Power, Contextual Intelligence and Leadership: Research Approaches for Understanding Participatory Community Climate Change Adaptation
May, Bradley K
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Analysis of power in natural resources management is important as multiple stakeholders interact within complex, social-ecological systems. As a sub-set of these interactions, community climate change adaptation is increasingly using participatory processes to address issues of local concern. While some attention has been paid to power relations in this respect, e.g. evaluating international climate regimes or assessing vulnerability as part of integrated impact assessments, little attention has been paid to how a structured assessment of power could facilitate real adaptation and increase the potential for successful participatory processes. This paper surveys how the concept of power is currently being applied in natural resources management and links these ideas to agency and leadership for climate change adaptation. By exploring behavioural research on destructive leadership, a model is developed for informing participatory climate change adaptation. The working paper then concludes with a discussion of developing research questions in two specific areas - examining barriers to adaptation and mapping the evolution of specific participatory processes for climate change adaptation.