The Development Process in Small Island States

The Development Process in Small Island States

The Development Process in Small Island States

The Development Process in Small Island States

Synopsis

Islands are coming under increasing environmental and social pressure, especially under the impact of tourism. The small scale of islands which are almost enclosed systems provides researchers with ideal cases in which to observe processes and test theories. The Development Process in Small Island Statesfocuses on the political security, tourism, gender issues, ecosystems, landscapes and economies of island communities. The contributors examine islands at different stages of the development process. They provide broad overviews of development issues relevant to islands, and identify the common interests that link islands and those who research them together. Other essays examine a range of themes all based on original research in the context of specific islands. With case studies drawn from the Caribbean, the Mediterranean and the Pacific, the book describes the position of islands as ecologically and economically vulnerable sites.

Excerpt

This monograph examines a number of environmental and economic issues relating to island development. The chapters are based on papers first presented at the Commonwealth Geographical Bureau Conference on Small Island Development held in Malta in March 1990. The conference brought together about forty researchers from fifteen Commonwealth and four non-Commonwealth countries and was pitched at a broad level, not only to ensure the widest possible geographical coverage, but also to draw comprehensive material from islands at very different stages in the development process to see what lessons could be learned and exchanged.

Islands have long attracted the attention of geographers and researchers in cognate disciplines and, moreover, research has been spread over a range of economic, environmental and social issues. International conferences have been held at fairly regular intervals and most of the comparative studies of island development have originated at such meetings. One of the earliest initiatives to debate the human issues specific to smaller territories occurred in 1962, when the Institute of Commonwealth Studies in the University of London began a seminar series. Seminars were held at regular intervals over a two-year period and more than twenty papers demonstrated the extent to which many small countries shared common problems. About half of these papers were subsequently published in a volume edited by Burton Benedict (1967). In some ways this book set a pattern which many later works followed; chapters on general themes such as political, economic and demographic characteristics were followed by case studies of

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