This research aims to identify the challenges and opportunities that exist within and amongst First Nations communities for creating culturally appropriate and resilient housing models and local economies. It will build understanding around what is required to transform the current housing system from one that uses external labour, resources and businesses to one that promotes local livelihoods, value-added businesses and local resource use within a First Nations culturally focused bioregional economy.
Nova Scotia forests boast the second highest private ownership rate in Canada, with almost 3 of 4.5 million hectares owned by 30,000 woodlot owners and private corporations. Because of this, forest management practices vary widely. Though the Nova Scotian forests traditionally consist of large, mature, unevenly aged trees that support both important biodiversity and a thriving forest sector, mismanagement of these forests for decades has led to a decline of the forests and the rural communities that depend on them.
Vancouver’s inner city is experiencing disproportionate levels of poverty and is under strong development pressure, with concern that few of the associated benefits are being captured by local communities and economies. An appetite exists for innovation in economic development but current community capacity to explore and support these ideas is limited. RADIUS SFU and Ecotrust Canada are developing a social innovation lab methodology and framework that works with community to design, test and launch new approaches to sustainable economic development.
In the past, Canada’s fisheries have been improperly managed, which has led to overfishing and general downturn of fisheries economics. Because of this, the federal government has mandated that all fisheries be monitored to ensure that the proper regulations and quotas are being followed. Recently, the onus for this monitoring has been transferred to the fisheries themselves and they are finding it costly and overwhelming. Ecotrust Canada is designing a new, less expensive and more user-friendly monitoring system and is currently testing it out in Northern BC as well as in Maine.
Social impact bonds (SIB) have the potential to fund proven social innovation projects that governments have to date, for a variety of reasons, been reticent to fund. Through a SIB, private investors fund innovative social intervention work that is carried out by a non-profit. If the non-profit achieves certain social outcomes previously agreed upon by the three parties, a portion of the public savings from early intervention are given to investors as a return on their initial investment.
This research project aims to investigate the potential of a Vancouver Island Model Forest. A model forest is a partnership-based process for working towards sustainable development of a forested landscape. We will arrange a stakeholder meeting to establish a common understanding of the concept and see if there is commitment from stakeholder groups to procees with development. By interviewing key forest stakeholders we will try to identify the common needs and possible areas of collaboration on the Island.
The internship will involve further research, development and the implementation of up to four of the recommendations provided in the previous internship term, as outlined a recently completed report to Ecotrust Canada, titled ‘Draft Summary Report, ‘Forest Stewardship Council Group Certification Program: Next Steps’ (December 2012). The first step will be to work on the development of a proposal of services that Ecotrust Canada could provide to FSC Canada. This will involve identifying what services are needed, and how EC could deliver them while maintaining alignment with their mission.
The research would evaluate the existing financing options for home building in the first nationcommunity. It would also look at the viability of using alternative finanCing vehicle for channelingprivate equity from the various markets. This research hopes to provide the First Nations communities with the necessary financial tools to leverage the existing equity market through both private and public funding.
In response to protests against logging of old growth forests in Clayoquot Sound, Vancouver Island, the government of British Columbia appointed a Scientific Panel to develop guidelines for sustainable forest management and logging. On July 6, 1995 the Government of British Columbia accepted the report of the Clayoquot Sound Scientific Panel (CSSP) and committed to working with companies, workers, and First Nations to ensure that the CSSP's recommendations were implemented in their entirety. The proposed research project is a review of the Panel's recommendations.