Natural Justice’s own Kabir Bavikatte recently authored “Stewarding the Commons: Rethinking Property and the Emergence of Biocultural Rights” for the Common Voices newsletter of the Dakshin Foundation. The article explores the legal implications of the growing body of evidence that the conservation of protected areas is best achieved through communities, rather than through privatisation or exclusive state control. The article begins by examining the dramatic expansion of community rights stemming from the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Nagoya Protocol to the CBD on Access and Benefit Sharing and. The article then locates these new rights within the emerging discourse around biocultural rights and identifies biocultural community protocols (BCPs) as a vital vessel for the realisation of these rights.
The article concludes by looking forward to new uses of BCPs, arguing that ‘the cross-sectoral application of BCPs was bound to happen since the critical issue that underlies all the innovative financing mechanisms for conservation, be it REDD+, ABS or other kinds of payments for ecosystem services, is one of recognising and incentivising stewardship of ecosystems through safeguarding the biocultural rights of communities.’
Read the article here, find the full seventh issue of the Common Voices newsletter here, and look through previous issues of Common Voices here.