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2007-08-29 | story

Sustainable Land Management, Forest Policy, and Climate Change Adaptation in Ethiopia

This is an example of how EfD research can influence policies for Sustainable Land Management, Forest Policy, and Climate Change Adaptation in Ethiopia.

"Our policy outreach activities on Sustainable Land Management are already producing impacts. The implementing bodies are using our outputs to design appropriate scaling up mechanisms. The Forest Policy workshop that we organized has managed to create a platform for common understanding on the pros and cons of existing forest policies and design of mechanisms to increase forest cover in the country. The Climate Change workshop has sensitized the policy makers on the potential impacts of climate change and appropriate adaptation mechanisms."

                                                                       Dr Mahmud Yesuf, coordinator of EfD Ethiopia

Poverty and land degradation are major problems in Ethiopia. A key challenge is to go from a general awareness of the importance of natural resource management for poverty reduction to a situation where this awareness is mainstreamed into domestic and international policies that actually address the environmental problems while improving the situation for the poor. The Ethiopian government is addressing the problems of poverty and land degradation through its Plan for Accelerated and Sustained Development to End Poverty (PASDEP). Two important components of the government’s strategy for addressing these problems are land certification and watershed management programs. The Ethiopian governments together with a group of donors are launching a large and new program to promote sustainable land management and poverty reduction through investments in watershed management and land certification in at least 40 watersheds in Ethiopia: Country Partnership Program of Sustainable Land Management in Ethiopia (CPPSLM).

The EfD Ethiopia/Environmental Economics Policy Forum for Ethiopia (EEPFE) has been playing an active role and produced important background works for this initiative. We have been involved in continuous dialogue with various stakeholders of the program and organized three international workshops on this issue in the last three years. EEPFE is now serving as a national platform for the knowledge component of this program and we are part of the national steering committee. The EfD Ethiopia/EEPFE has also organized one national and one international workshop on climate change and adaptation in Ethiopia, and one international workshop on forest cover and forest policy in Ethiopia.

Three of our research projects are directly linked to these policy outreach activities: Land management technology adoption: production risk, risk aversion and crop productivity; Common property forest management and private tree growing in the Ethiopian highlands; Land registration and certification in Ethiopia.

The major outlets of our research outputs are seminars, workshops and policy briefs. The background analytical works on CPPSLM are also published by the World Bank and distributed to a wider audience of different stakeholders. Some of the outputs are also published in scientific journals.

Researchers involved: EfD Ethiopia/EEPFE at Ethiopian Development Research Institute and Addis Ababa University: Dr Mahmud Yesuf, Dr Alemu Mekonnen, Professor Randall Bluffstone, Dr Tekie Alemu; World Bank: Dr Klaus Deininger, Daniel Ali; EfD Sweden/University of Gothenburg: Associate Professor Gunnar Köhlin, Dr Menale Kassie.