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"Nature knows no boundaries": a critical reading of UNDP environmental peacemaking in Cyprus

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journal contribution
posted on 23.10.2014, 08:49 authored by Emel Akcali, Marco AntonsichMarco Antonsich
In 2005, the UNDP set up in Cyprus a peace building project called Action for Cooperation and Trust (ACT). This project has aimed to create opportunities for bi-communal partnerships on environmental protection as a way to promote inter-communal tolerance. The present article aims to critically discuss the efficacy of this project in order to contribute to the debate on the significance of environmental cooperation in transforming ethno-territorial conflicts. Our empirical basis relies on both survey data and the qualified opinions of Cypriot environmental stakeholders. Our analysis shows that, in the case of Cyprus, successful environmental peacemaking strategies are dependent on widespread environmental awareness, trust in the ‘third party’ (UNDP), and civil society’s empowerment, which, however, should complement and not substitute intervention at a state level. There is also evidence to suggest that the UNDP discourse about ‘nature knows no boundaries’ is most effective when it succeeds to generate solutions which are perceived to be beneficial to all the parties involved, rather than when it uses the environment to discursively construct a common ‘patriotism’ beyond ethnic identities.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Geography and Environment

Published in

Annals of the Association of American Geographers

Volume

99

Issue

5

Pages

940 - 947

Citation

AKCALI, E. and ANTONSICH, M., 2009. "Nature knows no boundaries": a critical reading of UNDP environmental peacemaking in Cyprus. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 99 (5), pp.940-947.

Publisher

Taylor & Francis (© Association of American Geographers)

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2009

Notes

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Annals of the Association of American Geographers on 10/11/2009 available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/00045600903245938

ISSN

0004-5608

eISSN

1467-8306

Language

en

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