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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

  • Laura German
  • Laura C Foster
Award Date:07/07/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 25,200
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 25,200
  • FY 2020=$25,200
Start Date:08/01/2020
End Date:07/31/2021
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.075
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Doctoral Dissertation Research: Translating Indigenous Rights: A Multi-Level Study of Prior Consultation Law
Federal Award ID Number:2017666
DUNS ID:004315578
Program:Law & Science
Program Officer:
  • Reggie Sheehan
  • (703) 292-5389

Awardee Location

Street:310 East Campus Rd
Awardee Cong. District:10

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:University of Georgia
Street:310 East Campus Rd
Cong. District:10

Abstract at Time of Award

Prior consultation policies,which mandate that indigenous communities affected by a proposed law or project are consulted before the activity begins, have proliferated in recent years across many sectors and locations but can be traced back to international indigenous rights law. This research examines how international indigenous rights laws get strategically transformed or “translated” from the international legal sphere to differing local political contexts. This approach goes beyond considering policy in terms of legal interpretations, implementation barriers, or compliance failures, to examine the continuous processes of transformation it undergoes as a result of the strategies of particular actors. A deeper understanding of what makes policy effective (and what “effective" means to different groups of people) is prudent in an era when the international legal sphere is frequently looked to for solving intractable problems like climate change, poverty, and biodiversity loss, but which relies on national and sub- national implementation into diverse social and ecological contexts. Building on anthropological and legal studies of indigenous rights, this research applies a “policy translation” framework to indigenous rights law, bringing a new theoretical and methodological approach to examine this body of law. Policy analyses, archival research, and ethnographic methods will be used to trace how Peru’s prior consultation law (and the international law from which it was derived) has been translated in writing and in practice, from the international, to the national, to the subnational levels during one year of fieldwork, split between Lima and four field sites in the Peruvian Andes where prior consultation has been implemented in the mining sector. By conducting interviews with a wide array of actors involved in and impacted by this law, analyzing archival records of media, financial, and legal data to elicit the wider context surrounding the creation and implementation of the law, and conducting mapping exercises to spatialize the outcomes of the law in each of the four sites in the Andes, the researchers will examine the strategies and spaces used by various actors (indigenous groups, businesses, NGOs, and government agencies) to shape policy meaning, practice, and outcomes according to their interests. Ultimately, this research will shed light on the ways that different actors leverage their power over the legal apparatus, an issue that has broad relevance to other legal contexts. The proliferation of prior consultation policies in diverse political and ecological contexts across the world and the growing relevance of international laws makes this research timely and compelling. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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