Welcome to Sustainable-Livelihoods

Our Mission

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Welcome to Sustainable-livelihoods.com, a site dedicated to the contributions to development by Dr. Naresh Singh. It is organised around the broad theme of sustainable livelihoods a field in which Dr. Singh became recognized over the years as a global leader. The journey through which his ideas on the subject evolved are outlined in a presentation he made to University of Guyana Alumni Association of Toronto in September 2003. Interested readers can also peruse his bio and curriculum vitae. Early in his work in this field, he defined livelihoods as the activities, assets, and entitlements through which people make their living, and he considered livelihoods as sustainable when they were economically effective, socially equitable, ecologically sound and resilient i.e. had the capacity to cope with and recover from shocks and stresses. This was derived from earlier work by Chambers and Conway.

Dr. Naresh Singh

Dr. Naresh Singh has nearly 30 years of experience as an international development practitioner and adviser, with a special focus on sustainable livelihoods, poverty, environment and legal empowerment.  More recently he has been working as an independent consultant in international development with a focus on livelihoods in conflict countries.  Previously, he was Principal Adviser at UNDP HQ on Poverty and Sustainable Livelihoods, and before that he was Program Director for Community Adaptation and Sustainable Livelihoods at the International Institute for Sustainable Development in Canada. He is a specialist in development program design and evaluation.

Legal Rights of the Poor

"This book is a must-read for anyone and everyone concerned with one of the most pressing problems that faces the world today: How best to fight and win the global war on poverty, the conditions of which still afflict a large part of humanity. The author is one of the major architects and a practitioner of what has become known as the sustainable livelihoods approach to development. In this book, he makes a powerful and persuasive argument about the need to get at the roots of poverty in the structure of social inequality and change the relation of power relations between the haves and the have-nots. A key part of the solution, Singh argues, can be found in the legal empowerment of the poor."


—Henry Veltmeyer, Professor Emeritus, International Development Studies, Saint Mary’s University.

Building on the Wealth of the Poor

Dr. Naresh Singh's Sustainable Livelihoods is offering a solution that does not advocate any ideological change but works with and within any of the "isms". It is basically about working with small groups within any nation to develop whatever economic activity they are engaged in, that is marginally subsistent, into something more productive, viable and sustainable in the long run to both the group and the eco-system in which economic activity is based.

Yemen Summary Report

This publication authored by Naresh Singh ( 2014) is the outcome of the first ever multidimensional livelihoods assessment carried out in conflict-affected areas (Yemen).

Making the Law Work for Everyone

Naresh Singh was executive director of the Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor which produced this publication.

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