Beyond Sustainability: Indigenous Peoples’ Culture and Environment at Risk

  • Levita A. Duhaylungsod
Part of the Wissenschaftsethik und Technikfolgenbeurteilung book series (ETHICSSCI, volume 19)


Sustainable development, as the current discursive strategy for the agenda of progress of postcolonial countries, made instant global attraction since its popularisation by the World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) in the late 1980s. It is common knowledge now that the catchy phrase emerged out of two significant concerns: the recognition of the seriously escalating environmental problems and an increased emphasis on community as the context of development. Its populist appeal comes from its rhetoric: an unstable amalgam of populist thinking (participatory and community-based approach), structural and political focus (equitable access to resources and decision-making), the visibility of women and indigenous peoples, and environmentalism that is deeply anchored on ethics and moral principles. What seems remarkable in the current development discourse is its special gaze on indigenous peoples as a reservoir for lessons in sustainability, in particular, their traditional knowledge system and resource management strategies which are rooted in their environmentally harmonious way of life (Escobar 1995). The State (and global) agenda of sustainable development and its precepts of ecological capitalization and community-based resource management strategies found an appealing interpretation in indigenous peoples’ communities and have therefore placed them in such central position in contemporary developmentalism.


Indigenous People Political Ecology Resource Management Strategy Spirit Owner Populist Appeal 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

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  • Levita A. Duhaylungsod

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