[Reader-list] first posting independent fellow

nilanjanb at 123india.com nilanjanb at 123india.com
Sun Jan 25 21:47:56 IST 2004

Dear Friends,
Here is the first posting about my project:
Community Ecological Mappaing

The eastward expansion of  the city is causing the fast
transformation of the semi rural and rural landscape
into highly urban settlements in the eastern fringe of 
Calcutta. Kalikapur, a densely populated locality
inhabited mostly by the people from poorer economic
strata, a unique ecosystem with very rich mosaic of
original vegetation, with groves of indigenous trees
and bushes, swamps with reeds, and number of water
bodies, has strangely survived the onslaught and now
remains as a refuge threatened by the fast approaching
urban expansion.  A considerable number of Kalikapur
residents have significant dependence on the local
wilderness for their dietary supplements, fuel and
fodder. They, and particularly their children, are
quite knowledgeable about these available, ‘free’
resources, in the locality and also in adjacent urban
settlements. The proposed research is aimed to study
such unique practice of resource use, sharing, and
indigenous knowledge, in a framework of
urban-semi-urban ecosystem. An outline ecological
mapping along with the ethnographic history of 
Kalikapur region is being planned. The project also
plans to document the process of urban transformation.
A small group comprises of knowledgeable kids from
Kalikapur, and kids from the adjacent urban locality,
who have operational computer knowledge, would be
formed. Kalikapur kids will work as field guides and
the urban ones will take charge of the documentation
(paper, photographs, computer storage) mainly. A
participatory bio-resource documentation, and exchange
of knowledge and skill between these two groups would
be actively initiated. 
The media forms for documentation will be photographs,
GPS data reading, audio recordings, and sketches.

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