Project Cobra - Creative Commons
Project Cobra - Creative Commons

Project Structure

284 PT

The COBRA project is made up of a collection of highly specialised research, communications and management tasks. In order to create a structure through which these tasks can best be accomplished they have been divided into a number of workpackages (WP). Workpackages 2-5 are the main research elements of the project while WP1 covers project management and WP6 covers project communications.

WP1: Management, coordination, monitoring and evaluation

The COBRA project is a project delivered by equal partners. However, in order to ensure the smooth coordination of its goals and responsibilities, the management of the project, delivered through this WP, has been delegated to Royal Holloway University of London. These duties include the creation of a management structure to implement the project’s monitoring and evaluation strategy, maintaining the online project management tools, liaising with the European Union, providing training for staff and budget management. All project partners have responsibilities to provide regular progress reports and attend project meetings.

WP2: Developing a shared cross- scalar and interdisciplinary understanding of the current situation

The COBRA project is an investigation of the impacts of global policies at the local community level. There are a number of levels or ‘scales’ that have been identified in order to assist with the evaluation of these policies and these have been identified as: local, national and international. In order to understand the current state of affairs, the partners will complete a comprehensive review of policies at the various scales including the international scale and national scales in Brazil and Guyana. This will form the background of how far such policies recognise the realities and concerns of communities at the local scale. This will be accomplished through the application of a systems viability assessment of policies at all scales to determine how effective the approach is in evaluating the impact of different international and national policies and funding on local communities. Within the local communities this review will be undertaken using techniques such as participatory video and photostories which enable communities to represent their perspective in an easily accessible way.

WP3: Exploring Future scenarios affecting social-ecological resilience across local, national and international scales

Once the impact of policies have been analysed and the application of a systems viability approach has been assessed, the project will move to a discussion about the best way to support local communities, given various challenges at the various scales. This can involve a number

of variables, so a number of different future ‘scenarios’ will be identified at all three scales (international, national and local) to assess the impact on communities and ecosystem services. The scenarios will be analysed for various possible outcomes to identify where potential successes and vulnerabilities lie. Participatory video and photostories will be a central component to the information exchange strategy.

WP4: Engage CSOs to identify practices for operationalising ideal cross-scalar models for social-ecological resilience

Once the various scenarios have been identified and strengths and vulnerabilities assessed, COBRA will further deepen its engagement with local community organisations. The visual media resources produced through participatory video and photostory techniques will be used to share this knowledge and together work out what the best response could be to global challenges. In particular it will assess how compatible the interactions among policies at the various scales are to the goals of sustainable development and successful ecosystem service management. Identification of weaknesses in current local community ecosystem service management will also occur. It will then identify what CSOs can do to enhance their resilience in ‘best practice’ models and consult with them on ways to support and develop such practices. Finally, these consultations will be documented and compiled using a range of visual techniques to provide a comprehensive set of case-studies of local communities engaging in ‘best practice’ management of ecosystem services.

WP5: Building wider capacity and applying best practice in other communities and CSOs

Once best practices have been identified, implemented and documented with CSOs that are affiliated with our Brazilian and Guyanese partners, the COBRA project will have developed a valuable resource for the numerous other communities in the Guiana Shield facing similar challenges. Part of the project’s mandate is to ‘spread the word’ and disseminate findings and best practices among communities in the region. In order to do this, the project partners will identify other communities and CSOs in the region facing similar challenges who are seeking collaboration and have the capacity to implement the findings from the COBRA project. Partners will also engage wider communities using the visual multimedia assets through workshops. The ‘best practice’ models will then be integrated within the local contexts, structures and processes, which will vary from community to community. This effort will enable the project to make a further knowledge leap – assessing how transferable best practice models are among various communities and deepen the project’s overall knowledge based on real case-studies.

WP6: Development, dissemination and use of project results

In order to spread awareness of the project, its work and its findings, the COBRA project has created a communications strategy. One of the keys to this strategy is a project website which will be used to communicate with a wide audience including the general public, the scientific community, private enterprise, policy makers and other NGOs. The website has been built to engage our audience through a variety of means including podcasts, video and subscription based newsletters. By providing a mix of specialist and non-specialist content it will enhance public awareness while enabling the exchange of knowledge in the expert scientific, academic and policy communities. The website will also serve as an archiving resource for the findings and data sets from the project in order to ease the process of knowledge transfer when this research is further developed by partners or others in the future. Further dissemination will occur through press releases, conference presentations, academic journal papers, newsletters and films.

QUICK DOWNLOAD: Check out the English version of the COBRA Handbook for Practitioners.