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Research to manage the Environment for Development

Recent publications


Effects of Wildlife Resources on Community Welfare: Income, Poverty and Inequality

This paper demonstrates the importance of wildlife in the portfolio of environmental income in the livelihoods of poor rural communities living adjacent to a national park. The results show that wealthier households consume more wildlife products in total than do relatively poor households. However, poorer households derive greater proportional benefit than wealthier households from the consumption of wildlife resources. Excluding wildlife understates the relative contribution of environmental resources while at the same time overstating the relative contribution of farm and wage income.


Gender Differences in Climate Change Risk, Food Security, and Adaptation: A Study of Rural Households’ Reliance on Agriculture and Natural Resources to Sustain Livelihoods

Climate and weather variability in sub-Saharan Africa disproportionately leave female-headed households food insecure. However, the extent and reasons for these gender differences are, thus far, not well understood. This study examines gender-food-climate connections using longitudinal data from rural households in north-eastern South Africa. Results confirm gender distinctions in that male-headed households are more food secure. Importantly, however, female-headed households are not a homogenous group.


Decentralization, Market Integration, and Efficiency-Equity Trade-Offs: Evidence from Joint Forest Management in Ethiopian Villages

Extant literature on Joint Forest Management (JFM) impact evaluation has concluded that it generally does not provide sufficient incentives to justify the costs that forest use restrictions impose on local people. However, there is a dearth of evidence concerning whether alternative JFM intervention with improved market linkages for non-timber forest products has similar implications. In this study, we evaluated the income and distributive effects of a JFM program in Ethiopia in which additional support for improved market linkages of non-timber forest products was provided.


Exploring the Odds for Actual and Desired Adoption of Solar Energy in Kenya

Although Kenya enjoys a high and widespread daily solar insolation, and despite enactment of policies to promote adoption of renewable energy technologies, not many households have picked up solar technologies. The objective of this study is to find out the incidence and predictors of actual up-take of solar technology as well as households’ desire to switch to solar in light of their perception of its cost advantage.


Water and Sanitation Service Delivery, Pricing, and the Poor: An Empirical Estimate of Subsidy Incidence in Nairobi, Kenya

The increasing block tariff (IBT) is among the most widely used tariffs by water utilities, particularly in developing countries. This is in part due to the perception that the IBT can effectively target subsidies to low-income households. Combining data on households’ socioeconomic status and metered water use, this paper examines the distributional incidence of subsidies delivered through the water tariff in Nairobi, Kenya.


Marine Protected Areas in Artisanal Fisheries: A Spatial Bio-economic Model Based on Observations in Costa Rica and Tanzania

In many lower-income countries, the establishment of marine protected areas (MPAs) involves significant opportunity costs for artisanal fishers, reflected in changes in how they allocate their labor in response to the MPA. The resource economics literature rarely addresses such labor allocation decisions of artisanal fishers and how, in turn, these contribute to the impact of MPAs on fish stocks, yield, and income.


Marine Protected Areas: Lessons from Costa Rica and Tanzania

Both Tanzania’s and Costa Rica’s beaches provide important nesting sites for endangered sea turtles. Poaching of eggs by local people for food or for sale presents a major threat to these species, as do other predators. This harvesting of eggs in MPAs, and throughout Costa Rica, remains illegal, but enforcement on long beaches proves difficult. Both countries have active organizations that attempt to reduce this poaching, sometimes involving moving nests.


Will a Driving Restriction Policy Reduce Car Trips? A Case Study of Beijing, China Suggests That Driving Restrictions Are Not Too Effective

A driving restriction policy is a politically acceptable policy tool to address traffic congestion and air pollution in some countries and cities, but evidence from Beijing suggests that it is not as effective as hoped. This type of policy, called a command-and-control measure, is more acceptable than a market-based pricing instrument, because it states a rule that applies to everyone, rather than imposing a tax or fee that might be felt more heavily by poorer people.