This involves providing an overall picture of the local communities and institutions so that our clients minimise social risks as they begin their initial activities.
So-called traditional communities have complex and very specific institutions. They are organised around family groupings and political and religious alliances, and often operate according to an oral tradition. We propose a simple and consistent approach which consists in compiling specific information that is complementary and directly applicable and can assist in decision-making and ensuring a minimum understanding of an area when conducting initial activities (exploration, prefeasibility etc.).
Two types of document are produced:
- An ethno-anthropological report containing recommendations and advice, combined with a database for each village, the list of all cultural heritage sites, local traditional and administrative institutions and their representatives and the location of village limits.
- Maps showing cultural heritage sites and village limits.
Our pragmatic approach looks at projects as a whole and consists in gathering, prior to any baseline study, on-site information on the region and communities in which the project is to be conducted. The advantages are clear: a basic outline is established that provides focus for subsequent studies, the client obtains a clear overview of the actions to be undertaken, good-quality relations can be established among all stakeholders and the destruction of locally significant sites can be avoided. Furthermore, the information gathered for these preparatory studies provides a head start for later baseline studies and those parts won’t have to be redone for the future ESIA.