The ‘happy strategies’ game: Matching land and water interventions with landscape needs

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Alan Duncan, Beth Cullen, Catherine Pfeifer and Peter Ballantyne …

Alan Duncan, Beth Cullen, Catherine Pfeifer and Peter Ballantyne
International Forum on Water and Food, Johannesburg, South Africa 14-16 Nov 2011

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  • 1. The ‘Happy Strategies’ Game:Matching Land and Water Interventions with Landscape Needs Alan Duncan, Beth Cullen, Catherine Pfeifer and Peter Ballantyne International Forum on Water and Food, Johannesburg, South Africa 14-16 Nov 2011 http://www.nbdc.org
  • 2. Origins of the Game Nile Project 3: Aims to identify ‘best bet’ practices and technologies to scale out
  • 3. Objectives of the Game Match what we know to a specific landscape Combine practices and interventions into a strategy to address specific issues/problems of a landscape Test an interactive ‘game’ approach to matching supply and demand
  • 4. Process• Groups form, each with a facilitator, set of game cards• Landscape introduction – contours, issues, actors …• Groups formulate initial strategy ideas / review package of ‘practices’ in its hand• Combine practices into a strategy – Exchange wanted / unwanted practices with other groups (with the helpdesk) – Identify essential ‘interventions’ to deliver the strategy – Develop innovations – practices – that you need but are not already in the game. Obtain these from the helpdesk• Share your strategy with the wider group – Document your strategy, how you came to it, major choices, any trade-offs you made
  • 5. Intended result by group An ‘objective’ tailored to the landscape [in the presentation] A strategy to achieve this objective, comprising:  Package of practices  Essential interventions  Needed Innovations
  • 6. Site description – JegeridaThis fictional landscape is derived from real sites of the NBDC
  • 7. Elevation  Wide variation in elevation from Highland to Lowland
  • 8. Slope  Some very steep terrain especially in mid-altitude areas.
  • 9. Rainfall  Moderate rainfall of 900 to 1800 mm per year.  Poorly distributed – most falls in an intense rainy season
  • 10. Soils  Deep volcanic soils  Susceptible to erosion  Prone to waterlogging  Low organic matter content
  • 11. Access to markets and water  One major urban centre but poor infrastructural development  Many water courses for irrigation
  • 12. Erosion potential  Slope and soils mean high erosion potential, particularly in Highland and mid- altitudinal areas.
  • 13. Elevation Zone 1 highland Zone 2 midlands Zone 3 lowlands
  • 14. Innovation platform updates
  • 15. Jegerida innovation platform First meeting held recently Actors: Many government line departments, Local Agricultural Research Center, Grassroots Development NGO Key land and water management constraints identified  Population increase leading to cultivation of steep slopes and land deforestation, soil erosion etc.  Very short land use planning horizon by farmers.  Limited use of improved land and water management technologies  Erosion – loss of soil fertility  Flooding in lowland areas  Poor crop yields
  • 16. Baseline diagnosis Looked at planning, implementation, innovation and livelihoods issues
  • 17. System failures  Top-down implementation and lack of farmer/community participation seem to be major historical factors in deteriorating NRM practices.  Community based institutions may have been weakened due to strong government intervention during a previous regime  Although current approaches are said to be participatory, this is debatable which has implications for long-term sustainability.
  • 18. Collective action not working Planning and implementation  Most successful NRM activities are on farm and initiated and carried out by farmers  Those requiring collective action are not working due to previous efforts in which farmers have been co-opted and ownership has been lacking.
  • 19. Farmer awareness Many govt respondents stated that “farmer awareness” was a major stumbling block to progress – such attitudes are not conducive to building farmer engagement.
  • 20. CampaignsImplementation Quotas Land and water management interventions
  • 21. Farmers often destroy the results oftheir work under collectiveschemes which is perhapsindicative of their feelings towardsthese activities.
  • 22. Summary Overlying issues  Poor food security  High poverty levels Key land and water management constraints identified  Population increase leading to cultivation of steep slopes and land deforestation, soil erosion etc.  Very short land use planning horizon by farmers.  Limited use of improved land and water management technologies  Erosion – loss of soil fertility  Flooding in lowland areas  Poor crop yields System constraints  Top down implementation  Weak local institutions  Market access limited