TCD–Andes is a Research Programme aiming to produce knowledge on the political ecology of social conflicts in the rural area, the factors driving the geography of NGOs and social movements as they relate to these conflicts, the relationships between civil society and political economy under conditions of neoliberalism, the implications for the future of rural environments and societies and the emergence of diverse development alternatives across space.
It is a collaborative enterprise with non-governmental and social organizations from Latin America, Europe and North America, constitutes a space for research networking and looks for contributing to better policy making in the Andean Region.
“Conflicts over the countryside: Civil society and the political ecology of rural development in the Andean Region”
This research draws in part on ongoing and earlier research exploring: the social movements that have emerged in areas affected by mining in Peru and Ecuador; the factors driving the geographies of NGO intervention and their effects on rural livelihoods and economies in Peru and Bolivia; the relationships between European NGOs and selected indigenous organisations in the Amazonian lowlands of Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia.
All this defines a programme of work analyzing the factor driving the geographies of civil society organizations, and the ways in which they affect political economies of development in two types of region: those characterized by palpably stagnant rural economies, and those whose rural economies are being transformed by the practice (or possibility of) external investment in extractive industries.
At the same time the research will link regional analysis with national and international dynamics and actors. In particular, the research will consider how far civil society actors have influenced national debates and policy formation on the roles of extractive industries and the small farm economy in national development strategies in Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia.