Conservation Enterprise Development – getting to know your place

Most conservation enterprises start with an  business idea to test, but how do you know that this idea is the best possible strategy? if possible, it's good to step back and choose an idea to develop based on the particular assets and resources of the place and the community dependent upon it. Getting to know…

From Hammer to Toolkit: An Overview of Value Creation for Conserving Tropical Diversity

When it comes to using markets for conservation, organisations become adept at applying a particular approach. However, there’s a danger that you end up with a hammer in search of a nail, rather than choosing the right approach that fits the challenges and opportunities of a particular place, culture or landscape. This article provides a…

Revaluing Tropical Diversity

Why clear vast swathes of rainforest, with up to 75,000 tree species per kilometre, and replace it with a single species of oil palm? Why are custodians of a vast amount of cultural knowledge forced to live in poverty on the sidelines of society? The short answer is because there is a huge difference between…

The Tropics and homosexual liberation

For much of Robert Aldrich’s book Colonialism and Homosexuality, my main reaction was surprise at just how many of the famous people of the era of empire were apparently homosexual. From Rajah Brooke to Kitchener to W. Somerset Maugham, it’s clear that gay people as explorers, businessmen, writers and warriors made Britain’s Tropical empire in…

How visual data and mobile technology can improve Indigenous decision-making and accountability

Following on from my last post, I started to write about how better access to meaningful, accessible information for Aboriginal leaders can improve decision-making, but I realised the issue was bigger than that. This post discusses how graphical data collection and display, app proliferation and mobile technology can improve decision making and accountability, both for…

Rethinking Aboriginal Governance II – the NT’s Regional Councils

This article is the second in a series which discusses how current our current institutional landscape hinders Aboriginal community development. The usual explanation for dysfunctional institutions is that unskilled or unsavoury directors are not carrying out their function properly, yet what if the problem is the current institutional set-up itself? In 2008, the Labor government instituted reform of…