Working with local partners, CTA promoted a powerful, pioneering practice known as Participatory 3D Modelling (P3DM) to ACP regions, which has led to better natural resource management, helped local communities become more resilient to climate change and brought about significant changes in the relationship between governments and local communities.
P3DM empowers communities to produce a 3D map of areas where they live as means of recording spatial knowledge. This innovative approach enables language, education and cultural barriers to be bridged in order to influence and control decisions on resource-use. Through CTA-supported capacity building within national and regional organisations, P3DM-supported exercises spread across ACP regions during 2005 to 2016. In Africa, for example, a P3DM exercise in Kenya in 2006 involving 120 men and women from 21 Ogiek clans resulted in a 3D map of the Eastern Mau Forest Complex, which was persuasive enough to convince the Kenyan Government of the Ogiek’s right to the land, and the need to protect the area from land grabbing and resource exploitation.
Replicating Fiji’s success
“Our work together with CTA touched the lives of people in more than a dozen countries and created advocacy opportunities for indigenous leaders to contribute their knowledge to national climate change debates.” Nigel Crawhall, Director, Indigenous Peoples of Africa Coordinating Committee
In Fiji, the first CTA-supported P3DM, held in Ovalau Island in 2005, proved to be a powerful catalyst in developing more sustainable fisheries practices due to increased awareness of the island’s natural resources, their spatial distribution and rights of access. The 3D representation of the island and surrounding waters facilitated collaborative planning, collegial decision-making and more effective resource management. In 2007, the work in Fiji was recognised through the prestigious World Summit Information Society Award in the e-culture category. Replicated in several small island developing states in the Pacific, a centre of excellence in P3DM practice emerged in Papua New Guinea. In the Caribbean, P3DM spread throughout the region after it was first introduced in 2015 to map the island of Tobago for guiding community-driven disaster risk reduction strategies. In Africa, P3DM initiatives were supported by CTA in Chad, Ethiopia, Gabon, Kenya, Madagascar, Seychelles and Uganda.
A rich P3DM portfolio of outputs, including reports, papers and maps, have been used at international forums to document the value of local/indigenous knowledge in sustainable natural resource management, conflict management and climate change adaptation, and in bridging the gap between scientific and traditional knowledge systems. Supported by a handbook published in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Amharic, and a collection of case studies published in 12 languages – translated by a vibrant online community – modelling exercises have since been taken up by a range of other organisations such as the GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). With support from GEF-SGP, a P3DM training kit was also distributed to UNDP offices worldwide. The dynamic global distribution of P3DM can be viewed on www.p3dm.org.
For more impact stories see: The Power of Maps: Bringing the Third Dimension to the Negotiation Table