Accepted paper:

Social Dynamics and Sustainability: Some Anthropological Insights

Author:

Suzanne Hanchett (Planning Alternatives for Change, LLC)

Paper short abstract:

Anthropology can clarify and expand the concept of "sustainability" by offering insights into social dynamics and other forces. This report will use examples from applied research in Bangladesh relating to introduction of new water and sanitation technologies. Some successes and some failures will be analyzed.

Paper long abstract:

The reasons why development programs do or do not continue and thrive are complex, depending on the inter-play of social, political, cultural, and economic factors. Anthropology can clarify and expand the concept of "sustainability" by offering insights into the dynamics of this inter-play. This report will use examples from applied research projects in Bangladesh relating to introduction of new water and sanitation technologies. Some successes and some failures will be analyzed to demonstrate the relevance of anthropology to the sustainability concept.

panel G16
Towards an anthropology of sustainability?