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Centre for Development and Environment (CDE)


Sustainable development research

On the right path? Land concessions in Laos
Land investment is booming in Laos, driven especially by demand for resources among its rapidly developing neighbours. Still, Laos remains one of the poorest countries in Southeast Asia. The government hopes that projects linked to land investments will improve local productivity, infrastructure, and poverty rates. But there are many risks to local livelihoods and the environment. Ensuring that land investment truly benefits the broader population demands effective regulation and strong political will. The new CDE policy brief provides key insights and recommendations drawn from the national inventory of land concessions and leases, the most comprehensive accounting of such land deals to date for a single country.

Mountain Research and Development, Vol 34, No 4 on Family Farming in Mountains

This MRD Focus Issue on Family Farming in Mountains addresses the question to what extent and how institutions and organizational arrangements of family farmers have been able to cope with current multiple challenges in the context of global change, and whether family farmers in mountains benefit from new opportunities. The geographical range of papers in this issue reaches from Italy to Ukraine, Slovakia, China, Bolivia, and Spain.​

Call for applications: Bernese Award for Environmental Research 2015/16

The Bernese Award for Environmental Research aims to promote disciplinary and interdisciplinary research in environmental sciences and sustainability at the University of Bern. The prize money in 2015/16 totals CHF 15,000. The award, granted every two years, targets researchers whose work makes a relevant contribution to society or lays the foundations for a better understanding of environmental and sustainability problems and their solutions.

Call for Papers: When Does Modernization in Mountains Lead to Sustainable Development?

Post-growth, common-welfare, and transition debates are changing the modernization paradigm that influences development in mountains and elsewhere. How can industrialization and entrepreneurship, social mobility and consumption, urbanization, and governance be made to serve the norms of justice and environmental integrity in mountains? Mountain Research and Development (MRD) is seeking papers that either present well-validated experiences of sustainable modernization processes or analyze the impacts of modernization from a systems science perspective. Notices of intent are due by 16 January 2015, full papers by 18 June 2015.

Three new long-term research projects for CDE

CDE is participating in three new long-term research projects under the Swiss Programme for Research on Global Issues for Development (r4d programme). CDE was named Leading House of two of the projects, Food Sustainability and Telecoupled Landscapes, which it will carry out with various partners in Switzerland and in developing countries. Food Sustainability aims at finding ways of improving the sustainability of food system, while Telecoupled Landscapes examines changes in land use amid the influence of global markets. CDE was designated Junior Partner in the third project, Invasive Species: investigating the spread of invasive plants in East Africa. Each project runs for six years, starting in 2015.
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