Report of the World Bank Conference Land and Poverty from 25th to 29th of March 2019

"The World Bank has learned from the criticism and mistakes of the past decades. The kick-off event "Land in the World Bank's new Environmental and Social Framework" at the World Bank Conference Land and Poverty focused several times on the World Bank's purifcation and the reasons for the failure of international development aid by donor countries. Both the lack of participation and the exclusion of isolated groups such as women* and indigenous people were the focus of attention. This paradigm shift is to be implemented in the future by the new Environmental and Social Framework developed by the World Bank, whereby not only previous sources of error were analysed, understood and redesigned within the development of the concept. Consequently, according to World Bank staff, participation must be a central pillar of international cooperation in the future - at least this is the current zeitgeist of the institution.

The extent to which this will actually make projects in countries such as Cambodia more successful or even more sustainable in the future will become apparent.

Alexander Marx from the Free University of Berlin presented for the Heinrich Böll Foundation Cambodia his research work "Rethinking Land Development and Offset- Mechanism in Cambodia" within the panel "Implementing REDD in practice". The results of three months of feld research from February to May 2018 were introduced to the audience. During this research in the village of O'Rona, Mondulkiri Province, the perspective of the indigenous group of the Pnoung was collected by means of participative research methods (cartography and photography). The aim was to examine the previous participation of indigenous women* in projects on land titles and CO2 compensation mechanisms such as REDD+ with regard to their sustainability and the extent to which human rights violations by NGOs, state authorities or irregular loggers occur in Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary. The research results analysed for this purpose will soon be published. The exchange with other scientists* from South America and Africa shows that the project concept of this CO2 compensation mechanism must be fundamentally revised worldwide with regard to REDD+, especially in view of mutual respect, solidarity and tolerance. Thus, the participants of this conference came to the conclusion that genuine participation of previously marginalized groups must be a fundamental pillar for future cooperation!