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Research to manage the Environment for Development

Recent publications


Climate change impacts and adaptation among smallholder farmers in Central America

Smallholder farmers are one of the most vulnerable groups to climate change, yet efforts to support farmer adaptation are hindered by the lack of information on how they are experiencing and responding to climate change. More information is needed on how different types of smallholder farmers vary in their perceptions and responses to climate change, and how to tailor adaptation programs to different smallholder farmer contexts.


    Do Safety Net Transfers Improve Diets and Reduce Undernutrition? Evidence from Rural Ethiopia

    This paper we examine the impact of the Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) on household dietary diversity and child nutrition using both waves of the Ethiopian Socioeconomic Survey. It uses various methodologies. Results indicate consistently that PSNP has not had the desired effect on household dietary diversity or child nutrition regardless of model specification or methodology, suggesting that perhaps the transfers need to be paired with additional interventions such as information about nutrition.


    Context Matters: Exploring the Cost-effectiveness of Fixed Payments and Procurement Auctions for PES

    Successfully implemented payment for ecosystem services (PES) programs can provide both conservation of nature and financial support to rural communities. In this paper, we explore how PES programs can be designed so as to maximize the amount of additional ecosystem services provided for a given budget. We also provide a brief summary of the use of auction mechanisms in real world PES programs.


    A Contingent Valuation Approach to Estimating Regulatory Costs: Mexico's Day Without Driving Program

    Little is known about the cost of environmental regulations that target households instead of firms, partly because of significant methodological and data challenges. We use the contingent valuation method to measure the costs of Mexico City’s Day without Driving program, which seeks to stem pollution and traffic congestion by prohibiting vehicles from being driven one day each week. To our knowledge, ours is the first study to focus directly on using stated preference methods to isolate and estimate the private costs of an existing environmental regulation.


    Lessons from Applying Market-Based Incentives in Watershed Management

    Watershed management is a complex activity with constraints on funding and human resources in many parts of the world, and there is a need for global effort to identify strategies that can work. To complement regulatory approaches, attention is now also being given to market-based incentives because of their potential cost-effectiveness. This study seeks to provide impetus to the use of the most successful market-based incentives to promote sustainable watershed practices through strengthening and increasing direct participation


    Managing and Defending the Commons: Experimental Evidence from TURFs in Chile

    This work presents the results of framed field experiments designed to study the joint problem of managing harvests from a common pool resource and protecting the resource from poaching. The experiments were conducted both in the field with TURF users and in the lab with university students. Our study has two objectives. First, we designed our experiments to study the effects of poaching on the ability of common pool resource users to coordinate their harvests when encroachment by outsiders is unrestricted and when the government provides weak enforcement.


    Cost of Power Outages for Manufacturing Firms in Ethiopia: A Stated Preference Study

    Having a reliable supply of electricity is essential for the operation of any firm. In most developing countries, however, electricity supply is highly unreliable. In this study, we estimate the cost of power outages for micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, using a stated preference survey. We find that the willingness to pay, and thus the cost of power outages, is substantial. The estimated willingness to pay for a reduction of one power outage corresponds to a tariff increase of 16 percent.


    Fishing community preferences and willingness to pay for alternative developments of ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) for Lake Naivasha, Kenya

    Ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) is an important complement to existing fisheries management approaches to maintain ecosystem health and function; to translate goals and aspirations for sustainability into operational objectives, the preferences of the fishing communities should be considered for successful implementation of EBFM. This study analysed the preferences of the fishing community for alternative EBFM developments for Lake Naivasha, Kenya, and estimated the willingness to pay, using a choice experiment approach.