Changing livelihoods and protected area management: a case study of charcoal production in south-west Madagascar

Gardner, Charlie J. and Gabriel, Firengea and St. John, Freya A.V. and Davies, Zoe G. (2015) Changing livelihoods and protected area management: a case study of charcoal production in south-west Madagascar. Oryx, . ISSN 0030-6053. E-ISSN 1365-3008. (doi:https://doi.org/10.1017/S0030605315000071) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0030605315000071

Abstract

Protected areas are usually conceived and managed as static entities, although this approach is increasingly viewed as unrealistic given climate change and ecosystem dynamics. The ways in which people use land and/or natural resources within and around protected areas can also shift and evolve temporally but this remains an under-acknowledged challenge for protected area managers. Here we investigate the factors driving a rapid rise in charcoal production within a new, multiple-use protected area in Madagascar, to inform appropriate management responses. We conducted a questionnaire survey of charcoal producers to ascertain the mix of livelihood activities they practised in and years previously. Respondents had diversified their livelihood activities over time, and cultivation and pastoralism had decreased as primary sources of revenue. Reasons for the growing reliance on charcoal production include the reduced viability of alternative livelihoods (primarily farming), as a result of changing rainfall patterns and the loss of irrigation infrastructure, as well as a growing need for cash to support themselves and their families. Our results suggest that charcoal production is not a desirable activity but a safety net when times are difficult. Conservation efforts to ameliorate underlying factors driving livelihood change, such as dam restoration, could reduce the prevalence of charcoal production, but simultaneous action to cut demand is also required. We recommend that mechanisms to detect, understand and respond to social change are integrated systematically into protected area management planning, alongside traditional biodiversity monitoring.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: Behaviour, biodiversity, climate change, conservation, energy, migration, poverty alleviation, social change
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH75 Conservation (Biology)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > DICE (Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology)
Depositing User: F.A.V. St-John
Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2015 16:40 UTC
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2016 11:17 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/52467 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
  • Depositors only (login required):