GUWAHATI, July 29 � The National Council for Science and Technology Communication (NCSTC) has supported a programme titled �Learning for cogent living� conceptualised by a regional NGO of Assam, the Society for Socio-economic Awareness and Environment Protection (SSEAEP), that is aimed at helping the population lead a rational way of life with better understanding about science, technology and environment.
The approach of the project is in tune with the principle of science and technology literacy (STL) and education for sustainable development (ESD).
Considering the fact that the North-eastern region of India is located in an ecological sensitive zone with a rich biodiversity and ethno-cultural diversity, the people face different adverse environmental situations from erosion, landslide, flood, thunderstorm, as well as irregular weather conditions. Such a phenomenon along with other geo-ecological factors creates constraints of drinking water, drainage, agricultural failure, health-related problems etc.
�In this context, developing science and technology literacy among the people is becoming an important need of the hour along with other interventions,� said a press statement.
As per the mandate of the project, the SSEAEP has initiated a study in the region adopting two approaches � one is content analysis of print media coverage of the last fifteen years (1999-2013) from the region on science and technology issues and superstition, and another one is field-level location-specific study and opinion assessment of the local people of the NE States, with guidance from and collaboration with the State Science and Technology Council and NGOs.
According to Jayanta Kumar Sarma, co-ordinator of the project, the observations from the ongoing study indicate that, there are science and technology-related �location specific� issues in the region, which need specific approaches.
He said that many superstitious practices are found related to health issues, scarcity of quality drinking water, weather-related phenomenon etc. �So, there is the need for capacity building among the people in the areas of water purification, water resource management, indoor environment management etc. Improvised tools and techniques of observation to develop understanding of environmental phenomenon, improvisation and re-interpretation of positive aspects of traditional practices related with natural resource management are a few things which need specific attention,� he added.
From this field-level study, background reports will be prepared based on which, a regional workshop will be organised with participation of resource persons from eight States to design and develop communication packages and module.