Participatory monitoring and evaluation to aid investment in natural resource manager capacity at a range of scales.

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
Environ Monit Assess, 2012, 184 (12), pp. 7207 - 7220
Issue Date:
2012-12
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Natural resource (NR) outcomes at catchment scale rely heavily on the adoption of sustainable practices by private NR managers because they control the bulk of the NR assets. Public funds are invested in capacity building of private landholders to encourage adoption of more sustainable natural resource management (NRM) practices. However, prioritisation of NRM funding programmes has often been top-down with limited understanding of the multiple dimensions of landholder capacity leading to a failure to address the underlying capacity constraints of local communities. We argue that well-designed participatory monitoring and evaluation of landholder capacity can provide a mechanism to codify the tacit knowledge of landholders about the social-ecological systems in which they are embedded. This process enables tacit knowledge to be used by regional NRM bodies and government agencies to guide NRM investment in the Australian state of New South Wales. This paper details the collective actions to remove constraints to improved NRM that were identified by discrete groups of landholders through this process. The actions spanned geographical and temporal scales, and responsibility for them ranged across levels of governance.
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