10/18/2006 - ALive/LEAD e-conference

ALive/LEAD e-conference on drought management and mobility


Maintaining Mobility and Managing Drought

Policy Options for Pastoral Livelihoods in Sub-Saharan Africa


ALIVE and FAO/LEAD are pleased to invite you to participate in the electronic conference "Maintaining Mobility and Managing Drought – Policy options for Pastoral Livelihoods in sub-Saharan Africa" to be held from 18 October to 13 December 2006. The goal of this e-conference is to discuss and review two policy option papers "Community-Based Drought Management for the Pastoral Livestock Sector in Sub-Saharan Africa" and "Investing in Maintaining Mobility in Pastoral Systems of the Arid and Semi-Arid Regions of Sub-Saharan Africa" that have been written for the ALIVE multi-actor Partnership. These policy option papers are meant to inform African policy-makers and decision makers in international and financial institutions on the latest developments in key areas important for sustainable livestock development, and provide them with a range of policy options to address the potentials and constraints of the different segments of the livestock sector.

This electronic conference is part of the general review process of the ALIVE policy notes, composed of three steps: a) the initial draft, b) the e-discussion and c) the regional workshop. The objective of this e-conference is to give all stakeholders an opportunity to articulate their views on issues related to pastoral mobility and drought management and to have them included in the policy option papers. The results of this electronic conference will feed into a face-to-face regional workshop with a wide audience of African stakeholders to discuss and validate the final policy note.

This is a unique opportunity for local researchers, experts from different disciplines and policy-makers to share their knowledge, express their views and to discuss the direction of current and future policies for the development of the pastoral production sector within a changing livestock production sector in sub-Saharan Africa. We encourage you to seize this opportunity and to participate actively in the e-conference.

  • How to subscribe:

If you want to subscribe to the list, please send a message containing the text "subscribe LEAD-ALIVE-ECONF" to

In case you would want your organization to be displayed on the ALIVE internet platform in the section on pastoral resources, please do also send the details of your organization (name of organization, field of work related to pastoral production systems, link to internet presentation of that organization, contact person).

  • How to unsubscribe:

At any time you can unsubscribe from the list by sending a message containing the text "unsubscribe LEAD-PASTORAL-ECONF-L" to

  • How to send messages:

Once you are subscribed to the distribution list you can participate actively in the discussion of the conference, and send your contribution to the following address:

Plan your contribution in advance:

Please make use of the option to send your contributions in advance of the conference. You can send your contribution from now on to the address of the mailing list or to the moderator indicating the session and point of discussion you would like your contribution to be posted.

  • Agenda:

This conference will take the form of a moderated e-mail debate in English language. However, contributions in French language are welcome and summaries of the discussions will be circulated in both languages. The e-conference will begin on Wednesday 18 October and will last a minimum of 8 weeks. The conference will be conducted in two consecutive sessions – each session spanning 4 weeks. The first session will discuss the paper on drought management and the second session will focus on the arguments put forward in the paper on pastoral mobility.

Session 1: 18 October - 15 November

Pastoral livelihoods between aid dependence and self-reliant drought management?

What are the reasons and options for reducing the vulnerability of pastoral livelihoods to drought?

Sub-theme A: 18 October -2 November

Why invest in a drought management system? Drawing a balance between the costs of late response as opposed to the costs of developing and sustaining a community-based drought management system.

Sub -theme B: 3 November – 15 November

How many people can the pastoral production sustain? Shall public policies facilitate the rehabilitation of destitute pastoralists back or support diversification and exit strategies of pastoral people?

Session 2: 16 November – 13 December

Mobility – the key to making sustainable use of arid and semi-arid areas in sub-Saharan Africa?

Opportunities and threats to mobile pastoral production systems within a changing environment

Sub-theme 1:16 November – 27 November

Defining the overall vision: How can the mobile pastoral production systems contribute to sustainable development of arid and semi-arid areas in sub-Saharan Africa? Is mobility the key element of pastoral production systems in sub-Saharan Africa?

Sub-theme 2: 28 November – 13 December

Pastoral livelihoods in transformation: What are the drivers of the observed trend of reduced mobility? Is there a window of opportunity to induce a change for the better, achieve poverty reduction and improved natural resource management?

The policy papers can be downloaded at the following link:

A more detailed agenda of the conferences is available on the LEAD website at the following link:

  • Procedure:

At the beginning of each session keynote papers and a set of key questions will be distributed via email to the subscribed participants. If you wish to receive these notes and follow the discussion of the e-conference please subscribe to the mailing list. The mailing list serves to distribute all the messages and contributions of the conference. If you are subscribed to the list, all messages from the moderator and from other members of the list will be sent to you via email. In order to prevent overflow of your mailbox, large messages will be sent in form of a short summary together with a link to the entire document. In addition, all messages and contributions will be posted on the LEAD virtual center in the proceedings section of the electronic conference.

All subscribers will be able to read all messages and participate by sending contributions to the moderator of the conference, who will distribute them to the mailing list and post them on the forum. Contributions will be read by the moderators of the conference prior to distribution so as to avoid duplication, mailing errors and to ensure quality and proper content of the discussion. Your contribution can be of different types:

· E-mail with the direct response to raised points of discussions;
· E-mail explaining your personal involvement and perspective based on your personal experience;
· E-mail with direct comment to specific paragraphs in the policy note;
· E-mail containing attachment of documents to share your knowledge, data new research results, upcoming events;
· E-mail drawing attention to examples of successful researches and investigations by different people at local, national and international levels;
· E-mail with questions and suggestions for further points of discussion.

At the end of each session the main points of the discussion will be summarised by the moderator of the e-conference.

For more information on the e-conference please visit the LEAD website:

We count on your active participation in discussions, willingness to exchange experiences and encourage you to also motivate your colleagues and other interested persons to participate in this e-conference.We look forward to a fruitful exchange among specialists from different disciplines and all those who are involved or have an interest in pastoral development.

Virtually yours,

Henning Steinfeld
Chief Livestock Information, Sector Analysis and Policy Branch (AGAL)
Coordinator, Livestock Environment and Development (LEAD) Initiative
FAO HQ, Office C-542
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla
Rome 00100, Italy.

Nikola Rass
Moderator e-conference
Livestock Environment and Development (LEAD) Initiative
Livestock Information, Sector Analysis and Policy Branch (AGAL)

FAO HQ, Office C 536
iale delle Terme di Caracalla
00100 Rome, Italy

Vincent Castel
Manager of LEAD francophone platform
Livestock Environment and Development (LEAD) Initiative
Livestock Information, Sector Analysis and Policy Branch (AGAL)

FAO HQ, Office C 536
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla
00100 Rome, Italy
E-mail :

< Back to What's New