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Research article2021Peer reviewedOpen access

Making place-based sustainability initiatives visible in the Brazilian Amazon

Brondizio, Eduardo S.; Andersson, Krister; de Castro, Fabio; Futemma, Célia; Salk, Carl; Tengö, Maria; Londres, Marina; Tourne, Daiana C. M.; Gonzalez, Taís S.; Molina-Garzón, Adriana; Lopes, Gabriela Russo; Siani, Sacha M. O.


From state-based developmentalism to community-based initiatives to market-based conservation, the Brazilian Amazon has been a laboratory of development interventions for over 50 years. The region is now confronting a devastating COVID-19 pandemic amid renewed environmental pressures and increasing social inequities. While these forces are shaping the present and future of the region, the Amazon has also become an incubator of local innovations and efforts confronting these pressures. Often overlooked, place-based initiatives involving individual and collective-action have growing roles in promoting regional sustainability. We review the history of development interventions influencing the emergence of place-based initiatives and their potential to promoting changes in productive systems, value-aggregation and market-access, and governance arrangements improving living-standards and environmental sustainability. We provide examples of initiatives documented by the AGENTS project, contextualizing them within the literature. We reflect on challenges and opportunities affecting their trajectories at this critical juncture for the future of the region.

Published in

Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability
2021, Volume: 49, pages: 66-78
Publisher: Elsevier {BV}

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG15 Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

    Publication identifier


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