Research Groups and Community Empowerment: Federal University of Ceará as Mediatorin Xavier Community, Brazil

Autor(es): Davoli, Juliana

Orientador: Schreurs, Miranda

Título: Research Groups and Community Empowerment: Federal University of Ceará as Mediatorin Xavier Community, Brazil

Resumo: Brazil’s recent wind power expansion has affected the country both in a positive and negative manner. Especially in the Northeast region, wind parks are often improperly implemented, resulting in socio-environmental conflicts with the local population. This is frequently the case with Brazilian traditional communities that normally lack land tenure security. This thesis analyzes the role of empowerment within the conflict mediation process between the Xavier Community and Praia Formosa Wind Farm in Ceará, Brazil. Applying participatory action research (PAR), a group of academics from the Federal University of Ceará acted as a facilitator and empowerment agent within the community. The research for this thesis comprised of data collection and analysis of nine semi-structure interviews with the academics from this group, who had already worked with Xavier community. The results confirm that empowerment is a key aspect in the conflict mediation process. Factors such as emancipation through learning, key partnerships and sense of community have a positive impact on community empowerment. On the other hand, internal conflicts between the community members and misuse of power are the main inhibiting factors. Furthermore, the results showed that the application of PAR is crucial for the mediation process. Finally, suggestions for further research on how to scale up the application of PAR within vulnerable communities in Brazil are presented.


Palavras-chave: wind power, conflict, traditional community, empowerment, participatory action research, mediation

Idioma: Inglês

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