the study area, through the connexion between gold mining and armed groups. Real proposals for the resolution of conflicts in the existential territory would require collective action, from both indigenous and non-indigenous peoples, to construct a common world. Enhancing the role of youth and ecological movements is key to resolving the conflict in the physical territory, to demand accountability from the state and non-official armed actors, to make more desirable futures possible. (Less)
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author
Villada, Danna LU
supervisor
organization
course
MESM02 20171
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
capabilities, indigenous peoples, peace-agreement, sustainability science, political ecology
publication/series
Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science
report number
2017:002
language
English
id
8924567
date added to LUP
2017-09-04 12:24:38
date last changed
2017-09-04 12:24:38
@misc{8924567,
  abstract     = {After more than 50 years of internal armed conflict, the peace agreement between the Colombian Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia- People’s Army (FARC-EP) raises both hope and concern. There are several opportunities for people, derived from wealth and land redistribution. However, the environmental sustainability of the mechanisms to implement the agreements represent the biggest challenges facing the future. Threats to the environment, such as increased deforestation in areas previously isolated during the conflict, can compromise the ecosystem balances humans and non-humans depend on. The Amazon Forest Reserve is among the areas that will likely undergo the biggest pressures during the post-agreement period. Certainly, there are no blueprints to achieve a stable and lasting peace. However, any real peace proposals need to include all concerned parties. Constructing future scenarios with indigenous peoples living in Forest Reserves and external agents working in La Pedrera, Amazonas Department, is a good case example to define what kind of futures they can envision. 
For this research project, I designed and served as facilitator during six scenario construction exercises, with 40 Forest Reserve dwellers. Additionally, I conducted six semi-structured formal interviews with relevant actors. The process of synthesising participants’ views, the current state of the territory, and perceived future opportunities and threats, lead me to a baseline and three future scenarios: Utopian, Business as Usual, and Dystopian. Furthermore, I used the capabilities approach, and Political Ecology, to understand the kinds of conflicts present in the area, to explore real possibilities of peace for the territory, and to expand the roles participants described as more conducive to achieve desirable futures.
Through the baseline and the future scenarios, I was able to identify two kinds of conflicts. The first conflict, in the existential territory, is the clash between the Western and the Indigenous world. The second type of conflict, in the physical territory, is how the armed conflict is present in the study area, through the connexion between gold mining and armed groups. Real proposals for the resolution of conflicts in the existential territory would require collective action, from both indigenous and non-indigenous peoples, to construct a common world. Enhancing the role of youth and ecological movements is key to resolving the conflict in the physical territory, to demand accountability from the state and non-official armed actors, to make more desirable futures possible.},
  author       = {Villada, Danna},
  keyword      = {capabilities,indigenous peoples,peace-agreement,sustainability science,political ecology},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  series       = {Master Thesis Series in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science},
  title        = {Real utopias and dystopias from the Colombian Amazon : collective future scenarios under government & FARC-EP post-agreement period},
  year         = {2017},
}