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IBS Associations

Environment and Society Program

Program on International Development

Center for the Governance of Natural Resources

Center for Collaborative Synthesis in Archaeology

Research Interests

cultural heritage, indigenous populations, stakeholder engagement, climate change, disaster risk reduction

Brief Biography

Dr. Douglas has a B.A. Distinction in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Alberta, Canada, a MSc. in Quaternary Sciences from the Climate Change Institute, University of Maine, Orono, USA and a Ph.D. in Geography (emphasis in climatology), Arizona State University, USA. Diane’s academic studies were interdisciplinary, emphasizing climate change spanning the past 2.5 million years and human-environment interaction spanning the past 20,000 years. Dr. Douglas has consulted in 19 countries, serving as Principal Advisor, Project Manager or Team Leader for engineering and environmental firms as well as a consultant to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), African Development Bank (AfDB), Asian Development Bank (ADB), European Bank on Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), International Finance Corporation (IFC), and World Bank. Dr. Douglas’ international work required extensive stakeholder consultation, analysis of national policies and institutional capacity, identifying the requirements for governance reform and capacity building, making recommendations for agriculture and infrastructure development, and protecting cultural resources of local, national and international significance. Recognizing the consistent failure of governments and developers to adequately consult with local, indigenous and descendant (LID) communities, Douglas co-founded the Initiative for Sustainable Development in Africa (ISDAF). ISDAF was established to identify and share methods that can be implemented to improve engagement with LID communities and in turn help reduce forced migration and conflict resulting from people losing access to their traditional lands and resources. Dr. Douglas is currently working with the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) in Rome, to develop a course on stakeholder engagement, particularly as it pertains to LID communities.