Frequently Asked Questions

General FAQs

The LUCID (Understanding Land Use Change Impacts and Drivers) project is a 5-year research and training project that builds on a long history of collaboration between the partnering institutions from the North and South. With the support of l’Académie de recherche et d’enseignement supérieur (ARES) of the Belgian government, the LUCID project was formulated to investigate the socio-economic dynamics and social justice implications of corn cultivation in the Philippines.

The project seeks to understand the dynamics of farmer-level decision making in the context of local opportunities and threats in corn cultivation. It also seeks to look at the issues under the lens of social justice and philosophy and how the unequal distribution of wealth and opportunities are perpetuated by a small group of rich people who take advantage of supplier perks and discounts while imposing high interest rates on farmers.

The Conference will take place in Mindanao, Philippines from 22 to 24 November 2021 at 3:00 pm daily PHTIt will run for about 2 to 2.5 hours each day, consisting of presentations and subsequent structured discussions. 

Find your time zone here.

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, an online conference using the Zoom platform is set up with breakout rooms for thematic discussions and virtual exhibits.

The Conference is open to all who share a common interest in: natural resource management, sustainability, social justice, and human development. And to all who want to contribute to the broader goals on finding sustainable pathways for the future for food, forests, and farmers.

To register, please proceed here. 

The Concept of Sustainable Development

In response to the global crises on hunger and the unsustainable use of natural resources, the LUCID project is implemented to present grounded scientific assessments on the socio-economic dynamics and social justice implications of land use change, particularly relating to corn cultivation in the Philippine uplands. Specifically, it seeks to contribute to the global Sustainable Development Goals:

  • “SDG#15- Life on land: “Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification , and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss”

  • SDG#13- Climate action: “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts: Climate change is increasing the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events”

  • SDG#8- Decent work and economic growth: “Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”

  • SDG#10- Reduced inequalities: “Reducing inequality within and among countries”

  • SDG#2- Zero hunger: “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture”

  • SDG#1- No poverty: “To end poverty in all its forms, everywhere”

The rise in yellow corn demand from a growing livestock sector has significantly transformed the landscape and resulted in profound impacts on the socio-economic dynamics of upland communities, not to mention the upland areas where these crops are grown. Low maintenance, high yielding variety (HYV) corn has attracted smallholder upland farmers due to the promise of high returns, despite many risks such as climate, pests, other environmental factors, and highly volatile market prices resulting in crop failures and eventually, an endless cycle of debt. 

This context moved the LUCID partner institutions to investigate how decisions to change land use are made within households and how these decisions adversely affect human development. This is carried out through: 

  • Conducting a comprehensive analysis of the economic, social, and cultural dynamics associated with land use change;
  • Building research capacities of faculty members in partner academic institutions through scholarship grants; and
  • Raising awareness and disseminating results among upland farming households, governments, civil society, and the private sector.

You can read more here on the  2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The Food Systems Summit held on 23 September 2021 was an event hosted by the United Nations as part of the Decade of Action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. The Summit launched new actions to deliver progress on all 17 SDGs, each of which relies to some degree on healthier, more sustainable, and equitable food systems. The term “food systems” is defined by the United Nations as the constellation of activities involved in producing, processing, transporting, and consuming food. Food systems touch every aspect of human existence, and when food systems fail, the resulting disorder threatens our education, health and economy, as well as human rights, peace and security. And in many cases, those who are already poor or marginalized are the most vulnerable. You can read more on the summit here:  UN Food Systems Summit 2021.

This conference supports the UN goal to transform food systems and to make progress towards achieving all 17 Sustainable Development Goals; and contributes to the rebuilding “build back better” initiative of the UN food systems  i.e. ensures fair, competitive, distributed, and resilient food systems; promotes a just fair trade among farmers/workers/traders/buyers; and advances climate resilience and mitigation. It also seeks to generate significant action and measurable indicators through informed discussions and comprehensive analyses of the economic, social, and cultural dynamics associated with land use change in the upland communities of the Philippines.

The COP26 is the UN Climate Change Conference that was held in Glasglow, UK from 31 October to 12 November 2021. Leaders from around the world reported back on progress to fight climate change since the 2015 Paris Agreement. Although new decisions on how to cut carbon emissions were made, the general sentiment is that these still fall short in meeting the targets originally set in Paris. More details on COP 26 here. 

Parallel to the UN COP26 conference, Ecojesuit (Ecology and Jesuits in Communication), a global online newsletter managed by the Environmental Science for Social Change in the Philippines, created an online platform to encourage learning, and develop meaningful and collaborative engagement towards COP26. Part of the initiative, is a five-part workshop series that aims to promote the urgency of understanding and participating in the COP26 process as well as forge collaborative actions. This is to ensure that COP26 is a forum for making decisions. You can read more on the ongoing workshops on COP26@Ecojesuit and beyond: stepping forward for the global common good.

Through this network, this conference aims to share grounded experiences on local adaptations and best practices related to agriculture and food security, land use management, and climate change. 

Agroecology is a farming system that is grounded on a community’s own knowledge and understanding of their land. It encompasses a whole understanding of how ecological, economic, and social factors interact. It presents an integrated approach that seeks to transform food and agricultural systems. You can read more here on the Elements of Agroecology. 

In understanding the socio-economic dynamics and social justice implications of land use change in the Philippine uplands, the LUCID project adopts agroecology concepts. The project combines science with traditional, practical, and local knowledge of upland farmers in understanding the root causes of unequal distribution of wealth and opportunities between farmers and a small group of economically privileged people, suppliers, and traders.