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Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com
Perceptions of Environmental Change:
Using Qualitative Me...
2
Outline
• Background: Community-Based Forest Management Program (CFP)
• Impact Evaluation of CFP: Objectives and methodo...
Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com
Background
4
The USAID-funded Community-based
Forest Management Program (CFP)
• CFP aims to establish the largest REDD+ program in Za...
5
Project Area: Eastern Province and
Program Districts in Zambia
6
Community-Based Forest Management
Program: Intervention
CFP initiates local livelihood and community development
project...
7
Community-Based Forest Management
Program: Intervention
Potential livelihood initiatives to promote forest conservation
...
Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com
CFP Impact Evaluation
9
CFP Impact Evaluation (IE):
Purpose
USAID’s primary learning objectives for the CFP IE:
1. Understand how REDD+ programs...
10
CFP Impact Evaluation:
Research Questions
Example research questions include:
• Has CFP resulted in increased knowledge...
11
CFP IE: Mixed Methods Design
• Quasi-experimental Difference-in-Differences (DD) approach,
complemented with qualitativ...
12
Culture and the Evaluation of
Environmental Programs:
Drawing from the literature:
• Krause et al. (2015) propose using...
13
Grounding Culture: Participatory
Mapping Excercises
• Kawakami et al. (2008) note that participatory maps spatially
ref...
Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com
CFP IE Illustrative Findings:
Perceptions of Deforestatio...
15
Observed changes in
environment: Deforestation
• HH survey respondents state that the majority of forests in
project ar...
16
Observed changes in environment:
Rainfall and seasonal patterns
• 82% of HHs noted a reduction in rainfall in the past ...
17
Perceptions of environmental
change: Is it a problem?
HH survey respondents asked to rank top 5 development problems
fa...
18
Perceptions of environmental
change: Is it a problem?
HHs asked to rate severity of problems on the development of the
...
19
Perceptions of environmental
change: Is it a problem?
• “It is a big problem because it has brought poverty, food is no...
20
What’s causing environmental
change?
• Deforestation contributes to climate change: “(M): You said that
you haven’t had...
21
What’s causing environmental
change?
• Biblical explanations: “Like these days our thinking, the world
has changed, we ...
22
What’s causing environmental
change?
More reasons:
• Changes in population: “Tress have reduced…Trees have reduced
due ...
23
Environmental change: What
can be done?
• “(M): You said rain pattern has reduced, what have done about it?
(R1): We ha...
24
Participatory Mapping
Excercises
Women in Nyimba District
25
Unique Findings: Participatory
Mapping Data
Spatialization of resource use:
• Agricultural fields are “outside the vill...
26
Unique Findings: Participatory
Mapping Data
The research agenda, power relations and politics of control:
• “(R): What ...
Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com
Conclusions & Lessons
Learned
28
Does the CFP IE design
integrate culture?
• Documents local understandings of causes of climate change
(understandings ...
29
Moving forward, Lessons
Learned:
Conceptual:
• Acknowledge that more than basic economic logics frame behavior
• Use ba...
30
Questions and
Acknowledgements
Thank you.
• Questions?
• ccaron@clarku.edu
• stephanie.fenner@cloudburstgroup.com
Ackno...
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AEA Presentation: Perceptions of Environmental Change

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Using Qualitative Methods to Ground Culture in the Evaluation of Environmental Programs. Presented at the American Evaluation Association's Evaluation 2015 Conference. Credit:

- Cynthia Caron, Clark University and The Cloudburst Group
- Stephanie Fenner, The Cloudburst Group

Learn more: http://bit.ly/TCGcbfp

Published in: Data & Analytics
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AEA Presentation: Perceptions of Environmental Change

  1. 1. Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com Perceptions of Environmental Change: Using Qualitative Methods to Ground Culture in the Evaluation of Environmental Programs Cynthia Caron, Clark University and The Cloudburst Group Stephanie Fenner, The Cloudburst Group November 13, 2015
  2. 2. 2 Outline • Background: Community-Based Forest Management Program (CFP) • Impact Evaluation of CFP: Objectives and methodology • Illustrative Findings: Perceptions of deforestation and climate change • Conclusions and Lessons Learned
  3. 3. Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com Background
  4. 4. 4 The USAID-funded Community-based Forest Management Program (CFP) • CFP aims to establish the largest REDD+ program in Zambia. Four primary objectives: 1. Empower and equip communities to lessen the drivers of deforestation; 2. Establish and improve forest and natural resource management plans; 3. Promote alternative livelihoods to unsustainable charcoal and timber production; 4. Implement pay-for-performance and/or revenue-sharing programs for forest conservation and carbon sequestration.
  5. 5. 5 Project Area: Eastern Province and Program Districts in Zambia
  6. 6. 6 Community-Based Forest Management Program: Intervention CFP initiates local livelihood and community development projects to promote the adoption of alternative livelihoods and energy sources. Projects designed to: • Provide tangible benefits that replace the income and/or livelihood benefits received from deforestation or forest degradation activities, such as charcoaling and timber harvesting • Promote business minded approach to support development of sustainable enterprises.
  7. 7. 7 Community-Based Forest Management Program: Intervention Potential livelihood initiatives to promote forest conservation include: • Eco-charcoaling • Conservation farming (maize) • Eco-tourism • Non-timber forest product (NTFP) extraction / small business development
  8. 8. Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com CFP Impact Evaluation
  9. 9. 9 CFP Impact Evaluation (IE): Purpose USAID’s primary learning objectives for the CFP IE: 1. Understand how REDD+ programs impact land tenure and property rights (LTPR) and related livelihoods, either positively or negatively. 2. Learn what aspects of REDD+ programming are most effective in incentivizing long-term carbon sequestration and reduced GHG emissions from forests and landscapes.
  10. 10. 10 CFP Impact Evaluation: Research Questions Example research questions include: • Has CFP resulted in increased knowledge and awareness of deforestation and climate change? • Which CFP benefits do stakeholders cite as effective incentives for the adoption of behaviors that reduce deforestation, degradation and GHG emissions?
  11. 11. 11 CFP IE: Mixed Methods Design • Quasi-experimental Difference-in-Differences (DD) approach, complemented with qualitative component. • Survey data collected at baseline (Spring 2015), midline, and end line. • This presentation draws on baseline data from 4395 household surveys; 80 focus group discussions (FGDs) with local stakeholders, including women and youth; 40 participatory mapping exercises with separate groups of men and women.
  12. 12. 12 Culture and the Evaluation of Environmental Programs: Drawing from the literature: • Krause et al. (2015) propose using an “assessment framework that focuses on subjective perspectives on adaptation (i.e., perceptions and judgments of individual decision-makers) and links them with objective perspectives” (38). • Samuels et al. (2011) “evaluations characterized by Western culture and ways of thinking overlook indigenous knowledge(s), threatening the cultural relevance and validity of evaluation results”(184).
  13. 13. 13 Grounding Culture: Participatory Mapping Excercises • Kawakami et al. (2008) note that participatory maps spatially reflect the cultural views of the participant mapmakers’ forest environment, allowing stakeholders to participate in an evaluation through a practice that is driven by and with them. • Sletto (2009) proposes participatory mapping can highlight contests surrounding rights, identities, and authenticities, while simultaneously facilitating the unveiling of the multiple, complex relations of power that shape landscapes in the Global South.
  14. 14. Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com CFP IE Illustrative Findings: Perceptions of Deforestation and Climate Change
  15. 15. 15 Observed changes in environment: Deforestation • HH survey respondents state that the majority of forests in project area are in ‘good’ or ‘very good’ condition (62%, 2482). • Despite generally good rating, the overall condition of most forests (42%, 1688) was noted to have worsened in the past 3 years; the overall condition of 33% (1305) of forests was noted to have remained the same. • Respondents also reported that 35% (1405) of forests have decreased slightly in area, and 38% (1540) of forests have decreased in thickness and forest cover.
  16. 16. 16 Observed changes in environment: Rainfall and seasonal patterns • 82% of HHs noted a reduction in rainfall in the past 3 years; 28% noted changes in the intensity/concentration of rain • 44% of HHs noted changes in seasonal patterns • “In the past it used to rain and the rains used to start early but that has changed. Now you plant in November and just after 2 months the rains go. That’s changing of the world.” • “The rains are not starting in their usual month...Sometimes it will only rain twice and stops until December. So the seeds you planted will not grow well. We see that there is change in the distribution of the rain.”
  17. 17. 17 Perceptions of environmental change: Is it a problem? HH survey respondents asked to rank top 5 development problems faced by their community (from list of 10 potential problems) • Forest degradation: 41% of HHs ranked forest degradation among top five problems; Ranked as #1 problem by 11% of HHs. • Changes in rainfall and temperature: 50% (2229) of HHs ranked either changes in rainfall patterns or changes in temperature as #1 problem.
  18. 18. 18 Perceptions of environmental change: Is it a problem? HHs asked to rate severity of problems on the development of the community (on a scale from 1 to 10): • Changes in rainfall patterns or changes in temperature: Average rating was 8/10 • Deforestation or forest degradation: Average rating was 5.6/10
  19. 19. 19 Perceptions of environmental change: Is it a problem? • “It is a big problem because it has brought poverty, food is not enough, fruit trees are no longer so fruitful and the grass we use for our houses is not growing well.” • “It is a problem, it will be a problem because the next generation will not be able to find forest products nearby. There will be challenges in the villages. Instead of acquiring forest products they need they will be failing because of distances.”
  20. 20. 20 What’s causing environmental change? • Deforestation contributes to climate change: “(M): You said that you haven’t had good rains in the last three years, what do you think has caused that? (R):That time there were still a lot of trees in the forest but this time they are all cleared so you find that there is poor rainfall in this area now.” • Conflicting views: “Sometime back some people came and told us lies that the oxygen from the trees has finished so we need to stop cutting down the trees carelessly.”
  21. 21. 21 What’s causing environmental change? • Biblical explanations: “Like these days our thinking, the world has changed, we are in the end times now… Like us who read the bible, it says in that in the last days there will be drought, rain will not come in its season. Now when we see them like this, we say ah, this is what is written in the bible, it has been fulfilled.” • More conflicting views: “We can say it is God yes, but when we look carefully again, we hear that trees help to have rainfall, but with this modernization, modernization is too much, we can be seated here, your friend would just pass with a motor bike, it is just problems, because they leave the smoke behind.”
  22. 22. 22 What’s causing environmental change? More reasons: • Changes in population: “Tress have reduced…Trees have reduced due to Chewa migrants who are given settlements and fertile land for agriculture.” • Poverty and Hunger: “What makes us go into the forest is not our fault, it is because of poverty... Here there is nothing to do and there are no sources of income, that’s why people don’t follow the rules”
  23. 23. 23 Environmental change: What can be done? • “(M): You said rain pattern has reduced, what have done about it? (R1): We have done nothing. That’s God’s plan. (R2): Mumm… it’s God’s power. (R3): Mumm….its God’s plan. That’s a difficult question to answer (laughed).” • “There is nothing that can be done about this climate change. We will continue experiencing hard times.” • “It is the government that comes to stop us from doing these activities, but there is nothing they give us so, now like this, there is nothing to do and in the end we go in the forest to collect whatever we want”
  24. 24. 24 Participatory Mapping Excercises Women in Nyimba District
  25. 25. 25 Unique Findings: Participatory Mapping Data Spatialization of resource use: • Agricultural fields are “outside the village” • Charcoaling is done “in the mountains” • Overlaps in resource use without neighboring villages and “outsiders” “(M): Are there charcoal burners nearby? (R): Yes they are there, those from the mountains (M): Oh, but these are your mountains? (R): Yes, they burn charcoal, destroying our trees. (M): But it is your land? (R): It is our land but then it was sold. How can we protect it if the chief sold it?”
  26. 26. 26 Unique Findings: Participatory Mapping Data The research agenda, power relations and politics of control: • “(R): What is the purpose for asking us all these questions? (F): we are looking at how people live and use the forest (R): The research is about those living in the forest how they are destroying the forest? This is just about restricting charcoal burning, not that. But we have already drawn the map! If they stop us from burning charcoal how are we going to survive? The thing is you can not reveal to us the truth [laughter]. So now this forest is going to have rules.”
  27. 27. Solutions for Health, Housing and Land ● www.cloudburstgroup.com Conclusions & Lessons Learned
  28. 28. 28 Does the CFP IE design integrate culture? • Documents local understandings of causes of climate change (understandings that are not grounded in Western science) • Reveals tensions with migrants are also ethnic tensions, exacerbated by resource competition • Illuminates power relations controlling access to forests and forest resources • Highlights mistrust of outside agencies as doing working for those who wish to restrict access (local politics)
  29. 29. 29 Moving forward, Lessons Learned: Conceptual: • Acknowledge that more than basic economic logics frame behavior • Use baseline study findings to inform CFP design and implementation Methodological: • Method Triangulation • Training (Probing needs to improve, avoid leading questions) • Sample size versus quality of data, important implications for qualitative component • Mapping needs to document the entire debate and process of creating of the map
  30. 30. 30 Questions and Acknowledgements Thank you. • Questions? • ccaron@clarku.edu • stephanie.fenner@cloudburstgroup.com Acknowledgements: The Cloudburst Group wishes to acknowledge USAID’s funding of CFP and the CFP IE.

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