Economic growth and watershed management: Drivers of research and development innovations

Please fill the following information to request the publication in hardcopy. We will get in touch with you shortly.

All form fields are required.

The Municipality of Lantapan is wholly contained in the Manupali Watershed, Bukidnon province, in the southern Philippines. Lantapan’s economy, landscape, and political environment exemplify tensions between rapid population growth, economic changes, and environmental stress. Recent growth in agribusiness has spurred changes in land use and economic and social structures. This paper discusses the research innovations and lessons learnt from the World Agroforestry Centre’s (ICRAF) work in the Manupali watershed. Initially, ICRAF’s study focused on assembling the elements of realistic buffer zone management in Mount Kitanglad Range Natural Park on the northern border of Lantapan. Agroforestry intensification and community-endorsed social contract were important elements of effective buffer zone management. The Landcare approach, which centres on formation of landcare groups, was used to rapidly disseminate agro-forestry and conservation farming technologies, with apparent success. 13% of farming households adopted conservation technologies, covering 17% of cultivated land and 23% of critical areas of the watershed. However, the landcare groups began to backslide a year after it they started, due to availability of off-farm employment in the agri-business sector and the ambivalent support of the municipal government, which encouraged the proliferation of agri-business to boost the rural economy. To address this dramatic change in farmer decisions and local government priorities, ICRAF refocused its research activities on the multiple functions of trees, environmental services, and policy innovations. The lesson learned is that economic growth and watershed management goals are key drivers to Research and Development (R&D) innovations. Rooted in adaptive management, R&D organizations must learn and then adapt their programs to make them relevant to local needs. Salience, legitimacy and credibility are thus essential ingredients in R&D innovation.
Year: 2006
Language: English
Download: PDF