CHALLENGES TO DEVELOPMENT OF SUSTAINABLE VILLAGES

Robert M.Z. Mace

The Research Cluster Rural Ecological Society on Thursday (21/12) held a limited workshop seminar on the Nusantara Village Development Challenge. This event was held to discuss and gain an overview of village development, especially in Eastern Indonesia, and how the relevance of local government policy to the development of this archipelago village. Prof. Dr. Robert M.Z. Lawang as Coordinator of the Research Cluster Rural Ecological Society opened the event with an impressive and thought-provoking lecture. Keynote speech is written directly and presented by him this morning at the semiloka event

“…

We gather here, to begin to see the big problem [red; Issues of sustainable development, poverty issues, technological and social organization and environmental limitations]. Some have seen it immediately after the document came out (1987), or several years after it, or may be lately after the effects of environmental crises are in sight, such as global warming, climate change, natural disasters, and possibly social political disasters economic impacts. Whenever, or how small our response to the serious problem is, it must be appreciated, because the problem can only be overcome through togetherness.

 

It is easy to understand that sociology let alone Rural Sociology alone has limitations in understanding and finding solutions to (i) reducing degrees or slowing down the carrying capacity of the living beings in the long run, or (ii) addressing the immediate impact of environmental crises it is against the poor in rural areas.

emerging world awareness of a very serious environmental crisis. Several times Summits were held to respond to the environmental crisis. According to Foster (2012), Summits was not followed up with full attention, aka the way slowly. In fact, according to the same expert, the development of Modernization of Ecology into a stream called New Exemptionalism as pioneered by an expert from the Dutch Wageningen, Spaargaren, put the technology is able to overcome environmental problems by integrating it with the existing system of Capitalism.

I was startled by the statements of the two conflicting experts. But both are true. When I was on the ground in order to introduce a demonstration plot of irrigated rice paddy farming in 2013 in East Manggarai district, precisely in July, weather and seasonal changes with very high rainfall and long lasting (usually drought), caused rice to crop failure it rains day and night when pollination takes place. With the simple technology of organic fertilization and the method of System of Rice Intensification, rice grows very promising. But the technology does not move at all against the earth’s crisis that can not be opposed by anyone. My conclusion is temporary: New Exemptionalism is successful if supported by nature, or if he is capable with the technology is able to predict with certainty, when disaster occurs.

After I reflected on how the Community Service in East Manggarai was the first step in developing the dharma of Education, and even the Research, although sometimes it was not in line with the very scientific, technological, difficulty of Dikti’s demands. Instead of waiting for acceptance from Dikti, we should accept each other, learn from each other, hand in hand. Togetherness first, the new award Dikti or other external awards.

I closed my speech with a quote taken from Foster’s (2012) conclusion drew my attention to be wary of Capitalism, technology and its agility

“The creation of a just and sustainable society
At a time when environmental social scientists in general are increasingly engaged in a direct attack on the worship of economic growth, becoming more and more critical of capitalism’s destruction of the natural environment—as witnessed by recent radical breakthroughs in the work of thinkers such as …—it is time for environmental sociologists to rededicate themselves to forging a New Ecological Paradigm: as critical human ecologists concerned with the creation of a just and sustainable society (Foster, 2012)”

The event speakers varies from Airlangga University, Mataram University, Hasanuddin University, Sam Ratulangi University, Pattimura University, Cendrawasih University, Directorate General of Rural Development, and Directorate of Indigenous Community Empowerment in Remote Area.