Better Policy and Management Options for Pastoral Lands: Assessing trade-offs between poverty alleviation and wildlife conservation

People, wildlife and livestock have intermingled in East African savannas for millennia. This intermingling has declined as conservation policy excluded people and livestock from parks, and growing human populations and expanding agriculture excluded wildlife and pastoral use. Thus, in many parts of the region, wildlife populations in the region have declined by nearly half, livestock populations have remained stagnant while human populations have grown and millions of pastoralists have no choice but to diversify their livelihoods beyond livestock.

What ‘research-for–action’ issues are we tackling?

Our research and facilitation team focuses on the inter-linked issues of land-use change, wildlife conservation, pastoral livelihoods, and trade-offs, by linking knowledge with action, to address priority issues articulated by communities, policy makers and other partners in the region.

What do we aim to accomplish?

The project focuses on sustainable development of pastoral landscapes, improving the livelihoods of agro-pastoralists and also protecting the diversity of wildlife species and savanna landscapes .

Where do we work?

The initial sites are in Maasailand of Kenya and Tanzania and include the pastoral lands surrounding protected areas in the Mara/Transmara and Kitengela in Kenya, Amboseli/Longido in Kenya and Tanzania, and Tarangire/Simanjiro in Tanzania. The four sites represent contrasts in land tenure, national policies, and degree of land use intensification.

Who makes the work happen?

We have brought together a highly collaborative‘research-for- action’ team of community members, land managers, policy makers and researchers.

In the Maa language, “Reto-o-Reto” means “I help you, you help me”.

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