SDD Wageningen starts ‘vlogs’ to define Sustainable Development Diplomacy by interviewing experts in different fields

The Capita Selecta course, Sustainable Development Diplomacy (SDD), elaborated on the contested and ‘comprehensive’ definition of SDD. In addition to this course SDD students had the opportunity to attend several  masterclasses, and conferences.  During this period it became apparent that the term of SDD is shaped by a mosaic of different interpretations and implementations, which makes it hard to grasp the multi-level field of SDD. Hence, Veerle Boekestijn and Kyra van den Hil established a vlog, in which different experts of different fields within SDD share their experiences and interpretations. The main aim of this vlog is to broaden the discussion around what constitutes Sustainable Development Diplomacy, in a way that reaches beyond our own community. The vlogs are published on our Facebook and Twitter.

Veerle and Kyra have contacted experts on SDD within and outside the academic environment.

The experts were asked to recommend one article or book that underpins their interpretation on SDD and explain why this text holds valuable insights. It turned out that this is a fruitful way for these experts to elaborate on their invaluable personal experiences within SDD, and to share these in an accessible way. Moreover, the vlog, a pallet of different interpretations, explanations and tips, can be of great valua for students to learn more about the multidisciplinary character of Sustainable Development Diplomacy.

If you have an idea of somebody who would be a valuable addition to this project, then please don’t hesitate to contact either Kyra or Veerle to see how we can try to include her/him. We are, just as everybody, restricted by our own social and geographical situatedness, resulting in an overrepresentation of professors of Wageningen University. We are therefore specifically interested in experts outside our academia.

A couple of examples of professors and diplomats that have participated in this project so far:

In this clip Marcel Beukeboom, climate envoy for the Dutch Ministry of infrastructure and the Environment, recommends the following article:

Whitmarsh, Lorraine, and Adam Corner. “Tools for a new climate conversation: A mixed-methods study of language for public engagement across the political spectrum.” Global Environmental Change 42 (2017): 122-135.

Luisa Steur, professor of anthropology at the University of Amsterdam, reasons how anybody interested in defining sustainable development diplomacy should read Tania Li’s critical reflection on the effects of labels on inclusion and exclusion of people in development in a capitalist setting. The article exemplifies this by showing how large institutions, in their use of the term ‘indigeneity’, often take over the same paternalistic role of colonial officials.

The article that Luisa Steur recommends: Li, Tania Murray, et al. “Indigeneity, capitalism, and the management of dispossession.” Current Anthropology 51.3 (2010): 385-414.

Thea Hilhorst, professor of humanitarian aid and reconstruction at ISS Erasmus University Rotterdam, elaborates on the implications for effective diplomacy in situations of crisis, that can be found in the book ‘Famine in Somalia: Competing Imperatives, Collective Failures’ by Maxwell and Majid. Hilhorst offers a reflection on the potential of what she refers to as ‘scenarios’ for finding a middle ground between case-specificness and general recipes for diplomacy in crisis situations.

The book she recommends:
Maxwell, Daniel, and Nisar Majid. “Famine in Somalia: Competing Imperatives, Collective Failures, 2012–2012.” (2016).

In this video we present Prof. Dr. Bas Arts, head of our SDD track and chair of Forest and Nature conservation at Wageningen University. Arts recommends two articles, who together give a good introduction and critical reflection on the value and possible limitations of mutual gains approach for SDD.

First article that Bas Arts recommends:
Moomaw, William R., et al. "Sustainable Development Diplomacy: Diagnostics for the Negotiation and Implementation of Sustainable Development." Global Policy (2016).

Second article that Bas Arts recommends:
Fay, Derick A. "Mutual gains and distributive ideologies in South Africa: theorizing negotiations between communities and protected areas." Human Ecology 35.1 (2007): 81-95.

Brian Lowry, Deputy General Counsel at Monsanto Company, reflects on the value of the UN White Paper for corporations that wish to get involved in SDD.

The paper that Brian Lowry recommends:
UN Global Impact (2006) White Paper. The UN Global Compact Ten Principles and the SDGS: Connecting, Crucially.

The paper that Brian Lowry recommends:
UN Global Impact (2006) White Paper. The UN Global Compact Ten Principles and the SDGS: Connecting, Crucially

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