Fieldtrip to the Indian Bengal delta

by Sumana Banerjee

On March 7th 2020, three DECCMA colleagues-Katharine Vincent, Tuhin Ghosh and Sumana Banerjee-embarked on a visit to the Indian Sundarban Delta. This activity was undertaken as a scoping visit for a potential small project which aims to look into the gender-responsive adaptation in the delta.

River transport is essential for the delta population

The team tested some key findings on adaptation which emerged from the household surveys undertaken in DECCMA and learnt about people’s development aspirations, and how they can be made resilient in the context of a changing climate.

Focus groups (held separately with women and men) in two villages of two different islands and key informant interviews with the local governance and practitioners helped in adding richness and depth to explain the quantitative data obtained through DECCMA’s household survey. They also exposed some gaps which would have otherwise been filled in with external (false) assumptions.

As well as giving the research team the opportunity to validate research findings, they also helped in shaping ways of working forward in the project. The team took the opportunity to learn from people how they would like to receive messages relating to climate adaptation based on findings from DECCMA.

Needless to say, like any other good fieldtrip, this was an enriching experience and the team looks forward to get back to the field again to share the findings and design messages to appropriately deliver to the knowledge users to enable gender-sensitive adaptation.