FRAMEWORK FOR INTEGRATING INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE AND ECOLOGICAL METHODS FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF DESERTIFICATION CONVENTION, pp. 135-177
Authors: (Hassan G. Roba, Gufu Oba, The National Museums of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya, and others)
Abstract: This chapter describes a methodological framework for integrating indigenous knowledge and ecological methods for promoting local communities‘ participation in the implementation of the Convention on Combating Desertification (CCD) and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) at local community levels. We developed and tested the framework using herding communities in Northern Kenya. The methods for implementing the framework included semi-structured interviews and group discussions with key informants for generating information on livestock management, changes in vegetation indicators and historical changes in land use patterns. Other methods used included joint transect walks with knowledgeable herders to assess environmental change using ecological indicators (vegetation and soil) and herder anthropogenic indicators (i.e., landscape grazing potential and landscape grazing suitability), monitoring marked transects, using satellite images taken at different times, and herders‘ knowledge to evaluate long-term changes in vegetation cover around permanent settlements. Finally, a workshop was organized with herders and Environmental Management Committees (EMCs) in which they participated in informal discussions on issues addressed by the joint research project. We then synthesized the findings to evaluate the effectiveness of the framework for desertification assessment, monitoring and control. From the results we may conclude that local community participation in assessment and monitoring of environment change would contribute to the implementation of the CCD and the CBD. This chapter makes specific recommendations for applying the framework to achieve global goals for local actions at local community levels.