Unjustified resurgence of anti-Swidden regulation

Unjustified resurgence of anti-Swidden regulation

Sep 7, 2015 - 2:52pm

The last few months have seen the unjustified resurgence of anti-swidden regulation and sentiment in



Carmenta, R., Cammelli, F., Dressler, W., Verbicaro, C., & Zähringer, J. (2021). Between a rock and a hard place: The burdens of uncontrolled fire for smallholders across the tropics. World Development, 145, 105521. (Open Acess,

Dressler, W. (2021). Defending lands and forests: NGO histories, everyday struggles, and extraordinary violence in the Philippines. Critical Asian Studies, 1-32. (

Mostafanezhad, M., & Dressler, W. (2021). Violent atmospheres: Political ecologies of livelihoods and crises in Southeast Asia. Geoforum. (

Dressler, W., Smith, W., Kull, C. A., Carmenta, R., & Pulhin, J. M. (2021). Recalibrating burdens of blame: Anti-swidden politics and green governance in the Philippine Uplands. Geoforum. (early view) (

Song, A. M., Dressler, W., Satizábal, P., & Fabinyi, M. (2021). From conversion to conservation to carbon: The changing policy discourse on mangrove governance and use in the Philippines. Journal of Rural Studies, 82, 184-195. (

Toumbourou, T. D., & Dressler, W. (2021) Sustaining livelihoods in a palm oil enclave: Differentiated gendered responses in East Kalimantan, Indonesia. Asia Pacific Viewpoint. 62(1):40-55 (Open Access,

Pascoe, S., Dressler, W., & Minnegal, M. (2021). Storytelling climate change–Causality and temporality in the REDD+ regime in Papua New Guinea. Geoforum.


Satizábal, P., Dressler, W., Fabinyi, M., & Pido, M. D. (2020). Blue economy discourses and practices: reconfiguring ocean spaces in the Philippines. Maritime Studies, 19(2), 207-21.

Smith, W., & Dressler, W. (2020). Forged in flames: Indigeneity, forest fire and geographies of blame in the Philippines. Postcolonial Studies, 23(4), 527-545.

Neimark, B., Mahanty, S., Dressler, W., & Hicks, C. (2020). Not Just Participation: The Rise of the Eco‐Precariat in the Green Economy. Antipode. (early view)


Dressler, W.  (2019). Governed from above, below, and dammed in between: The biopolitics of (un) making life and livelihood in the Philippine uplands. Political Geography, 73, 123-137.

Fletcher, R., Dressler, W., Anderson, Z. R., & Büscher, B. (2019). Natural capital must be defended: Green growth as neoliberal biopolitics. The Journal of Peasant Studies, 46(5), 1068-1095. (Open Access:

Coleman, J. L., John S. Ascher, D. Bickford, Damayanti Buchori, Annadel Cabanban, Ryan A. Chisholm, Kwek Yan Chong, Dressler, W. et al. (2019)  Top 100 research questions for biodiversity conservation in Southeast Asia. Biological Conservation Vol. 234: 211-220.

Satizábal, P., & Dressler, W. (2019). Geographies of the Sea: Negotiating Human–Fish Interactions in the Waterscapes of Colombia’s Pacific Coast. Annals of the American Association of Geographers, 1-20.

Smith, W., & Dressler, W. (2019). Governing vulnerability: The biopolitics of conservation and climate in upland Southeast Asia. Political Geography, Vol. 72: 76-86.

Fabinyi, M., Dressler, W., & Pido, M. (2019). Access to fisheries in the maritime frontier of Palawan Province, Philippines. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, Vol. 40(1), 92-110.

To, P, and Dressler, W., (2019).  Rethinking ‘Success’: The politics of payment for forest ecosystem services in Vietnam. Land Use Policy Vol. 81: 582-593.


Montefrio, M., and Dressler, W. (2018) Declining Food Security in a Philippine Oil Palm Frontier: The Changing Role of Cooperatives. Development and Change

Fabinyi, M., Dressler, W., & Pido, M. (2018). Moving beyond financial value in seafood commodity chains. Marine Policy Vol. 94: 89-92

Dressler, W., Smith, W., & Montefrio, M. J. (2018). Ungovernable? The vital natures of swidden assemblages in an upland frontier. Journal of Rural Studies. Vol. 61: 343-354

Dressler, W. , Fletcher, R., & Fabinyi, M. (2018). Value from Ruin? Governing Speculative Conservation in Ruptured Landscapes. TRaNS: Trans-Regional and-National Studies of Southeast Asia, Vol. 6(1): 73-99.

Fletcher, R., Dressler, W. , Anderson, Z. R., & Büscher, B. (2018). Natural capital must be defended: green growth as neoliberal biopolitics. The Journal of Peasant Studies, 1-28.


Fletcher, R., Dressler, W., Büscher, B., Anderson, Z. (2017). Debating REDD+ and its Implications: reply to Anglesen et al., Conservation Biology. Vol. 31(3): 718-720. For download:

Dressler, W. (2017). Contesting Moral Capital in the Economy of Expectations of an Extractive Frontier. Annals of the American Association of Geographers. Vol. 107(3):647-665 (

Smith, W., and Dressler, W. (2017). Rooted in place? The Co-production of Knowledge and Space in Agroforestry Assemblages. Annals of the American Association of Geographers. (

Soriano, M., Mohren, F., Ascarrunz, N., Dressler, W., Peña-Claros, M., (2017) Socio-ecological costs of Amazon nut and timber production at community household forests in the Bolivian Amazon. PLOS One. (

Fabinyi, M., Dressler, W., and Pido, M., (in press, 2017). Fish, Trade and Food Security: Moving beyond 'Availability' Discourse in Marine Conservation. Human Ecology.

Büscher, Bram, Robert Fletcher, Dan Brockington, Chris Sandbrook, William Adams, Lisa Campbell, Catherine Corson, Wolfram Dressler, Rosaleen Duffy, Noella Gray, George Holmes, Alice Kelly, Elisabeth Lunstrum, Maano Ramutsindela, Kartik Shanker (in press, 2017). 'Half-Earth or Whole Earth? Radical ideas for conservation and their implications. Oryx


Dressler, W., Wilson, D., Clendenning, J., Cramb, R., Keenan, R., Mahanty, S., Bech Bruun, T., Mertz, O., Lasco, R. (2016). The Impact of Swidden Decline on Livelihoods and Ecosystem Services in Southeast Asia: A Review of the Evidence from 1990 to 2015.  AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment. (open access:

Fabinyi, M., Dressler, W., and Pido, M. (2016). Do FIsh Scales Matter? Diversification and Differentiaiton in Seafood Commodity Chains. Ocean and Coastal Management. Vol. 134: 103-111

Dressler, W., de Konig, J., Montefrio, M., Firn, J. (2016). Land sharing not sparing in the 'green economy': The role of livelihood bricolage in conservation and development in the Philippines. Geoforum. Vol. 76: 75-89

Montefrio, M., and Dressler, W. (2016) The Green Economy and Constructions of the 'Idle' and 'Unproductive' Uplands in the Philippines. World Development. Vol. 79: 114-126

Neimark, B., Mahanty, S., and Dressler, W. (2016) Mapping Value in a 'Green' Commodity Frontier: Revisiting Commodity Chain Analysis. Development and Change. Vol. 47(2): 240-265

Fletcher, R., Dressler, W., Büscher, B. and Anderson, Z. (2016). Questioning REDD+ and the Future of Market-Based Conservation. Conservation Biology. Vol. 30(3): 673-675

To, P., Mahanty, S., and Dressler, W. (2016). Moral economies and markets: ‘Insider’ cassava trading in Kon Tum, Vietnam.  Asia-Pacific Viewpoint. Vol. 57(2):168-179

Baynes, J., Herbohn, J., and Dressler, W. (2016) Power Relationships: Their Effect on the Governance of Community Forestry in the Philippines. Land Use Policy. Vol. 54:169-176


Dressler, W., Mahanty, S., Clendenning, J., and To., P. (2015). Rearticulating Governance through Carbon in the Laos PDR? Environment and Planning C. Vol. 33: 1265-1283

Dressler, W. and Guieb, E. (2015). Violent Enclosures, Violated Livelihoods: Environmental and Military Territoriality in a Philippine Frontier. Journal of Peasant Studies. Vol. 42 (2):323-345  ( - Open Access

Dressler, W., Wilson, D., Cramb, R., et al., (2015). Examining the Impact of Long-fallow Swidden Systems upon Livelihood and Ecosystem Services Compared with Alternative Land Uses in the Uplands of Southeast Asia. Journal of Development Effectiveness. Vol. 7(2): 210-229 (

Dressler, W., McDermott, M., and Schusser, C. (2015) The Politics of Community Forestry in a Global Age – A Critical Analysis. Forest Policy and Economics. Vol. 58:1-4

To, P., Mahanty, S., and Dressler, W. (2015) A New Landlord (Dia chu moi)? Community, Land Conflict and State Forest Companies (SFCs) in Vietnam. Forest Policy and Economics. Vol. 58: 21-28

Büscher, B., Dressler, W. and R. Fletcher (2015). Nature™ Inc Redux: towards a dialectic of logics and excess. Environment and Planning A. Vol. 47: 1-18 

Clendenning, J., Dressler, W., and Richards, C. (2015). Food Justice or Food Sovereignty? Understanding the rise of urban food movements in the USA. Agriculture and Human Values. Vol. 32:1-13

Nguyen, H., Herbohn, J., Clendenning, J., Lamb, D., Dressler, W., Vanclay, J., and Firn, J. (2015). What is the available evidence concerning relative performance of different designs of mixed-species plantings for smallholder and community forestry in the tropics? A systematic map protocol. Environmental Evidence. Vol. 4(1): 1-7


Dressler, W. (2014). Green Governmentality and Swidden Decline on Palawan Island, the Philippines. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers. Vol. 39(2): 250-264

To, P., Mahanty, S., and Dressler, W. (2014). The Social Networks of Corruption in the Vietnamese and Laos Cross-border Timber Trade. Anthropological Forum. Vol. 24(2): 154-174

Mercer, A., de Rijke, K., and Dressler, W. (2014). Silences in the Boom. Coal Seam Gas, Neoliberalizing Discourse and the Future of Regional Australia. The Journal of Political Ecology. Vol. 21(15): 279-302

Clifton, J., Acciaioli, G., Brunt, H., Dressler, W., Fabinyi, M., and Singh, S. (2014). Statelessness and Conservation. Exploring the Implications of an International Governance Agenda. Tilburg Law Review. Vol. 1-2: 81-89


Mahanty, S., Dressler, W., Milne, S., and Filer, C. (2013). Unravelling Property Relations around Forest Carbon. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. Vol. 34(2):188-205

Dressler, W., To, P., and Mahanty, S. (2013). How Biodiversity Conservation Policy Accelerates Agrarian Differentiation: An Account of an Upland Village in Vietnam. Conservation and Society. Vol. 11 (2): 130-143


Ziegler, A., Phelps, J., Yuen, J., Webb, E., [….] Dressler, W., Mertz, O., Pascual, U., Padoch, C., and Koh, L. (2012). Carbon outcomes of major land-cover transitions in SE Asia: Great uncertainties and REDD+ policy implications. Global Change Biology. Vol. 18(10): 3087-3099

van Vliet, N., Mertz, P., Heinimann, A., Langanke, T., [….] Dressler, W., Ziegler, A. (2012) Trends, Drivers and Impacts of Changes in Swidden Cultivation in Tropical Forest-agriculture frontiers: A Global Assessment. Global Environmental Change. Vol. 22(2):418-429

To, P., Dressler, W., and Mahanty, S. (2012) The Prospects for Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Vietnam: A Look at Three Payment Schemes. Human Ecology. Vol. 40(2): 237-249

Roth, R. and Dressler, W. (2012) Market-oriented Conservation Governance: The Particularities of Place. Geoforum. Vol. 43(3): 363-366

Büscher, B. and Dressler, W. (2012) Commodity Conservation. The Restructuring of Community Conservation in South Africa and the Philippines. Geoforum. Vol. 43(3): 367-376


ATM, J., Short, T., Dressler, W., and Kahn, A. (2011). Can Micro-credit Worsen Poverty? Development in Practice. Vol. 21(8):1109-1121

Dressler, W. and Fabinyi, M. (2011). Swidden Decline and the Rise of Grouper Fishing on Palawan Island, the Philippines. Journal of Agrarian Change. Vol. 11(4): 536-555

Dressler, W. (2011). First to Third Nature: The Rise of Capitalist Conservation on Palawan Island, the Philippines. Journal of Peasant Studies. Vol. 38(3): 533-557

Dressler, W. and Roth, R. (2011) The Good, the Bad and the Contradictory: Neoliberal Conservation Governance in Rural Southeast Asia. World Development. Vol. 39(5): 851-862


Dressler, W. and Pulhin, J. (2010). The Shifting Ground of Swidden Agriculture on Palawan Island, the Philippines. Agriculture and Human Values. Vol. 27(4): 445-459

Dressler, W. and McDermott, M. (2010). Indigenous Peoples and Migrants: Social Categories, Rights, and Policies for Protected Areas in the Philippine Uplands. Journal of Sustainable Forestry, Vol. 29(2): 328-361.

Dressler, W., Büscher, B., Schoon, M., Brockington, D. Hayes, T. Kull, C., McCarthy, J. and Streshta, K. (2010) From Hope to Crisis and Back? A Critical History of the Global CBNRM Narrative. Environmental Conservation. Vol. 37(1):1-11.

Dressler, W. and Babidge, S. (2010). Identity, Difference and Development. International Studies Association Compendium. Oxford: Blackwell Press.

Novellino, D. and Dressler, W. (2010). The Role of ‘Hybrid’ NGOs in the Conservation and Development of Palawan Island, the Philippines. Society and Natural Resources. Vol. 2 (23): 165-180.


Pulhin, J. and Dressler, W. (2009) People, Power and Timber: The Politics of Community-based Forest Management. Journal of Environmental Management, Vol. 91: 206-214

Cramb, R.A., Colfer, C.J.P., Dressler, W., Laungaramsri, P., Le Quang Trung, Mulyoutami, E., Peluso, N.L., and Wadley, R.L. (2009). Swidden transformations and rural livelihoods in Southeast Asia. Human Ecology. Vol. 3 (37): 323-346.

Mertz, O., Leisz, S., Heinimann, A. Rerkasem, K. T., Dressler, W., Pham, V.C., Schmidt-Vogt, D., Colfer, C., Epprecht, M., Padoch, C. Potter, L. (2009). Who counts? Demography of swidden cultivators in Southeast Asia. Human Ecology. Vol. 3(37): 281-289.

Dressler, W. (2009) Reinforcing Local Inequity and Resistance through Community-based Conservation on Palawan Island, the Philippines. In Turner, S. and Caouette, D. (eds) Agrarian Angst and Rural Resistance in Contemporary Southeast Asia. Routledge Press.


Dressler, W. and Turner, S. (2008) The Persistence of Social Differentiation in the Philippine Uplands. Journal of Development Studies. Vol. 44(10):1472-1492

Dressler, W. and Büscher, B. (2008) Market Triumphalism and the CBNRM ‘crisis’ at the South African section of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park. Geoforum Vol. 39:452-465


Büscher, B. and Dressler, W. (2007). Fortress Conservation versus Community-Based Conservation? On the rapidly increasing tensions between actors in the environment-development nexus. Conservation and Society Vol. 5(4): 1-26

Mavungha, C. and Dressler, W. (2007). On the Local Community: The Language of Disengagement? Conservation and Society. Vol. 59(1):44-59


Dressler, W. (2006). Co-opting Conservation: Migrant Resource Control and Access to National Park Management in the Philippine Uplands. Development and Change Vol. 37(2): 401-426

Dressler, W., Kull, C., and Meredith, T. (2006). The Politics of Decentralizing National Parks Management. Journal of Political Geography. Vol. 25:1-28