Information for 14623IIED
Media perceptions and portrayals of pastoralists in Kenya, India and China
Resilient food systems depend on appropriate policies that enable people to take advantage of their own adaptive capacity. Pastoralists use their mobility to take advantage of resources – pasture and water – that are patchily distributed in space and time. Pastoralism can make major contributions to food security, livelihoods and economic prosperity. However, these benefits often go unacknowledged – by policy makers, donors and the public at large.
This is in part because of development and media narratives that paint pastoralism as something bad that needs to change. This Gatekeeper paper explores how the media portrays pastoralism. To do so, we analysed the content of newspaper articles about pastoralists in Kenya, China and India, and also invited journalists in these countries to complete an online survey and telephone interview. We identified significant gaps – and inter-country differences – in the media’s portrayal of pastoralists.
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From 2012 to 2016, IIED worked with partners to show that, with supportive policies, drylands can be sustainable and highly productive ecosystems where pastoralists manage uncertainty and maximise productivity.
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New perspectives on climate-resilient drylands development