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UK Research and Innovations (2019)

A cultural landscape approach to improve governance of pastoral food systems in East Africa and Beyond

Governance Pastoral Food

Titre : A cultural landscape approach to improve governance of pastoral food systems in East Africa and Beyond

Pays/Région : Arid Regions East Africa

Durée : déc. 19 - août 21

Référence projet : AH/T004282/1
Catégorie : Research Grant

Résumé
Cultural beliefs and practices associated with extensive mobile pastoralism enable people to live in arid regions. In East Africa modernization and increasing population densities combined with national economic policies have caused fragmentation of rangelands and soil degradation, and thus broader economic and ecological problems. Community-based rangeland conservancies provide a potential solution to these challenges and address several Sustainable Development Goals by providing food security and improved nutrition ; restoring degraded land ; conserving ecosystems and their services ; and establishing more inclusive forms of governance that incorporate previously under-represented groups, such as women or young, unmarried men.

Despite some successes, there is a great deal of variation both in the willingness of pastoral groups to establish conservancies, and in the effectiveness and inclusiveness of governance in those conservancies that have been established. Relationships between different conservancies in challenging times have also shown the limitations of an approach based on the functioning of single conservancies. A greater understanding of how to manage rangelands more effectively and improve pastoral food systems can come from understand the landscape of different levels and scales at play in the rangelands, and the diverse cultures and institutions for managing these resources. Attempts to establish new models of community governance and rangeland management, as envisaged by the conservancy model, need to be taken up and accepted by communities, and therefore need to be suited and adapted to the different cultural and ecological situations that make up the landscape.

In this partnership we will bring together a network of researchers from economics, anthropology, behavioural ecology, and psychology with policy makers in order to understand how contextually-driven policies can be developed that effectively promote sustainable and inclusive systems of pastoral food production in a way that respects and leverages the traditions and culture of pastoralist communities, and takes into account the interactions between different levels of these systems.

Lead Research Organisation : University of Exeter

Financement : Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Budget  : £173 376

UK Research and Innovations

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