Forest ecosystem services derived by smallholder farmers in northwestern Madagascar: storm hazard mitigation and participation in forest management

Radhika Dave, Emma L. Tompkins, Kate Schreckenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Tropical dry deciduous forests provide numerous ecosystem services yet their contribution to agricultural production remains underexplored. We address this research gap by quantifying the broader suite of ecosystem services that support small holder farmers and identifying farmers' knowledge of storm hazard reduction benefits provided by forest fragments in Madagascar. We survey 240 households and interview eight key informants to identify household and community responses in two communities with contrasting forest cover trajectories. Using multivariate statistics, results show a heavy dependence on forests for food and raw materials and a majority of the respondents holding a positive view of hazard mitigation services provided by forest fragments. Education levels, earning an income from forest based tourism and honey production are the only predictors of participation in forest management. Positive view of the hazard reduction benefits derived from forests could be due to external influences or personal observations, and together with barriers to participation in forest management need to be further investigated to better link forest management to reduced hazards risks. These findings are significant for forest management policy, as local knowledge and rationale for decisions are instrumental in the success of decentralized forest management and maintenance of vital forest benefits to farmers.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalFOREST POLICY AND ECONOMICS
Early online date18 Sept 2016
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Sept 2016

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