DevNet2020 named sessions [Open for submission of abstracts]

Submitting an abstract for a named session

Named sessions are open for submission of abstracts for research or practitioner papers. You’re welcome to contact session organisers with questions about session topics. Once you’ve decided on a named session, submit the abstract via the relevant link (practitioner or research paper) on the abstract submission page here: https://devnet.org.nz/abstract-templates-and-submission-links/. You’ll find the templates to complete and submit on the same webpage. Submissions close at 12 noon on 30 August 2020.

Named session titles

https://devnet.org.nz/devnet2020-named-sessions_-descriptions/Click on a session title below to read the description. You can also download the session descriptions here.

Achieving Social Justice and Human Rights through Tourism – Fact, Fluid or Fiction?


Session organiser: Associate Professor Anne Hardy

Contact: Anne.Hardy@utas.edu.au

Studies into international development are often built upon idealised notions of progressive outcomes while maintaining social justice and the protection of human rights (Cole & Eriksson, 2010). However, international development praxis suggests that results are benign at best (Easterly, 2006). Like Amartya Sen’s (2009) theorising of justice, Jamal (2019) has described social justice as a difficult to define, multi-faceted concept, but one which is underpinned by the notion of freedom and equality and the protection of human rights.  Tourism has been lauded as an industry that can play a major role in international development (Cheer & Peel, 2011) and an industry that offers many positive opportunities for the attainment of social justice and respect of human rights (Schelhorn, 2010; Sin, Oakes & Mostafanezhad, 2015; Cole & Morgan, 2010; Higgins-Desbiolles, 2008). As such, tourism receives considerable attention in development planning and is linked to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (Hughes & Scheyvens, 2016). At the same time, tourism has been critiqued for its uneven focus on economic and environmental dimensions, while neglecting the social domain (Vorobjovas-Pinta & Hardy, 2020) and overlooking social justice and human rights (Shelley, Ooi and Denny, 2020). For example, whether tourism can contribute to poverty alleviation or not is contested (Scheyvens, 2012; Rajotte & Crocombe, 1980) and its negative impacts impossible to ignore (Cheer, 2020).

This session will tackle these conflicting issues head-on. Specifically, this session will explore, critique and highlight both the attainment and challenges that pertain to securing social justice and human rights in tourism. 

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Addressing the inequality in the academic knowledge production between the researchers in the Global North and in the South Pacific


Session organiser: Ramona Boodoosingh and Masami Tsujita Levi

Contact: r.boodoosingh@nus.edu.ws;  m.levi@nus.edu.ws

The catchphrase “Development matters” has been no more important than in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. The majority of the independent island states in the Pacific region have succeeded in holding the pandemic at bay through stringent entry requirements. However, many of them have had to rely on New Zealand, Australia or the USA for testing and research on treatment and vaccines due to the lack of capacity in-country. This has also been the case around conducting academic research in the Pacific. The lack of resources constrains the ability of in-country researchers to undertake activities imperative to the production of academic knowledge, which include initiating research projects, participating in international conferences, and publishing articles. Consequently, the knowledge about the Pacific Islands has been produced disproportionally by researchers from resource-rich institutions in the Global North.
However, since COVID-19 precautions have put 90 percent of the world’s academic institutions under lockdown, researchers regardless of their localities have experienced similar constraints on mobility and access to resources. This shared experience has simultaneously created increased opportunities for researchers in developing countries in the Pacific and elsewhere. Increased open access to journal articles and e-books, as well as an option of online participation in seminars and conferences, have reduced the inequality in academic knowledge production and dissemination to some degree. It is uncertain if these changes will remain post COVID-19 or if the challenges faced by the Global South researchers will return.

This session encourages participation from those who wish to discuss the impact of these COVID-19 induced changes and examine whether they have the potential to reduce inequality in the academic knowledge production process between the Global North and the South.

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Beyond business as usual: Recasting ‘development’ for regenerative economies


Session organiser:
Assoc Prof Anna Carr, Assoc Prof Jenny Cave & Prof Dianne Dredge

Contact:
anna.carr@otago.ac.nz  j.b.j.cave@swansea.ac.uk

COVID-19 has exposed vulnerabilities in communities dependent on narrow development models such as over-reliance on tourism. The impacts have fallen unevenly across different groups and subsectors. There is now a need to challenge the ‘norm’ and foster diverse economic practices that would enhance resilient communities, reconsider development models and develop regenerative economic options that address individual and community flourishing, reducing risk, vulnerabilities and recovery. The diverse economies framework envisages the co-existence of capitalist, alternative capitalist and non-capitalist practices and provides a pathway to more resilient and regenerative economic practices.

This session is inviting papers from academics, not for profit organisations and industry professionals that explore positive approaches to reimagining or recreating economic activities. We are particularly interested in marginalised groups in peripheral communities and in regenerative economies in urban/rural regions. This enables the presentation of research, innovative case studies and creative works.

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Climate Mobilities, Mobility Justice and Planned Relocation in the Asia-Pacific


Session organiser:
Andreas Neef

Contact:
a.neef@auckland.ac.nz

Internal and transnational climate migration is expected to rise in the Asia-Pacific region where climatic hazards and sea-level rise are threatening coastal areas and low-lying islands. Large-scale migration in response to sudden-onset climate-related disasters and slow-onset environmental degradation and sea-level rise could place increased pressure on livelihoods, public health systems, infrastructure, and social services. Moving to a new place can also have severe psychosocial and cultural implications for climate migrants, even when it involves processes of voluntary and planned relocation.

The session aims to address the following questions: When, where and under what conditions can migration be attributed to climate change? Which forms of climate-associated mobilities (voluntary vs forced, pre-emptive vs reactive, short- vs long-term, internal vs cross-border, spontaneous vs planned) have been documented for which types of climate-related hazards (slow- versus rapid-onset events)? What are the psychosocial, cultural and economic impacts of climate-associated migration on people on the move, on host communities and societies, and on those left behind? How are evolving planned relocation guidelines in Pacific countries implemented at the local level? Who counts as a ‘climate migrant’ today, domestically and internationally, and what is their legal status? Which groups are able to move and who remains trapped in poverty and immobility? How can the evolving concepts of ‘mobility justice’ and ‘uneven mobilities’ inform current and future policy debates around climate mobilities in the Asia-Pacific?

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Confessions of a Development Practitioner


Session organiser:
Samantha Leonard

Contact:
s.leonard@massey.ac.nz

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

This session is an informal round table discussion, where practitioners can come together and share their stories of success and failure. The aim is to create a safe space, where our challenges of ‘doing development’ in the real world can be openly shared and discussed (and hopefully share a few laughs in the process).

If you would like to participate in this discussion group, please submit your name, the organisation / agency you work with and a 50-word description of your background in development.

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Decoloniality in Development Studies in Aotearoa: engaging race, gender, sexuality, indigeneity


Session organiser:
Yvonne Underhill-Sem

Contact:
y.underhill-sem@auckland.ac.nz 

Recent debates in social sciences globally and in Aotearoa, have heightened the need to directly addressing decoloniality in knowledge-making in development studies. Enduring processes of racism, sexism and other forms of social injustice in Aotearoa are regularly revealed in development studies. The imperative to decolonise knowledge was made palpable in Aotearoa with the publication in 1999 of Linda Tuhiwai Smiths book Decolonising Methodologies. By drawing attention to research as a colonising practice of long standing, it offered robust analytical possibilities for transforming deeply embedded unequal power relations in knowledge making. Two decades later, it is timely to ask to what extent has knowledge-making in development studies in Aotearoa, responded to this imperative. Exactly what kinds of transformations have been made in the decolonisation of knowledge-making in development studies in Aotearoa? This session invites contributions that speak to this problematic, especially those that pivot on concepts of transindigeneity, sex-gender systems, intersectional inequalities and the white gaze.

The session will allow space to explicitly examine the contours of decoloniality in development studies in Aotearoa.

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FinTech’s Development Futures [WITHDRAWN]


Geopolitics and international development cooperation in a time of coronavirus


Session organiser:
Jo Spratt

Contact:
Joanna.spratt@oxfam.org.nz

International development cooperation, whether it be aid, trade or migration, has always been imbued with geopolitical aspirations and battles. The present is no different, but the coronavirus has seen an interesting turn, given China’s use of softer forms of aid through medical assistance and equipment, compared to their usual heavy focus on infrastructure. In the Pacific, the past years have seen a flourishing of renewed attention to the region, ostensibly due to a concern regarding the expansion of China’s influence. Australia had the ‘Pacific Step-up’, Britain the ‘Pacific Uplift’ and New Zealand the ‘Pacific Reset’, while France, Japan and the United States have all renewed their engagement with countries in the region. The implications this has for the quality of international development cooperation efforts, and development achievements, in the region are profound.

This panel will discuss the geopolitics of international development cooperation, with a focus on the Pacific region, and draw-out conclusions for how to account for these in policy-making and programming.

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Health security


Session organiser:
Helen Leslie

Contact:
Helen.Leslie@mfat.govt.nz

Health security has taken central stage in discussions of global development inlight of the impacts of COVID-19. All around the world countries have been confronted with major challenges in terms of protecting their people’s health in the face of the pandemic, and this has notably exposed vast inequalities in health security around the world. The reality is that the poor and marginalized are most vulnerable in the face of such threats to human wellbeing. A challenge for development agencies and governments is to envisage ways of building more resilience into health systems into the future. This is particularly pertinent in the South Pacific region where it is challenging for governments to serve the needs of geographically dispersed populations.

In this session speakers will confront these issues, reflecting on the COVID-19 response in various contexts as well as considering useful development strategies that can be supported by various actors to ensure the health and wellbeing of people in the global south, in particular.

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Interrogating Partnership in the Changing Governance of Development between the Global North and South


Session organisers:
Jesse Hession Grayman & Yuko Nagamine

Contact:
 j.grayman@auckland.ac.nz; ynag050@aucklanduni.ac.nz

The power relationships between the Global South and North have attracted attention in the development sphere for decades. To overcome power imbalances in these relationships, development discourse has encouraged NGOs in the Global North to promote local participation, ownership, and empowerment with the intention to facilitate “change” in the Global South. This is based on the norm that allows the Global North to point out issues of the Global South as faults thereby establishing justifications for intervention. More recently, policymakers and practitioners in INGOs utilize the narrative of “partnership” to resolve persistent power imbalances between the Global South and North. A governmentality framework reveals that discourses of participation, empowerment, and also partnership are grounded in neoliberal logics, thus further entrenching the Global North’s governance over the Global South.

This session will critically engage with the notion of social change in international aid relationships. We encourage speakers whose work interrogates efforts in the Global North to “change” the Global South, including through narratives and practices of partnership. This panel aligns with the overall theme “should we abandon the development project?” by examinating “development” as a governing tool used on populations in the Global South. Instead of discussing development projects per se, this panel invites presenters to critically examine the politics and power dynamics underlying development projects.

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Labour mobility in lockdown


Session organiser:
Jo Spratt

Contact:
Joanna.spratt@oxfam.org.nz

Migration is one of the most powerful means individuals and families have for expanding their basic standards of living and their opportunities in life, and that of their broader communities. The remittances migrant workers send home to family contribute significantly to economic well-being in sending communities. Across Asia and the Pacific, the movement of people for employment and expanded opportunities is significant. The NZ government facilitates this, through its Recognised Seasonal Employer Scheme, but also via various visa lotteries with Pacific Island Countries. The advent of the coronavirus pandemic has seen severe restrictions on peoples’ ability to move, both across geographical borders and within their own communities, which impacts significantly on employment and economic well-being.

This panel will discuss labour mobility as a development pathway, and the challenges the coronavirus pandemic presents to labour mobility across the Pacific region and Asia.

Localisation of development


Session organiser:
Gordon Nanau, Api Movono & Gaia Maridati

Contact:
A.Movono@massey.ac.nz; gordon.nanau@usp.ac.fj

While the discussion has been alive for some time, the closure of borders to stop the coronavirus spreading has raised the concept of ‘localisation’ an even more pressing issue to advance action on. Most recently, ‘localisation’ was made prominent in the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit, but it is a long-term issue for international development cooperation work, closely related to questions of sustainability and ownership. In New Zealand the debate centres predominantly on international NGOs, but the question is not only relevant to these organisational forms. The question of localisation is also relevant for consultants, the private sector, academia, and other development actors. The underpinning principle is to channel aid to ‘local’ actors, organisations and institutions rather than use external, international actors.  But this is a complex practice requiring significant attention to context, especially cultural, political and economic incentives. Localisation has both advantages and disadvantages. What is most important is to select the best approach for the situation at hand and the desired goals. The challenge for international development cooperation actors in New Zealand – donors, INGOs, the private sector, consultants, and others, is just how do to this.

Measuring progress against the SDGs across the Asia-Pacific Region


Session organiser:
Carolyn Savage

Contact:
carolyn.bpw@gmail.com

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, represent a universal commitment to action to protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030. Recognising the pledge to ‘Leave No One Behind’, countries have committed to fast-track progress for those most disadvantaged. That is why the SDGs are designed to bring the world to several life-changing ‘zeros’, including zero poverty, hunger, AIDS and discrimination against women and girls. To achieve these goals will require SDG17 to be fully enacted, that is, partnerships across NGOs, governments, civil societies, academic institutions and community groups. Within the Asia-Pacific region, the 2030 Agenda poses significant challenges and obstacles, compelling collaboration and stronger relationships.

This session welcomes presentations that will help us determine the nature of progress gained within the Asia-Pacific Region. We encourage academics and practitioners alike to share their own experiences, stories or research as we discuss successes gained and challenges faced in the race towards reaching the 2030 targets.

Resource extraction and land grabbing in the Pacific


Session organiser:
Pascale Hatcher

Contact:
pascale.hatcher@canterbury.ac.nz

The pursuit of economic growth and ‘development’ more broadly, has long fed widespread resource and land grabbing activities in the Pacific, a process that has often failed to deliver said ‘development’ outcomes. In fact, such activities have often coincided with the marginalisation of local communities, long-term destruction of the environment, and increased poverty levels. 

This panel seeks to bring together academics, policy makers and practitioners to critically reflect on the state of extractive industries in the Pacific, the impact of such activities on the region’s development, and to explore political, social and environmental alternatives arising from contemporary scholarships and practices.


Our voices matter: Bringing an Indigenous perspective to the Sport-for-Development (SFD) Field


Session organiser: Rochelle Stewart-Withers and Jeremy Hapeta

Contact: r.r.stewart-withers@massey.ac.nz

At the turn of the century, Nelson Mandela proclaimed ‘Sport has the power to change the World” (Mandela, 2000). Across the globe organisations across a variety of fields and especially international development, have since committed to the idea that sport can be used to meet social policy, peace-making and social justice agendas and goals (Rossi & Jeans, 2016: 483). This movement has been labelled Sport-for-Development and Peace, plus-Sport, or simply Sport for Development (SFD). Much is promised (Collison, Darnell, Giulianotti, & Howe, 2018). Yet, while 20 years of dedicated SFD theorising, research and practice have seen significant growth and sophistication, Indigenous voices within SFD theorisation, policy and practice are under-represented; almost absent (Hapeta, Stewart-Withers & Palmer). This is despite Indigenous populations – including those in Aotearoa and the South Pacific – often being targeted by SFD initiatives.

This session recognises that Indigenous scholarship remains politically marginalised in many disciplines, firstly,  due to a lack of acceptance and understanding of other ways of knowing and secondly, knowledge production and sharing. Thus, we concur with Spaaij et. al. (2018) that it is imperative “SFD researchers develop a heightened awareness of what types of knowledge are dominating in SFD and what types of perspectives and understandings are being privileged, as well as better understand their limitation, bias, and partialities” (p. 34). In arguing that Indigenous voices matter, dedicated sessions can create space for the often-silenced Indigenous scholars and participants’ voices to be heard (Spaaij et al., 2018). This proposed session seeks to therefore consider Indigenous concepts and theoretical understandings which are embodied in SFD research and practices. This session is open to examples of positive SFD practice with Indigenous communities, but it also looks to probe, deconstruct and contest current SFD discourse, providing a more nuanced understanding of the SFD space.

Responding to COVID-19 in the Pacific: Challenges and opportunities for doing development differently


Session organiser:
To be advised

Although the Pacific has so far escaped the uncontrolled spread of COVID-19, closed borders and restrictions on travel have caused severe economic disruption through loss of tourism, reduced remittances and trade flows, higher unemployment and increasing hardship and poverty. Development gains made over the last few decades could be lost, with vulnerable and marginalised communities likely most affected. The impacts of COVID-19 represents both challenges and opportunities, and will require us to think differently about how we operate and engage with others, and how best to respond to the needs of the region without overburdening our partners.

In this session, speakers will explore the following types of questions: What will development assistance look like in a post-COVID environment? How much support will there be for sector wide budget support vs community programmes? What does this mean for meeting the SDGs and supporting vulnerable and marginalised communities? What opportunities exist for greater localisation and adaptive practices? How do we measure success and from whose perspective? What changes will and should endure?

SDGs: Just another set of goals?


Session organiser:
Samantha Leonard

Contact:
s.leonard@massey.ac.nz 

Are the SDGs just another set of goals, or does the SDG framework provide inspired, creative and innovative leadership towards a sustainable future for all? In 2015, the United Nations declared the 2015 Sustainable Development Goals as “the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. Considering the myriad of previous UN-led endeavours for global sustainability, how are the SDGs different? Do the SDGs provide an original and innovative framework to lead the world towards future sustainability, or are they more of same-old, same-old in new packaging?

In response, this session invites papers which take an analytical look at the SDGs within the context of:
Justice: Considering the ‘Leave no one behind’ motto of the SDGs, it is imperative that we ask how, and indeed if, the SDGs provide a framework of action towards an inclusive society and global action for development against poverty, inequality and injustice. In addition, considering the current global pandemic, which goals require specific attention and why?
Unity: The success of the SDGs rests largely on the integration of the goals and cooperation between countries and across all sectors. Do the SDGs provide genuine opportunities for inclusive engagementand interaction? What needs to change to foster increased cooperation across society and between countries? Alternatively, what positive examples do we see of specific actors stepping up to the challenge of achieving the SDGs?
Sustainability: How we navigate this next decade is one of the most important discussion points for government, business and communities – from the international stage right down to a grassroots level. Do the SDGs set us up to achieve the aim of a thriving, diverse, low emissions planet for future generations? Transformation: It is critical that our world is transformed towards equality, peace, sustainability and well-being for all. True transformation requires an appreciation of indigenous knowledge, alternative worldviews and embraces a diversification within specific contexts. Can the SDG framework provide the leadership required to lead us towards genuine transformation on all levels?

Talking aid: communicating for a better world


Session organiser:
Jo Spratt

Contact:
Joanna.spratt@oxfam.org.nz

That development does matter is a fact that the international development cooperation community struggles to get across to the broader public. Issues such as global heating, poverty and inequality are collective action problems: until we bring enough people with us to effect structural change, we will always live in a world best with these indignities. To bring people with us, we need to share information and tell stories in ways that engage their hearts and minds, and motivate them to act. This session will bring together campaigning and communications people from government, academia and civil society to present findings from the MFAT-sponsored aid public opinion survey and case studies on attempts to engage and motivate the public.

Paper presenters will raise questions about how to expand our collective capability to bring the public with us on our quest to ending poverty and inequality everywhere.

The heart of Indigenous tourism


Session organisers:
Bronwyn Hutchison & Api Movono

Contact:
A.Movono@massey.ac.nz; bronstrom@gmail.com

Globally, there is increasing recognition of the importance of Indigenous culture, knowledge and values for informing sustainable development pathways. Yet for too long, Indigeneity has taken a back seat to the expectations and wants of the tourism industry and tourists, obscuring societal and cultural elements that influence resilience. In this session, it will take centre stage.

This session takes inspiration from the late Johnny Edmonds (founder of the World Indigenous Tourism Alliance) in order to examine what is at the heart of Indigenous tourism. Contributors will cover issues such as:

  • How do Indigenous worldviews influence Indigenous tourism?
  • What is the relevance of a rights-based approach to Indigenous tourism
  • What have been the immediate impacts of COVID-19 on Indigenous tourism?
  • How can we re-imagine tourism post-COVID-19 so that it benefits both people and planet, drawing inspiration from Indigenous voices and values?

Tourism sector resilience and realities in times of crisis


Session organisers:
Heidi van der Watt

Contact:
H.Vanderwatt@massey.ac.nz

The COVID-19 crisis has had a devastating impact on tourism, exposing inequalities and dependencies.  It has triggered wide-spread debates about the potential for tourism to be rebuilt with a focus on sustainable development, with many destinations and businesses crafting strategies and plans underpinned by hopeful visions for post-COVID tourism.  However, tourism for development is reliant on a private sector that is often an oblivious participant, simply attempting to make a living within the neoliberal economic paradigm. 

In this session, presenters will compare contrasting perspectives of sector responses to previous crises, such as the Global Economic Crisis, SARS outbreak, Cape Town water crisis, etc. Did responses lead to more sustainable tourism practices that contribute to achieving the SDGSs in the long run, or do economic realities constrain the realisation of tourism for development?  The session will also debate measures of success that should be applied to tourism for development in a post-COVID future. We welcome contributors to this session.


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