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Economics of Poverty, Environment and Natural Resource Use

Wageningen, The Netherlands, 17-20 May 2006


Motivation and background

Abolishment of poverty is a tremendous challenge for the global community. Although everyone agrees on the goal of poverty reduction, policies often remain controversial or ineffective. Given that livelihoods of millions are at stake, there is an urgent need to reconsider the causes and remedies of poverty. Poverty and its reduction are often linked to the natural resources base. Local commons, like communal lands, are difficult to manage and may be overused. The use of marine resources in international waters will not be properly controlled in the absence of binding international agreements. The state of the environment affects living conditions of the poor and poverty affects environmental quality. For instance, if firewood needs in poor rural areas contribute to deforestation. Properly managed resources and carefully designed institutions are of utmost importance. The conference contributes to the economic analysis of the relation between environmental and natural resource management and poverty alleviation.

Scope and objectives

The scope of the conference stretches from theoretical to empirical and policy studies, including cooperation for natural resource management, economics of property rights and institutions, bio-economic modelling, economics of agro-biodiversity and studies linking international trade, poverty and the environment. The objectives of the conference are threefold. First, the conference provides a forum for studies on the links between poverty and the environment. Micro level analysis will contribute to a better understanding of barriers to escape from poverty and resource depletion. Studies on the macro level will enhance our understanding of the relations between sustainability, growth, and poverty. Secondly, the conference facilitates discussions on North-South relations in international trade and environmental agreements. Insights from theoretical models and empirical studies will directly help to shape local and international policies to combat poverty and to improve natural resource management. The role of environmental policies for location choice of economic activities, for leakage of pollution from the industrialised countries to the developing countries and for trade in waste will be discussed. Thirdly, poverty raises concerns about local and international justice and good governance. The conference offers opportunities for formulating policy responses and strategies for direct action and implementation.

Call for papers

The programme committee invites contributed papers. You are kindly asked to submit your paper electronically as a pdf file attachment before 31 January 2006 and addressed to [email protected]. Papers from the NWO programme ‘Environment & Economics’ are especially invited. The following information should be included in the paper:
• The title of the paper;
• Name(s) of author(s), with the surname of the paper presenter in capital letters;
• Institutional affiliation of all authors;
• Complete postal and e-mail address of the paper presenter.
Notification of acceptance for oral or poster presentation will be given before 1 March 2006. The deadline for submission of final papers to be included in a CD-rom is 1 April 2006.


Suggested topics include:

Driving forces
• Economic analysis of poverty traps and remedies to escape them
• Analysis of impacts of demographic pressure on the resource base
• Resource use, economic growth and the environmental Kuznets curve
• Options to foster pro-poor growth from sustainable use of natural resources.

Institutional and policy aspects
• Economics of Good Governance - fair access to the natural resource base as a means for production
• Options to support environmental governance in countries in crises
• Resource conflicts involving and affecting indigenous people
• Payments for environmental services to reduce poverty and to protect biodiversity
• Impacts of environmental regulation and its enforcement on poverty
• Environmental policies and food security.

International issues and the role of technology transfer
• North-South technology transfers and, more specifically, the role of GM crops for food security and biodiversity
• Greening foreign direct investments
• Transition management and industrial transformation
• Eco-efficient innovations
• Trade, environment and poverty: relocation of polluting industries
• Impacts of international agreements: trade bans, technology transfers, international fisheries conventions, WTO regulations (e.g. textile trade regulations)
• Sharing rules for environmental costs and benefits for policy design.

New developments in modelling
• Resource modelling and bio-economic modelling
• Game theoretical modelling of resource conflicts
• Modelling the impact of environmental policies.


Erasmus University Rotterdam, International Institute on Social Studies

ISS is an international graduate school of policy-oriented critical social science. It brings together students and teachers from the Global South and the North in a European environment. Established in 1952 as the International Institute of Social Studies by Dutch universities and the...

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