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African Environmental and Human Security in the 21st Century By Helen E. Purkitt ...

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African Environmental and Human Security in the 21st Century


The volume evolved from a set of papers presented at a panel entitled Environmental and Human Security in Africa during the 49th International Studies Association (ISA) Annual Convention in March 2008. The purpose of the panel was to identify more systematic ways to understand, monitor, and remediate specific human and environmental problems in Africa. A common theme among panelists was the importance of understanding fundamental causal mechanisms so that effective policies and actions can prevent human and environmental problems from worsening in the future.

Since all of the panel paper presenters worked for U.S. military educational, research, policy, or operational organizations, there was a shared interest in identifying ways that U.S. organizations, including the recently established AFRICOM, can provide effective, nontraditional security aid. Each paper identified specific measures where remarkably modest amounts of aid or assistance on the part of U.S. or other outside actors might be extremely useful in one or more environmental or human security issue areas. The papers focused on such diverse problems as how to