I recently traveled to Ethiopia to attend “Population, Health, and Environment: Integrated Development for East Africa
,” a conference sponsored by the Population Reference Bureau (PRB
) and LEM Ethiopia
. The conference
was attended by more than 200 development practitioners from around the world, including many from Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, and Ethiopia.
For the meeting, I worked with my colleague Gib Clarke and Shewaye Deribe (pictured above) of the Ethio Wetlands and Natural Resources Association to write and conduct a role-playing simulation designed to bring to life the connections between population growth, natural resource management and environmental health, and development priorities. Participants worked with a scenario involving competing interests and rising tensions among a range of internal and external stakeholders in the fictional nation of Arborlind. Four teams representing government, civil society, a donor, and the private sector negotiated responses to short-term opportunities and long-term risks.
This podcast gives you a taste of the trip–specifically the simulation. We begin and end the audio with the voices of local children welcoming some of us to their school at the Berga Wetland Project, an especially inspiring inauguration to a valuable conference.