Power and Politics: A Dialogue on Human Rights and Biodiversity Conservation in Asia

February 7, 2022 | ONLINE
7:30AM New York | 6:00PM New Delhi | 7:30PM Jakarta

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Read the Executive Summary or full report.

Join RRI for the launch of a new report that brings together data and stories from communities on the ground to re-position global human rights and conservation discourses at the center of Asia’s unique political realities. The event, Power and Politics: A Dialogue on Human Rights and Biodiversity Conservation in Asia, will take place online on February 7, 2022.

This event is co-hosted by Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI); Center for Indigenous Peoples’ Research and Development (CIPRED); Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP); Non-Timber Forest Products – Exchange Programme (NTFP-EP); Rimbawan Muda Indonesia (RMI); Jaringan Kerja Pemetaan Partisipatif (JKPP); Badan Registrasi Wilayah Adat (BRWA); Center for Orang Asli Concerns (COAC); Partners of Community Organizations in Sabah Trust (PACOS).


Globally, Indigenous Peoples and local communities have long been custodians of biodiversity. Their customary territories are estimated to contain 36% of the world’s remaining intact forest landscapes and 80% of remaining biodiversity. Yet, just about 8.7% of territories held by Asia’s Indigenous Peoples and local communities are legally recognized.

The forthcoming report, “Reconciling Conservation and Global Biodiversity Goals with Community Land Rights in Asia” is a product of an extensive collaboration between 20 Indigenous and local community organizations across South and Southeast Asia. It frames conservation beyond being an issue of natural resource management and highlights the question of governance, autonomy, and sovereignty of Indigenous Peoples and local communities to achieve their self-determined development aspirations.

The webinar will include a panel discussion with representatives from governments, NGOs, and Indigenous and local community rightsholder organizations, who will each share their perspectives on how to advance ongoing national movements and reforms to collectively create solutions for achieving a human rights-based conservation model in Asia.

Speakers & Panelists

  • Archana Soreng, Member of UN Secretary-General’s Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change (Moderator)
  • Gam Shimray, Secretary General, Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP), Thailand
  • Dr. Sindhu Prasad Dhungana, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Industry, Tourism, Forests, and Environment, Nepal
  • Sobha Madan, Area Secretary of the Nilgiris Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups Federation, India
  • Rukka Sombolinggi, Secretary General, Indigenous Peoples Alliance of the Archipelago (AMAN), Indonesia
  • Peter Kallang, Chair of the Southeast Asia Regional Council, ICCA Consortium, and member of SAVE Rivers Network, Malaysia

For more information about the event, please contact Laura Valencia.

Simultaneous interpretation will be available in English, Indonesian, Thai, and Nepali.

The Land Writes Blog

Read thoughtful commentary, analyses, and impact stories from Indigenous and local communities in Asia on RRI’s The Land Writes Blog.

Additional Reading

Read RRI’s report on Rights-Based Conservation: The Path to preserving Earth’s biological and cultural diversity?

This report is informed by the imperative to prevent the collapse of biodiversity while respecting the tenure and human rights of Indigenous Peoples, local communities, and Afro-descendant Peoples. It seeks to highlight the risks and opportunities arising out of the proposed expansion of conservation areas in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

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