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Agroforestry extension and protected areas conservation in the Brazilian Amazon

Ikemoto, Erika (2016) Agroforestry extension and protected areas conservation in the Brazilian Amazon. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent,. (KAR id:56931)

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This thesis explored agroforestry extension's role in protected areas (PAs) conservation, focusing on extension activities conducted from 2010 to 2011 at Saracá-Taquera National Forest and Rio Trombetas Biological Reserve in the Brazilian Amazon. It relied on a mixed methods approach; data collected during an extended stay in four participating communities was complemented by interviews with PA and extension staffs. I suggest that agroforestry extension has limited potential to contribute to PA conservation at the study site. First, agroforestry was promoted by extensionists as a land use that would recover deforested areas, but their narratives tended to overlook empirical evidence. They plotted agroforestry against a 'crisis' background that reproduced, rather than critically assessed, policy discourses depicting shifting cultivation as an important driver of deforestation.

Second, even considering that some do participate in the agroforestry project and could extract livelihood benefits, the expectation that agroforestry can replace activities perceived as threats is unlikely to materialise. I suggest that locals' participation was influenced both by broader factors - e.g., past experiences with PAs and social ties to community gatekeepers - and by factors specifically regarding the project - e.g., local perceptions of agroforestry. I also argue that, considering a best-case scenario in which market constraints are overcome, agroforestry could potentially reduce local inequalities significantly. The engagement of both men and women would be important in the management of competition between agroforestry and other activities in mixed livelihoods. Finally, I suggest that main threats to PAs' biodiversity include turtle hunting and cattle ranching, but also mining - the third would not be addressed by agroforestry. Furthermore, I argue that the first two are unlikely to be reduced by agroforestry as cultural incentives to hunt are strong, and economic motivations would hinder the adoption of agroforestry by hunters and favour the combination (rather than replacement) of ranching with agroforestry.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Uncontrolled keywords: quilombolas, forest policy, discourse analysis, shifting agriculture, slash-and-burn agriculture, Atlantic Forest, participation, adoption, livelihoods, income generation, Podocnemis expansa, hunting, cattle ranching
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation
Depositing User: Users 1 not found.
Date Deposited: 22 Aug 2016 13:00 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 13:36 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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