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What IFSD professionals contributing to the global body of knowledge 

Changing forms of community engagement in natural resources management

Key Messages

  • Diverse interests in natural resources delocalize communities beyond “local” level.
  • Locally-framed, rule-focused and place-based communities are less common.
  • Delocalization involves the exchange of and struggle for various capitals.
  • We suggest recognizing such delocalizing communities in resource governance.

Research Impact Pathways for Ecosystem Services and Poverty Reduction

In a key note speech to the UK ESPA led global science conference, Dr Hemant R Ojha delivered a presentation on how research practice can be used to better inform ecosystems services policy development and implementation, as well as to contribute more broadly to poverty reduction in the developing world. 

Deliberation and policy change

Can participatory policy reform displace the conventional authority? How does the authority get reproduced with the change in the forest policy regime?  The above-mentioned article attempts to answer these two important questions, by analyzing the past four decades of forest policy reforms in Nepal which emerged in the changing environmental and political contexts.

Is South Asian Agriculture Adapting to Climate Change? Evidence from the Indo-Gangetic Plains

Drawing on three case studies conducted in the Indo-Gangetic Plains, covering Nepal, Bangladesh, and the Indian state of Punjab, this article analyzes agricultural adaptation practices to climate change. In particular, we examine how farmers and other agricultural actors understand and respond to climate change.


What policy lessons IFSD professionals are generating through research, field experience, and consulting

How are forest policy decisions made in Nepal?

Key Messages

  • The extent of citizen deliberations depend on the processes of social differentiation including colonization and bureaucratization. Hence, questioning the unequal power relations and the social hierarchies is important to reshape the public policy agendas.
  • Enhancing civic participation in forest-policy making is crucial for deepening the deliberative practices.  Meaningful participation in defining agendas and the process of consultation is more important than the passive participation.
  • Informal coalitions among officials, researchers, civil society activists and representatives of peoples improve the quality of deliberation to some extent.
  • Deliberative processes within the civil society itself needs to be strengthened  to shape the public debate  on forest governance. This calls for fostering cooperation among NGOs and civil actors.


What IFSD professionals and partners are writing and thinking about various development challenges 

Why spend 5 additional years for PhD if you have equivalent published works already?

Dr Hemant Ojha
If you have just completed Master’s and want to continue through a PhD, then spending 4-5 years on a new research project is all justifiable before you can be awarded a PhD. But for a large number of active and mid-career professionals who have already spent several years doing research, this conventional route to earning a higher degree could actually be a waste of time.

Bridging Research and Practice for Catalysing Change

By Dr Hemant R Ojha
We need to bring research and practice together, without collapsing their unique values. More intimate dialogues needed among the peoples residing in the two different worlds. And we also need more people of the hybrid breed – those who can do research in and through practice, and those who can practice while doing research.

PhD Education – The need for a radical improvement

PhD education is in crisis, creating distress and misery in the lives of many who embark on this problematic educational offering coming from Universities around the world. It is now time to fundamentally review and reflect on this activity – the PhD Program –  that started 200 years ago.

Why Diaspora for SDGs?

By Dr Hemant R Ojha
The value of remittance from diaspora is already three times higher than international development aid from the developed countries. Yet, diaspora still remains outside the domain of international development cooperation. It is now time to link the two and harness the combined power to remove deprivation and injustices in the developing world.

Improving the theory of change in international development

By Dr Hemant R Ojha
Using an adaptive theory of change approach, project managers can not only formulate clearer idea of how their efforts might lead to change, but they are also better equipped to detect where their assumptions are proving wrong and where and when adaptive actions need to be taken.

Why do some development programs hurt the poor despite good intentions?

By Dr Basundhara Bhattarai
Every year, billions of dollars is spent in poverty reduction globally. Despite such huge investment and efforts, why so many of the poor are still unable to manage a decent living? Thinking before acting, and acting with a clear theory of change, can make a lot of difference in international development.

SDG and Australia

By Dr Hemant R Ojha
It is important to note that DFAT is actively consulting civil society and private sector partners and peak bodies closely in the process of developing Australia’s voluntary SDG Report. How actively the stakeholders contribute to this process and what sort of report will come out eventually is of immense importance on Austrslia’s engagement with SDG.


What IFSD professionals and partners are bringing to the pool of methodology and tool box

How to write a scientific paper?

By Hemant Ojha Doing research is getting easier but producing the scientific paper out of the research to effectively communicate findings still remains a challenging job, even for the experienced researchers. I have collated my years of experience on – and struggles over – writing scientific papers – please have a look a select powerpoint slides from a course I have run a few times.

Climate change and disasters in South Asia

South Asia is the world’s hotspot in terms of disasters. With the Himalayas hosting the planet’s third largest ice mass, the water related disasters are going to be atop all others, under the world’s highest rate of temperature rise among all regions. The region is also the world’s one of the most seismologically sensitive regions, as illustrated by the devastating earthquakes of Nepal and Pakistan in the past 15 years. The attache presentation was primarily targeted at graduate students, yet provides a basic overview of the disaster situation in South Asia.