Wednesday, 30 January 2008
Saturday, 26 January 2008
Any organisation or member of the public wishing to make a submission can contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website of the National Parks and Wildlife Service for more details.
To view the current National Biodiversity Plan 2002-2006 click here.
To view an interim review of the implementation of the National Biodiversity Plan 2002-2006 click here.
Thursday, 24 January 2008
All five ODI messages can be found here.
Wednesday, 23 January 2008
Monday, 21 January 2008
Saturday, 19 January 2008
Wednesday, 16 January 2008
Congratulating the winner, the Minister of State for Irish Aid, Michael Kitt TD, said:
“I am delighted that this excellent project which highlights the link between environment issues, in particular energy efficiency, and development was successful in the Irish Aid Science for Development’ award”.
Minister Kitt also added that by:
“By sponsoring this award, Irish Aid hopes to encourage Young Scientists to examine the issues and challenges facing communities in the developing world. All branches of the sciences can play a vital role in creating innovative science and technology that can be used to improve the lives of people in the poorest countries in the world. We need to harness this innovation and combine it with a growing interest among young Irish people in development issues to deliver real change in our partner countries”.
To learn more about how climate change is threatening food crops across the world and how scientists are re-focusing their efforts on crop resilience, rather than yields read this concise article from SciDevNet.
You can download a copy of the workshop report here.
Monday, 14 January 2008
'Europe's environment chief has admitted that the EU did not foresee the
problems raised by its policy to get 10% of Europe's road fuels from plants.
Recent reports have warned of rising food prices and rainforest destruction
from increased biofuel production.'
Read more here and here.
Why this might be good news for countries in the global south.
Thursday, 10 January 2008
Communities of Practice: The Organisational Frontier by Etienne Wenger is a good introduction
This blog posting also highlights some important aspects of communities of practice.
For other interesting views about communities of practice, click here.
1. Neutral Ground: In conurbations, there is a critical mass of humanity who share interests and therefore who can choose to meet up. If rural areas are to benefit from the rich and varied association of inventive and entrepreneurial people, there needs to be neutral ground where they can meet up: somewhere where individuals can come and meet up with like minded participants.
2. Leveller: Acceptance and participation is not dependant on an individual’s status at work (such as professional community development worker) or in society (parish or community council chair or landowner). There are no formal criteria for membership.
3. Conversation is the Main Activity: and humour is valued. Where the past experience of many participants will be of lectures or seminars where they are talked at, in third spaces conversation is spirited, engrossing and there is a sense of genuine inquiry.
4. Accessibility & Accommodation: Third places are easy to access and are accommodating to those who come along. They keep long hours and conversation may continue into the early hours. Activity is not rigidly structured.
5. The Regulars: A cadre of regulars who attract newcomers and who give the space ‘mood’ and set the tone of conviviality. Eden Foundation is particularly good at this – mixing and matching individuals who they imagine will get on and have interests in common.
6. A Low Profile: Third places are without pretence and are comfortable and homely. Much conversation happens around a large table, accompanied by good food.
7. The Mood is Playful: Word-play, wit, frivolity are normally present. Food and music seem to be an important ingredient as is a sense of place.
8. A Home Away from Home: Home like, easy, warm, a feeling of ‘rootedness’
Travellers Remembered is is a collection of 25 beautiful digital stories which record the personal memories of Traveller families in the West Midlands. Media workers helped children and young people to record their parents and grandparents, adding family photographs to bring the memories to life.
A similar project entitled Fieldwork - the Bygone Days of Farming is underway.
Certainly an interesting and useful approach for community involvement in documenting social history. Check out the other projects and activities on the site.
'You go some way towards debunking the fallacious reasoning used to justify
biofuels as a way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions (15 December 2007, p 6 and p 3) - but there is more. The net greenhouse gas saving for current biofuel
crops in temperate regions is not more than a tonne of carbon per hectare per
year - and is sometimes negative. But we need to take account of the opportunity
cost of the land on which biofuel crops are grown. Reforestation, for example,
could remove at least tens of tonnes of carbon per hectare from the atmosphere:
so the payback period is decades at best. Even in the tropics, annual greenhouse
gas savings are a few tonnes per hectare, at most. Growing biofuels may
require land to be cleared, perhaps indirectly: for example, because food
production has been displaced by the biofuel crop. Land clearance results in
immediate greenhouse gas emissions, whereas the biofuel savings occur over
time. Then there are the issues of displacement pointed out in the letter
from Elliott Spiker (15 December 2007, p 18). Using biofuels may merely free up fossil fuels for someone else to use, perhaps in another country. National governments and the European Union should abandon all subsidies and quotas for biofuels forthwith.'
Friday, 4 January 2008
Download handbook here.