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Impacts of land use policy on environment, wildlife, demographic and socioeconomic indicators in East African savannas - the Serengeti ecological unit


The main objectives are as follows:
* To analyse the long term outcomes of different land use policies on environment, wildlife, demography and socio-economic indicators in the Serengeti Ecological Unit, which provides a natural experiment with an ecologically and ethnically continuous ecosystem divided into zones of comparable and contrasting policy lying either side of a national border representing major economic and political contrasts.
* To use methods from broad-scale to micro-level to interrelate land use policy and economic contexts in the SEU and environs with:
- Long term vegetation and habitat change in different blocks,
- Changes in human, livestock and wildlife populations with different policies,
- Agro/pastoralist responses to land use policy and their implications.
* To use statistical and quantitative analyses to help identify proximate causes and driving forces shaping these interrelations, and to develop explanatory models.
* To carry out active dissemination by international seminars and publications, and through the national management roles of both DC partners.
Expected Outcome

This research will deliver useful empirical information and a basic structure for analysing, predicting and evaluating land use policy outcomes, as a tool of development and government. It will set up a coherent framework for analysis of economic and ecological implications of policy change, and identify hard outcome measures as reliable indicators of impacts of different policies in terms of economic and ecological change. It will derive explanatory models distinguishing driving forces and proximal causes in the interrelations between policy changes and economic / environmental trends, and provide a test of competing hypotheses over current debates on intensification and degradation; on dryland system dynamics; and on common property resources. It should lead to generalisable conclusions of importance to the future management of this and other savanna ecosystems in the face of economic, political and climatic change. These will be disseminated by international seminar, scientific publications, theses and direct input to DC partner institute policy development and implementation programmes.
The key activities envisaged are:
* Definition of savanna land use policies through archival and literature search.
* Definition of study strata and outcome indicators using natural, cultural, socio-economic/political, management and tenure variables.
* Data collection:
* Remote sensing / land cover mapping (AVHRR/5 km, SPOT XS ; ground truth);
* Collation of aerial census data on wildlife, livestock and people 1960s-1990s;
* PRA survey of significance of for biodiversity and pastoral management;
* Demographic census analysis (1960s, 70s, 80s) complemented by intensive survey of poorly known agropastoralist populations and welfare trends ;
* PRA survey of land / livestock holdings, land use trends, yields, food security.
* Model regional dynamics using GIS as unifying spatial framework and testing for associations between policy and other explanatory variables and specified outcomes.
* Comparative analysis of policy options; dissemination, manpower development and policy application.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Gower Street
United Kingdom

Participants (3)

Kenya Wildlife Service

2 Nairobi

Dar Es Salaam
Université Catholique de Louvain
3,Place L. Pasteur 3
1348 Louvain-la-neuve