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New Books

trees-forests-and-land-use-in-drylands

Trees, forests and land use in drylands: The first global assessment

Preliminary findings

FAO, 2016, 40 p.

Drylands cover about 41 percent of the Earth’s land surface and are home to 2 billion people, the majority of whom depend on forests and other wooded lands, grasslands and trees on farms for income and to meet basic needs. Yet surprising little is known about such ecosystems in drylands, despite widespread recognition of the need to restore drylands to cope with the effects of drought, desertification, land degradation and climate change. This document presents preliminary results of the first global assessment of trees, forests and land use in drylands. It reports, among other things, that the global drylands contain 1.11 billion hectares of forest, which is more than one-quarter of the global forest area. There are also about 13.5 billion trees outside forests in drylands. More than 200 experts with knowledge of the land and land uses in specific dryland regions conducted the assessment, using freely available satellite imagery and a newly developed survey methodology. The pioneering study by FAO and many partners will be fully reported later in 2016.

harnessing-the-power-of-collective-learningHarnessing the Power of Collective Learning

Feedback, accountability and constituent voice in rural development

Roy Steiner and Duncan Hanks (Eds.)., 2016, Routledge, 286 p. ISBN-13: 978-1138121119; ISBN-10: 1138121118

Harnessing the Power of Collective Learning considers the challenges and potential of enabling collective learning in rural development initiatives. The book presents 11 case studies of organizations trying to develop and implement collective learning systems as an integral component of sustainable development practice. Through systematic reflection on action and experience, key lessons and themes emerge regarding the nature of voice,  participation, feedback loops, accountability and transparency, that will be useful for many others in the development community.

This book is a useful resource for academics, practitioners and policy makers in the areas of international development, sustainable development, organizational development, philanthropy, learning communities, monitoring and evaluation and rural development.

grassroots-innovation-movementsGrassroots Innovation Movements

Adrian Smith, Mariano Fressoli, Dinesh Abrol, Elisa Arond, Adrian Ely., 2016, Routledge £23.99, ISBN: 978-1-13-890122-3

This book, in the STEPS Centre’s Pathways to Sustainability series, looks at how six grassroots innovation movements around the world have developed and what challenges they face.

Grassroots Innovation Movements examines six diverse grassroots innovation movements in India, South America and Europe, situating them in their particular dynamic historical contexts. Analysis explains why each movement frames innovation and development differently, resulting in a variety of strategies. The book explores the spaces where each of these movements have grown, or attempted to do so. It critically examines the pathways they have developed for grassroots innovation and the challenges and limitations confronting their approaches.

With mounting pressure for social justice in an increasingly unequal world, policy makers are exploring how to foster more inclusive innovation. In this context grassroots experiences take on added significance. This book provides timely and relevant ideas, analysis and recommendations for activists, policy-makers, students and scholars interested in encounters between innovation, development and social movements.