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Community-based Natural Resource Management in Southern Africa

by Portal Web Editor last modified Jun 10, 2015 08:23 PM

Community-based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) has a long history of success in many countries in southern Africa. Starting in the late 1980s, the CAMPFIRE program in Zimbabwe generated significant benefits for local communities via wildlife management. The USAID-funded LIFE project in Namibia facilitated the creation of numerous community conservancies that have also reaped the rewards of wildlife management, and paved the way for joint ventures with private sector tourism operators.

Image of Elephant

Similar CBNRM programs have also had positive impacts on local livelihoods in Zambia, Malawi, and Botswana and practitioners are optimistic about new programs in Mozambique and Tanzania. Nonetheless, many feel that the full potential of CBNRM has yet to be realized or recognized.

Positive contributions to national development priorities such as poverty alleviation, adaptation to climate change, and economic growth must be documented and communicated to decision makers. This should, in turn, ease much needed scaling up of CBNRM initiatives.

The purpose of this community of practice is to facilitate information sharing and discussion about CBNRM among practitioners in the southern Africa region. Of particular interest are initiatives that mainstream CBNRM at a national policy level and discussions focused on how to scale up the impact of CBNRM. Exchanges on new, innovative CBNRM issues are also sought. However, all views and information related to CBNRM in southern Africa are more than welcome. Pertinent discussions can be synthesized into occasional papers that are shared with decision makers and disseminated widely using a variety of media.

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