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Session 5.6 The role of informal social networks in agroforestry adoption and management
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Session 5.6 The role of informal social networks in agroforestry adoption and management

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  • Previous research focuses on linking producer attribute data with management and adoption of innovation
  • widespread deforestation through forest conversion to cocoa production.
    Approximately 55% of Ghana’s labour force is associated with the cocoa industry,
    Small-scale farm production of cocoa has developed from a minimal proportion of world production in the early 19th century to currently over 60% of the global total, with Ghana maintaining 1,200,000 ha of land in cocoa production
    the expansion rate of agricultural land in Ghana is 2.5% annually for tree and food crops
  • widespread deforestation through forest conversion to cocoa production.
    Approximately 55% of Ghana’s labour force is associated with the cocoa industry,
    Small-scale farm production of cocoa has developed from a minimal proportion of world production in the early 19th century to currently over 60% of the global total, with Ghana maintaining 1,200,000 ha of land in cocoa production
    the expansion rate of agricultural land in Ghana is 2.5% annually for tree and food crops
  • —whether network diversity promotes opportunity or economic development leads to more diversified contacts—
  • In regions experiencing profound climate change impacts,
  • Transcript

    • 1. The role of informal social networks in agroforestry adoption and management Marney E. Isaac University of Toronto World Congress on Agroforestry, Feb. 2014 Collaborators: Forestry Research Institute of Ghana Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology Funding: International Development Research Centre Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada
    • 2. Agroforestry management under environmental and economic change – Continuously changing biophysical interactions operate in diverse agroforestry systems – Producers require access to specialized information in order to appropriately manage productive and persistent systems
    • 3. Agroforestry and networks • Agroforestry management prescriptions are based on informed diagnosis and manipulation of an agroecosystem • To do this, producers may seek information from formal sources [e.g. organizations or institutions] or informal sources [e.g. neighbours] • Reposition our understanding of adoption of sustainable practices relative to relational data = social networks
    • 4. Theoretical considerations • Network theory suggests both information and transfer via personal network ties (Granovetter 1973; Coleman 1991; Burt 1992; Rogers 1995) – Information related to a particular practice is frequently embedded in social transactions • Social network configurations differentially impact diffusion and durability of ideas: – Understanding barriers to access and identifying key actors in the development and transfer of critical information
    • 5. Information networks of agroforestry systems • 1) what is the structure, and environmental consequence, of informal information networks? • 2) how do heterogeneous actors impact network structures and agroforestry practices? • 3) do distinct information network topologies coincide with predictable patterns of land use change to and from agroforestry?
    • 6. Whole network structure Isaac et al (2007) Ecology and Society
    • 7. How do organizational ties affect the structure of these networks?
    • 8. Are these networks correlated to adoption of agroforestry? 7 r = 0.41; P = 0.043 r = 0.35; P < 0.100 6 Species richness 5 4 3 2 1 0 0 Individual network efficiency • • 20 40 60 80 Individual network density Individuals in diffuse but diverse networks with few redundant ties are more likely to report trees on farm Dense, homophilous networks, which often promote collective action, may be less effective in innovation driven agricultural systems Isaac (2012) Agricultural Systems
    • 9. Source: Van Geest 2011 International Migration
    • 10. Agroforestry information networks exposed to new members
    • 11. Agroforestry information networks exposed to new members
    • 12. Agroforestry information networks exposed to new members o o o Isaac et al (2014) Ecology and Society Migrant farmers in brokerage roles Tend to use pro-environmental management regimes including agroforestry practices Positioned to transfer environmentally-adapted agroforestry management
    • 13. Socio-spatial dynamics of agroforestry management • Do network topologies correlate with land use change to and from agroforestry systems?
    • 14. Dynamic land cover • Manage three types of land use: • Crop cultivation • Timber plantations • Cocoa agroforestry systems
    • 15. Land use distribution = institution = NGO active = land use types
    • 16. o Centrally positioned and NGO active farmers overrepresent those with multiple land use types o Diverse, but not necessarily more, network ties correlate to land diversification and the emergence of agroforestry land use
    • 17. Implications • Network metrics relate to agroforestry management strategies • Couple social networks and actor position to land use outcomes • Social network diversity appears as a strong structural indicator for the persistence of agricultural landscapes with high environmental services • A social networks approach elucidates the flow and coordination of information on suitable but innovative agroforestry management
    • 18. 2012 2013
    • 19. 2012 2013
    • 20. Collaborator Coordinator Gatekeeper Liaison Are network topologies related to land use change to and from agroforestry systems?
    • 21. Environmental change and networks Source: Van Geest 2011 International Migration
    • 22. Brokerage roles Collaborator Coordinator Gatekeeper Liaison Adapted from Hanneman and Riddle 2005

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