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Harnessing Afro-Ecuadorian Women’s Heritage to Promote Peaceful and Equitable Development in Esmeraldas, Ecuador

How can heritage be harnessed for equitable development?

Afro-Ecuadorian women in Esmeraldas, Ecuador, are amongst the most marginalised groups in the country. Living in a region severely affected by large-scale extractivism and associated socio-environmental conflicts, they also face the impacts of drug trafficking and climate change-induced environmental degradation. The conditions under which these women live are rooted in a longer history of colonialism, with its own local discriminatory practices. This project aims to create spaces for collective reflection on Afro-Ecuadorian women's identity, as a means of valuing culturally specific narratives, practices, memories and heritage, while harnessing these for equitable development. Working with Mujeres de Asfalto, a community arts organisation, this project seeks to train young Afro-Ecuadorian women as peer researchers, enabling them to collect oral histories from older women, promoting inter-generational dialogue and peaceful development alternatives. 

Research TeamDr Katy Jenkins, Northumbria University; Dr Sofia Zaragocin, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador; Dr Hilary Francis, Northumbria University; Dr Antonia Carcelen, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador 

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International

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