Walker DePuy

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Georgia, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9313

Approve Date

May 2, 2016

Project Title

DePuy, Walker H., U. of Georgia, Athens, GA - To aid research on 'Towards a Political Ecology of Social Safeguards: Translating 'Rights' Across an Indonesian REDD+ Project,' supervised by Dr. Julie L. Velasquez Runk

WALKER H. DePUY, then a graduate student at University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, was awarded funding in October 2016 to aid research on “Towards a Political Ecology of Social Safeguards: Translating ‘Rights’ Across an Indonesian REDD+ Project,” supervised by Dr. Julie L. Velasquez Runk. The purpose of this research is to understand how rights-based conservation is pursued in the Berau Forest Carbon Program (BFCP), an Indonesian REDD+ project. Social safeguards are an internationally designed mechanism to protect REDD+ communities’ knowledge and rights. Current safeguard language, however, is broad, raising the question of how different stakeholders, whether conservation practitioners or local communities, interpret safeguard concepts and how different interpretations might create tension between stakeholders and affect project outcomes. Through multi-sited ethnography across national, provincial, district, and village sites, this research offers a valuable case study for understanding how communication and perception vary between REDD+ stakeholder groups and how forest conservation and carbon mitigation activities in Indonesia might be improved. Results indicate differences in knowledge, terminology, and conceptual models used for concepts such as free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC), as well as tenure systems and ontologies recognized by communities and practitioners in REDD+ projects today. Understanding and engaging these differences is critical to promoting more effective, equitable, and sustainable REDD+ conservation efforts.


DePuy, Walker. 2023. Seeing like a smartphone: The co-production of landscape-scale and rights-based conservation. World Development 164:106181.