Imagining alternative futures

Programme Researcher, John Magrath, describes the process of applying ‘participatory scenario development’ to explore how Bangladesh might achieve zero hunger and zero carbon emissions by 2041. It is tempting to assume that the future will follow much the same trajectory as the past. Imagining alternative futures can be dismissed as dreaming, or science fiction. And if we do imagine the …

Land is where it all begins

When land rights are jeopardised, so are the livelihoods of the people who depend on it. As Oxfam launches a new land rights website, Barbara Codispoti highlights some of the key things we have learned. Land is so much more than just a means for production. Securing rights to land allows people greater political power, community representation, and economic security. …

Constant crisis: The new normal for market analysis?

Climate change and ongoing conflicts have made Pre-Crisis Market Analysis (PCMA) an essential feature of Oxfam’s humanitarian work. Corrie Sissons and Daniel Pasquini share how PCMA exercises have helped Oxfam to respond effectively in two very different contexts. One approach Oxfam frequently uses is mapping, analysing and understanding markets in emergencies.  Our experience working in humanitarian relief and development has …

Deconstructing gender identities and power structures

Can working within existing structures lead to breakthroughs in gender equality? Daniel Morchain reflects on the contrast between points of view at the UN Commission on the Status of Women meetings last month. The 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women, organised by UN Women, was just getting underway. ‘Colonisation is a huge problem in Canada and we …

Raising the voices of indigenous youth at the UN

Soledad Carrasco reflects on her experience of attending the UN youth forum as a representative of the indigenous peoples of Peru. Youth are often accused of being indifferent to the political events unfolding in our society. But I saw no evidence of that at the Youth Forum of the United Nations which I attended recently in New York. The forum, organized …

Novel partnerships in an era of global environmental change

The sustainability research community needs to develop new alliances if they want to have real impact argues Georgina Cundill Kemp, Senior Program Officer at the International Development Research Centre in Canada. “He who becomes the slave of habit, who follows the same routes every day, who never changes pace, who does not risk and change the color of his clothes, who does not speak …

A practical tool for listening to the people that matter

Jessica Fullwood-Thomas introduces a new online tool by Oxfam, which can help practitioners to better listen to the viewpoints of the communities we’re working in.  TS Elliot famously said, ‘Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?’ Increasingly we have ever greater quantities and sources of data, but do we …