The Four LiveDiverse Phases

LiveDiverse Phase 1a – Review of existing data and construction of the knowledge data- base (Work Package (WP) 2)

PHASE 1 in LiveDiverse draws its inspiration from the proposed methodology by the Global Water Partnership, adapted to the needs of biodiversity and livelihoods. A baseline assessment of key biodiversity resources and development issues will provide a good basis for identifying and prioritising biodiversity and livelihoods challenges and objectives. The Global Environment Facility strongly recommends to start with a basin-by-basin analysis of competing uses of resources and the land-use decisions influencing them. This will also be the point-of-entry in LiveDiverse, as we will analyse each riparian case area and the existing knowledge of conditions in those areas. According to the Global Water Partnership, there are a number of aspects related to the creation of a knowledge base (GWP, 2004) that are relevant and useful for LiveDiverse, a) collecting and combining knowledge needed to identify key challenges, b) the determination of issues where change is needed, c) the creation of a baseline database containing key factors for monitoring progress and impacts, and d) the development of systems to feed knowledge into the decision-making process on an continuous basis. A major task for Phase 1 of LiveDiverse is therefore the creation of a multidisciplinary knowledge base. During this the case partners will play a vital and central role, as it is their local access to information and knowledge that needs to be combined with input from other research projects and international and national publications. The following tasks will be performed:

1. The collection and documentation of the current state of knowledge, data and information, through analysis of scientific publications, project reports, and information from the local case partners in Vietnam, India, South Africa and Costa Rica. The data gathered will include information regarding water quality, user demands, land-use, user conflicts, political structures, laws and policies (WP2).

2. The identification and mapping of stakeholders and their insights into the problems within the case areas (WP3)

3. The documentation of the history of the case areas and the human activities relating to biodiversity and livelihoods taking into account the perspectives of environment, social, economical and policy aspects and stakeholder groups (WP 2 and 3).

4. A review of the international literature concerning biodiversity and livelihoods in other parts of the world.

5. The compilation of the information in a database accessible by all LiveDiverse partners, that can also be made available to non-project partners when feasible. 6. An analysis of the existing data and the identification of knowledge gaps.

LiveDiverse Phase 1b –Methods to improve understanding of public beliefs, perceptions, attitudes and preferences (WP4)

Studies of environmental beliefs, values and attitudes are complicated by the ambiguous meanings of both the objects of study, and of the instruments used. The environment is, after all, technically speaking, anything that exists outside of the self (Heberlein 1981), and, conceptually, the environment can range from the very local to the global. Although the term has recently come to be mainly associated with the bio-physical, or “natural” world, it has also been used to apply to a multitude of varying spatial and psychological surroundings and circumstances. The study of the urban or “living environment”, for example, has a long tradition in European social science, where it is used to describe the physical and social territory occupied by an individual or group. These two concepts, that of the “natural environment”, and that of the “living environment”, complement each other, but are not always defined in studies of environmental beliefs and attitudes. The differences are, however, significant for an understanding public belief systems concerning biodiversity. There is a substantial disparity between concern grounded in apprehension for the immediate living space, and in worry caused by perceived degradation of the planet as a whole. One way of examining environmental values and beliefs is by using the notion of “social paradigm”. According to Thomas Kuhn, “paradigm” is a term that can be used to describe a group’s way of looking at the world, its “entire constellation of beliefs, values, techniques, and so on” (Kuhn 1970). Paradigmatic change involves the fundamental reorganisation of an individual or groups basic ontological beliefs. Although the concept was originally formulated to describe changes in scientific “world views”, the idea of paradigm and paradigmatic change has also been applied to societal perceptions of the relationship between society and the physical environment. Used in this way, “paradigms are not only beliefs about what the world is like and guides to action; they also serve the purpose of legitimising or justifying courses of action” (Cotgrove 1981; Cotgrove 1982). The orthodox, Western anthropocentric view of the human-nature relationship is one in which humans are seen as above and exempt from the rest of nature, in which there is a belief in economic growth and material abundance, and a faith in science and technology. This has been termed the Dominant Social Paradigm (DSP) (Pirages 1974; Catton 1978; Catton 1980; Dunlap 1984). This socio-cultural DSP is not necessarily held by all members of a community, it is instead the “collection of norms, beliefs, values, habits, and so on that form the world viewmost commonly held within a culture” ((Pirages 1974) or held by dominant groups in the society. It is transmitted from generation to generation by institutions, socialisation and through learning. While considerable research has been conducted into examining Western paradigms, and significant work has been conducted by anthropologist into human-nature relationships in some developing countries, the combination of perceptions of ecological biodiversity, socio-economic vulnerability and cultural-spiritual vulnerability that will be used in the LiveDiverse project is innovative. After the upsurge of environmental awareness in 1970, social scientists increased their efforts to examine the ecological attitudes connected with this interest in the human-nature relationship. Early attempts to construct scales aimed at measuring ecological attitudes (Maloney 1975) used a large number of questions in their scales, and often focused on specific aspects of environmental issues. The construction of the “New Environmental Paradigm Scale” (Dunlap 1978) represents an important although now somewhat dated step forward, in that it attempts to explore “primitive beliefs” (Rokeach 1973; Gray 1985)). The earth is seen as being delicate and limited in resources, the possibilities for human economic growth are restricted, and human efforts to dominate the physical environment are believed to lead to serious environmental problems. While the NEP may provide a useful point of departure for the construction of the LiveDiverse Biodiversity and Livelihoods Scale (BLS), it cannot be used as it stands as it does not sufficiently take into account the necessity to achieve livelihoods. Building on earlier work of Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck (Kluckholm and Strodtbeck 1961) and Ashmore and Tumia (Ashmore and Tumia 1975), Gray stresses the importance of primitive beliefs such as those described by the NEP in his theoretical model of the “Ecological Attitude Domain”. The first of these primitive beliefs is that humankind is above and apart from nature, and that nature should be utilised by humans. The second is that “progress and growth are natural, inevitable, and good” (Gray 1985). Primitive beliefs are “thought to be some of our most deeply internalised and most determinative of behaviours” (Ibid.: 32). According to Gray, these primitive beliefs, together with general environmental concern, with beliefs about the costs and benefits of individual or societal actions on the environment, and with beliefs about individual responsibility and rights, are “primary beliefs”. These can be placed at the base of an environmental belief system, and lead in turn to derived beliefs concerning conservation, pollution, and population, and to general environmental attitudes. The importance of primary beliefs in a person’s belief hierarchy has also been stressed by Fishbein and Ajzen (Fishbein and Ajzen 1975), and, according to Heberlein (1981a: 248) a series of beliefs, which can be both cognitive or evaluative, can combine to create an attitude. Beliefs are also important in the formation of a value, which is an “enduring belief that a specific mode of conduct or end-state of existence is personally or socially preferable” (Rokeach, 1973: 5). Attitudes and values differ in that “an attitude refers to an organisation of several beliefs around a specific object or situation. A value, on the other hand, refers to a single belief of a very specific kind” (Rokeach, 1973: 18). However, Gray’s (1985: 46) taxonomy places environmental concern at the base of his “Ecological Attitude System” (EAS) and treats it as a primary belief. While general environmental concern is undoubtedly an important aspect of an environmental belief system, it may be expedient to treat such concern as a derived belief, and to examine its sources. Another interesting research tradition that will be incorporated into the LiveDiverse work into perceptions and beliefs is Mary Douglas’ work on schemas, which has later been developed by herself and others (e.g. (Douglas 1982; Thompson, Ellis et al. 1990; Douglas 1992) and proponents of “cultural theory” have proposed that schemas can constitute coherent systems that include both societal and environmental values and beliefs. Using these and other classic studies as a starting point, and building upon them with the results of more recent studies, LiveDiverse will construct and use the Biodiversity and Livelihoods Scale (BLS), which is expected to consist of 12 – 15 variables in the form of perceptions, beliefs etc. concerning biodiversity and the connection with livelihoods. The results of the surveys using this scale will be analysed using SPSS (Statistics Package for the Social Sciences) which enable statistical correlations and factors analysis to be performed.

Ashmore, R. D. and M. L. A. Tumia (1975). A Prelimnary Social Psychological Analysis of How Americans Orient Toward the Physical Environment. Annual Fall Psychology Symposium, Westminster College, New Wilmington, Pa.

Catton, W. R. J. R. E. D. (1978). “Environmental Sociology: A New Paradigm.” The American Sociologist, 1978, 13, pp 41-49. Catton, W. R. R. E. D. (1980). “A New Ecological Paradigm for Post-Exuberant Sociology.” American Behavioral Scientist, Vol. 24, No. 1, 1980, pp. 15-47.

Cotgrove, S. (1982). Catastrophe or Cornucopia, The Environment, Politics and the Future, John Wiley & Sons.

Cotgrove, S. A. D. (1981). “Environmentalism, values, and social change.” British Journal of Sociology, vol 32 no 1, pp 92-110.

Douglas, M., Ed. (1982). Essays in the Sociology of Perception, Routledge & Kegan Paul.

Douglas, M. (1992). Risk and Blame. London, Routledge. Dunlap, R. E. K. D. V. L. (1978). “The “New Environmental Paradigm”.” Journal of Environmental Education, 1978, 9, pp 10-19.

Dunlap, R. E. K. D. V. L. (1984). “Commitment to the Dominant Social Paradigm and Concern for Environmental Quality.” Social Science Quarterly, 1984, 66, pp 1013-1027.

Fishbein, M. and I. Ajzen (1975). Belief, Attitude, Intentions and Behavior: An Introduction to Theory and Research. Reading, Mass., Addison-Wesley. Gray, D. B. (1985). Ecological Beliefs and Behaviors: Assessment and Change. Westport, Greenwood Press.

Heberlein, T. A. (1981). “Environmental Attitudes.” Zeitschrift Fuer Umweltpolitik 4: 241-270.

Kluckholm, F. R. and F. L. Strodtbeck (1961). Variations in Value Orientations. Evanston, Ill, Row, Peterson.

Kuhn, T. S. (1970). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago, The Unversity of Chicago Press.

Maloney, M. P. M. P. W. G. N. B. (1975). “A revised scale for the measurement of ecological attitudes and knowledge.” American Psychologist, July 1975, pp 787-790.

Pirages, D. C. P. R. E. (1974). Ark 2: Social Response to Environmental Imperitives, W.H. Freeman & Co.

Rokeach, M. (1973). The Nature of Human Values. New York, The Free Press.

Thompson, M., R. Ellis, et al. (1990). Cultural Theory. Boulder, SF, Westview Press.

LiveDiverse Phase 1c – Methods to better understand and improve public participation (WP3)

Although shifts in environmental management in various countries and parts of the world may be very different in character, they do however seem to have one thing in common, which is that the scope and ambitions of environmental management has increased. This implies that management is now concerned with more issues, and affects more people than it did in the past (i.e. management involves not just farmers but also industrial interests, nature conservationists and ordinary citizens, as well as the perceived rights of future generations, human and non-human). Environmental management has increasingly become concerned with risks and benefits, and has therefore moved more and more into the realms of politics, where the traditional definition of what politics is can be formulated as ‘the authoritative assignment of values’ (or who gets what, when, and how). In the course of their profession, environmental managers have in fact always engaged in the assignment of values and their actions have therefore always been to a large extent political. However, whereas environmental management has traditionally been considered a predominantly technical field in many countries, the increase in scope, and new demands on management, make the political character of the field very clear, even to the most superficial observer and even in places where this might least be expected. These developments and the move in environmental management from the primarily technical to a combination of technical and political-social spheres has lead to an increased interest in public and stakeholder participation in environmental issues.

As a result, the relevance and saliency of public participation in environmental management has increased in the past decades. There are many reasons for this development. Some of these are on what one may call the ‘demand side’ of public participation: because there is more societal attention to environmental goods such as clean water and land- and waterscapes, the desire to participate on the part of the public has increased. Similarly, environmental management is increasingly touching upon politically sensitive issues such as land use planning, flood control, irrigation, biodiversity and aesthetic uses of water. On the ‘supply side’, we may observe an increase in the number of institutional venues for public participation. This interest in public opinion was not however simply based on a perceived means of defence; environmental managers also began to realize that they could learn from members of the public. The usefulness of contributions from the public to environmental management processes may vary, yet even without the benefits of a technical or natural science education, citizens often posses ‘local knowledge’ or ‘ordinary knowledge’ related to their being on their land that managers need to incorporate in order to make accurate decisions. Faced with an increasingly complicated and uncertain environment, there is also a realization of the need to learn to work together in order to successfully manage environmental issues (Ridder, Mostert et al. 2005). Yet while the issue of public participation in environmental management has come to be seen as more and more important, systematic studies of different types of participation, and of the outcomes of participation, seem to be few. In LiveDiverse we will therefore first present an overview of the main issues that need to be addressed, as well as a discussion of the underlying ideas that should be taken into account when planning and implementing participatory methods in environmental management. We will present an analysis of different forms of participation and their role in representative and participatory democratic systems; we will then continue with descriptions of a number of different participatory techniques. Finally we will identify the most suitable participatory methods for our case areas and implement them in the areas management.

Ridder, D., E. Mostert, et al., Eds. (2005). Learning together to manage together. Improving participation in water management. Osnabrück, University of Osnabrück.

LiveDiverse Phase 2 – Measuring biodiversity and livelihoods vulnerability

The LiveDiverse methodology necessitates ways of measuring vulnerability in each of the three forms included in the project. As Souri points out, the approach proposed here has considerable potential but also faces significant methodological problems. What is needed is a way to construct sets of indicators for widely varying phenomena. A comprehensive attempt at integration was developed by Downing et al (2006, p.3) in which they identify six attributes of vulnerability that capture virtually all the main components of an integrated approach:

1. Vulnerability is the differential exposure to stresses experienced or anticipated by different exposure units.

2. Vulnerability is a dynamic process, changing on a variety of inter-linked time scales.

3. Social vulnerability is rooted in the actions and multiple attributes of human actors

4. Social networks drive and bound vulnerability in the social, economic, political and environmental interactions

5. Vulnerability is constructed simultaneously on more than one scale

6. Multiple stresses are inherent in integrating vulnerability of peoples, places, and systems.

Downing, T.E., Aerts, J. Soussan, J.Barthelemy, O., Bharwani, S., Ionescu, C. Hinkel, J. Klein R.J.T., Mata, L., Moss, S., Purkey, D. and Ziervogel, G. 2006: Integrating Social Vulnerability into water management. SEI Working Paper and NeWater Working Paper No. 4. Oxford: Stockholm Environment Institute.

Ecological vulnerability

Sustainable development involves the integration of environmental, economic and social aspects (Brundtland, 1987). Developing tools to measure the vulnerability of these three components has become increasingly important to promote sustainability. The ecological vulnerability can be defined as the potential of the natural system to respond adversely to events, which may consist of natural hazards or anthropogenic pressures. Ecological vulnerability is the local result of a synergy of natural and human factors and should be taken into consideration in the management plans. However, environmental management is often focused on the environmental effects of individual development projects, while a better knowledge is needed on the cumulative effects of multiple management actions over different spatial and temporal scales (Jackson et al., 2006). The use of rapid and effective indicators that can synthesise these various environmental aspects and that can be integrated with the economical and social indicators may contribute to improve the environmental sustainable management. The Environmental Vulnerability Index (EVI), developed by the South Pacific Applied Geoscience Commission (SOPAC), the United Nations environment Programme (UNEP) and their partner (, Kali et al., 2003), provides a rapid and standardised method to measure the environmental vulnerability of a country. EVI is a single indicator that has been designed to reflect the extent to which the natural environment of a country is prone to damage and degradation. It was conceived to be easily integrated with economical and social indexes. EVI summarises in a unique figure a wide range of conditions and processes, but it is built on the bases of 50 environmental vulnerability indicators, related to weather & climate, geology, geography, resources & services and human population. For this reason EVI provides an overall estimation of vulnerability together with the possibility to identify specific problems through the 50 indicators. Moreover, it provides a series of policy-relevant thematic sub-indices. In the EVI, three aspects of vulnerability are included: hazards, resistance and acquired vulnerability (damage). Among the 50 indicators, 32 are indicators of hazards, 8 of resistance and 10 measure damage. The EVI scale is standardised allowing the comparison of different indicators within the same country but also among various countries. This aspect is particularly relevant, as there has been significant recent attention to implement measures of vulnerability that are comparable across time and location (Adger, 2006). EVI allows an estimation of the level of risk in the present status, informing at the same time on how the environment will be likely to cope with future events, as theenvironment vulnerability is considered depending also on the results of past natural and anthropogenic hazards (acquired vulnerability). Concerning the spatial scale, EVI was designed for use at the national scale. However, also other geographic scales could be relevant for the assessment of vulnerability. Recently, there have been innovations in methods to capture the spatial distribution of individual variables of concern (Adger, 2006; Luers, 2005) and in evaluating the vulnerability based on spatial extrapolation (Jackson et al., 2006). These studies aim to highlight within a region the priority areas, and often rely on techniques of overlay between spatial models and data to reveal geographic coincidence (Abbit et al., 2000). These approaches can be combined with the EVI concept to develop spatial environmental vulnerability indicators.


Abbitt, R.J.F., Scott, J.M. and Wilcove, D.S., 2000. The geography of vulnerability: incorporating species geography and human development patterns into conservation planning. Biol. Conserv.. Vol.96, pp.169-175.

Adger, W.N., 2006. Vulnerability. Global Environmental Change. Vol.16(3), pp.268-281.
Brundtland 1987, World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED). Our common future. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 46pp.
Jackson, L.E., Bird, S.L., Matheny, R.W., O’Neill, R.V., White,D., Boesch, K.C., Koviach, J.L., 2004. A regional approach to projecting land-use change and resulting ecological vulnerability. Environmental modelling and assessment. Vol.94, pp.231-248.
Kaly, U., Prat, C., Mitchell, J., Howorth, R., 2003. The demonstration environmental vulnerability index (EVI). SOPAC Technical Report. Vol.356, 136pp.
Luers, A.L., 2005. The surface of vulnerability: an analytical framework for examining environmental change. Global Environmental Change 15, pp.214–223.

Socio-economic vulnerability
There is an increasing amount of literature on the concept of socio-economic vulnerability to environmental risk. Generally, vulnerability is seen as the outcome of a mixture of environmental, social, cultural, institutional and economic structures and processes related to poverty and (health) risk, not a phenomenon related to environmental risk only. Definitions of vulnerability focus on risk and risk exposure on the one hand and coping and adaptation mechanisms on the other (e.g. Pelling, 1999). Besides risk exposure, adaptive capacity is seen as a key component of the concept of vulnerability (e.g. Adger, 2000; IPPC, 2001). Empirical studies focus more and more on variations in both exposure to natural hazards and people’s capacity to cope with these hazards (Few, 2003, p.48). Adaptive capacity is considered a process of adaptation (over time) to structural and/or incidental sources of environmental stress (e.g. Nishat et al., 2000), consisting of distinct social, economic, technological, institutional and cultural adaptive mechanisms (e.g. Cardona, 2001). Social mechanisms refer, for example, to social networks of relatives and neighbours, economic mechanisms to livelihood diversification or savings, technological mechanisms to technical measures to reduce environmental risk, institutional mechanisms to (in)formal political-organizational structures and associated collective action to ameliorate vulnerability (including for instance access to productive assets or community micro-credit systems) and cultural mechanisms to perceptions and beliefs about the nature and avoidance of environmental risks. In LiveDiverse we will pay attention to the whole range of adaptive mechanisms and explicitly focus on the influence of poverty on socio-economic vulnerability and adaptive capacity. Poverty is both an important determinant of (endogenous) environmental risk – and hence (in)directly of socio-economic vulnerability – and an important constraint of adaptive capacity. Poorer people tend to be more (often) exposed to environmental risk than wealthy people. The latter are furthermore able to take protective measures or are able to avoid certain environmental (health) risks, i.e. the endogenous component of risk. Besides, often it are the poor that depend most for their livelihood on the environmental resource base (Scherr 2000) and when the environmental resource base is degraded the asset base of poor households deteriorates as well. Whether individual households and communities have the adaptive capacity to reduce socio-economic vulnerability to environmental change generally depends on the fit between the levels at which the problem is experienced and caused. For instance, local communities cannot influence the rate of climate change worldwide but they can sometimes reduce the deforestation rate locally. Two factors are important in determining whether individual households and communities have the adaptive capacity to respond to environmental change. First, they need to be able to cooperate in sustainable resource management or to organize themselves against the environmental threat in groups or networks. Whether households are likely to cooperate depends for instance on the costs and benefits of cooperation and the extent to which free rider behaviour can be effectively controlled (Ostrom 1990) but also on higher order variables such as the level of trust in the network and the importance of reputation in societies. If some households or groups of stakeholders can easily free ride on the efforts of others, a sustainable solution is less likely to be found. Our analysis will focus on the relative importance of social capital, informal institutions, and the wider socio-economic environment in which local resource management takes place. The wider socio- economic environment determines the costs and benefits of cooperation and the extent to which the costs and benefits are equally shared (Agarwal 2001). (In)formal institutions are required to monitor free rider behaviour and punish defectors effectively (Baland and Platteau 1996). While the exact definition of social capital is subject to debate, most analysts treat it as a characteristic of communities, and describe it in terms of trust, norms and networks that enable collective action (e.g. Putnam 1993, Fukuyama 1995, Woolcock and Narayan 2000, Bowles and Gintis 2002). Most empirical work – be it based on cross section analysis or case studies – suggests a positive correlation between social capital, the quality of governance and economic growth (e.g. Putnam 1993, Knack and Keefer 1997, Knack 2002). Second, there needs to be a supportive institutional environment to facilitate cooperation but to also coordinate natural resource management, specifically at the national and international levels. Here we can connect to the emerging literatures on adaptive governance and adaptive co-management (Folke et al., 2005; Olsson, 2006; Huitema et al., 2007) and the literature on the institutional dimensions of global change (e.g. Young, 2002; Gupta and Huitema, forthcoming). Starting point of this literature is the contention that the relationship between ecological and social systems is so strong that many propose to study them collectively, as ‘social-ecological systems’. This has occurred in an economic context, which is increasingly globalized and interwoven (Young et al., 2006). Because of this social-ecological systems’ behaviour is so complex and unpredictable that rather than managing for an optimum condition, attention should be paid to the development and maintenance of managing capacity in the governance system, and the adaptive capacity of that system (Young et al., 2006, Folke et al. 2005; Olsson et al., 2006; Huitema et al., 2007). Some have argued that such a capacity will be provided by social networks (see for a discussion Janssen, 2006), others have more broadly illuminated institutional prescriptions for governance systems such as the willingness to experiment, the presence of high levels of public participation and collaboration (see eg. Lee, 1998; Imperial, 2002), and the presence of shadow networks, effective leadership, flexibility, and connectedness between various governance levels (Olsson et al., 2006). The work proposed here is innovative because it proposes to develop a multi-disciplinary framework to systematically inventorize the factors that influence socio-economic vulnerability and adaptive capacity at the various levels. In addition, the work will emphasize the interplay between the various levels, investigating for instance how the vulnerability of the individual is connected to (emergent) properties of the village, networks and the nation. In addition, the team will employ innovative methods of performing research. Notably, LiveDiverse will employ choice experiments, experimental games, extensive questionnaires at each level and stakeholder participation methods such as focus groups. The outputs of the project are intended to support policy innovation by highlighting effective strategies for socio-economic vulnerability reduction in the case study areas and providing a multi-disciplinary framework to analyze adaptive capacity and socio-economic vulnerability at multiple levels. LiveDiverse will engage in an intense consultation process with the case studies and tailor the expertise available in the project to the specific requirements in the case studies. In some cases, there may be a greater need for expertise on network building, whilst in others, there may be an interest in policy developments at the international level regarding biodiversity and how these pertain to socio-economic vulnerability and adaptive capacity. The LiveDiverse has a range of experts that can address issues at these distinct levels. Care will be taken that this expertise is used where most appropriate, and secondly there will be a constant effort through collective meetings and the requirement to produce certain deliverables to analyse the interaction between the various levels.

Pelling, M. (1999). The political ecology of flood hazard in urban Guyana. Geoforum 30: 249-261.
Adger, W.N. (2000). Institutional adaptation to environmental risk under the transition in Vietnam. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 90(4): 738–58.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2001). Climate change 2001: impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability. Summary for policymakers. A Report of Working Group II of the IPCC. Geneva: IPCC.
Few, R. (2003). Flooding, vulnerability and coping strategies: local responses to a global threat. Progress in Development Studies, 3(1): 43-58.
Nishat, A., Reazuddin, M., Amin, R. and Khan, A.R. (eds.) (2000). The 1998 flood: impact on environment of Dhaka city. Dhaka: Department of Environment and IUCN Bangladesh.
Berkhout, F.,
Hertin, J. and Gann, D.M. (2006) Learning to adapt: Organisational adaptation to climate change impacts.
Cardona, O. (2001). La necesidad de repensar de manera holistica los conceptos de vulnerabilidad y riesgo. Paper presented at International Conference on Vulnerability in Disaster Theory and Practice, Wageningen University, Netherlands, June 2001.
Scherr, S (2000). A downward spiral? Research evidence on the relationship between poverty and natural resource degradation. Food policy 25 (2000) p 479-498.
Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the commons: The evolution of institutions for collective action, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Agarwal, A. (2001). ‘Common property institutions and sustainable governance of resources’, World Development 29: 1649-1672.
Baland, J.M. and J.P Platteau (1996). Halting degradation of natural resources: Is there a role for rural communities?, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Putnam, R. (1993). Making democracy work: Civic traditions in modern Italy, Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Fukuyama, F. (1995). Trust: The social values and the creation of prosperity, New York: Free Press.
Woolcock, M. and D. Narayan (2000). “Social capital: Implications for development theory, research and policy”, The World Bank Research Observer 15(2): 225–249.
Bowles, S. and H. Gintis (2002). “Social capital and community governance”, Economic Journal 112: 419–436.
Knack, S. and P. Keefer (1997). “Does social capital have an economic payoff? A cross country investigation”, Quarterly Journal of Economics 112: 1251–1288.
Knack, S (2002). “Social capital and the quality of government: Evidence from the United States”, American Journal of Political Sciences 46(4): 772–785.

Cultural-spiritual vulnerability Though it is now increasingly recognized that cultural diversity and biodiversity are deeply linked, mainly because biodiversity hot spots are also locations occupied by diverse indigenous peoples who have had a living interaction with the biodiversity of their surroundings as part of their living, the first UNEP volume of biodiversity (Heywood 1995) rarely if at all took any account of cultural diversity and especially that of the indigenous people. The UNEP assisted volume on cultural diversity that appeared four years later (Posey 1999) bends the stick backward, a little too backward according to some reviewers (for example, see Westing 2000 and Foltz 2001). The clearest example of this connection that has been cited and studies the most is that of sacred groves and in India Madhav Gadgil has done pioneering work in this respect. (See for example Gadgil 1974 and Gadgil 1981) Though the relevance of cultural and spiritual diversity is often seen as restricted to indigenous and traditional people and attributed special vulnerability because of Western lack of understanding of the value of indigenous people’s concepts, there are now attempts to apply it in more general situations (Cocks 2006). Drawing on the fact that ecosystem fringes are often the richest sources of biodiversity Turner et al combine ecological and cultural edges to argue for a composite `living at the edges’ as a major source of resilience, that is coping with social and ecological vulnerability (Turner 2003). This provides an important analytical framework that however has elements that can be utilized for a general approach to resilience as coping mechanism for vulnerability. Culture is often taken as a non-material concept, but perhaps in respect of biodiversity, material culture and material practices are as if not more important. For one such study see (Hani 2005). There have been a number of conventions centred around indigenous people and their rights that have implicated cultural and spiritual vulnerability issues, but now there is more explicit recognition of the issue. The latest such convention is the Tokyo Convention 2005 that among other things calls for the implementation of UNESCO/IUCN Guidelines for the Conservation and Management of Sacred Natural Sites (See below). However, the field of study of vulnerability of cultural and spiritual biodiversity must be considered a fledgling field in so far as independent methodologies and their development are concerned. Most of the literature brings to bear on the problem the framework of their parent disciplines, including ethnography, ethnobotany, culture studies etc. There is a need for further interdisciplinary study of the interconnections between the cultural and spiritual practices landscape and biodiversity landscape before we can begin to talk about generalized methodologies and approaches. This will be a major task for the LiveDiverse project.

Heywood, V. H. (ed) 1995. The Global Biodiversity Assessment. United Nations Environment Programme. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Posey, D (ed.) (1999) Cultural and Spiritual Values of Biodiversity . London: Intermediate Technology Publications.
Arthur H Westing, Review of Cultural and Spiritual Values of Biodiversity, Environment; Nov 2000; 42, 9; Academic Research Library, pg. 39 Richard Foltz, Review of Darrell Addison Posey (ed), Cultural and Spiritual Values of Biodiversity, Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics; 2001; 14, 1; Academic Research Library, pg. 94
Michelle Cocks, Biocultural Diversity: Moving Beyond the Realm of ‘Indigenous’ and ‘Local’ People, Human Ecology, Vol. 34, No. 2, April 2006 Nancy J Turner; Iain J Davidson-Hunt and Michael O’Flaherty, Living on the Edge: Ecological and Cultural Edges as Sources of Diversity for Diversity for Social-Ecological Resilience, Human Ecology; Sep 2003; 31, 3;
Nizar Hani, Interdependance (sic) Culture – Biodiversity: Case Study On The Relationship Between Biological Diversity And Material Culture In Al_Chouf Cedar Biosphere Reserve – Final Report, Submitted to UNESCO Cairo, Cairo, Egypt, October 2005 Gadgil, Madhav and V. D. Vartak, Sacred groves of India – A plea for continued conservation, Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society, 72 (2), 1974. \Gadgil, Madhav and V. D. Vartak, Studies on Sacred Groves along the Western Ghats from Maharshtra and Goa: Role of Beliefs and Folklores, in Jain, S. K. (1981). Glimpses of Indian Ethnobotany. New Delhi: Oxford & IBH., pp. 272-278.

International Symposium “Conserving Cultural and Biological Diversity: The Role of Sacred Natural Sites and Cultural Landscapes”, Declaration on the Role of Sacred Natural Sites and Cultural Landscapes in the Conservation of Biological and Cultural Diversity, Tokyo, Japan, 30 May to 2 June 2005 available
last accessed 28 April 2007.

LiveDiverse Phase 3 – Mapping livelihood and diversity vulnerability through GIS (WP8) It has already been noted that integrated studies of vulnerability are quite rare in EU funded projects. LiveDiverse therefore represents a significant progress beyond the state-of-the-art. Not only will it combine three perspectives of vulnerability, but it will also develop a methodology for analyses of biodiversity and livelihoods, and provide a tool that can be used for formulating policy recommendations and for aiding in conflict reconciliation. The importance of the geographical aspects of biodiversity and sustainability problems, and of the spatial aspects of public beliefs, perceptions, attitudes and preferences regarding biodiversity will be incorporated into the analytical framework of LiveDiverse through the inclusion of the concept of “territories of biodiversity and sustainability”, of the spatial aspects of vulnerability. The concept of “territory” will be used in two ways, the first external and geographical, and the second internal and perceptual. Used in a geographical sense, “territory” can be thought of either as the area defended by an animal or animals against others of the same species, or of other species, and in a political sense as the land under the jurisdiction of a state, city, or ruler; or simply as a large area of land (Oxford Concise Dictionary, 1993). “Territory” can also be thought of as a way to describe the spatial extent of human, physical interaction with the immediate surroundings – the personally experienced living environment (Kitchin 1994), and, in a psychological sense, “territory” can be thought of as the sum of perceptions of spatial aspects of the environment – the cognitive and affective schemata of perceptions of the environment. These cognitive and affective schemata consist of representations of information and knowledge, organised in different internal structures (Golledge 1987) and information and knowledge of environmental issues outside of the individual’s territory of personal experience are communicated through education, the mass media etc., and influenced by the society and culture that the individual lives in. Maps (both physical and perceptual), will be used in this project as a way to examine and describe aspects of individuals’ personal and societal frameworks of environmental beliefs and attitudes. These mental frameworks can also be referred to as belief systems. Beliefs can be described as firmly held convictions, and they involve an acceptance of things, facts, statements, etc. Beliefs, which can consist of both cognitive and affective elements, are linked in cognitive frameworks and comprise the structure within which evaluative attitudes can exist. Attitudes, on the other hand, are usually described as dispositions to respond favourably to or unfavourably to an event, person, object or institution (Ajzen, 1988). Within the cognitive and affective frameworks of beliefs, attitudes are therefore evaluative responses towards objects (Tesser 1990). Beliefs, as strong convictions, and acceptance of things, facts, statements, etc are also likely to be influenced by the spatial aspects of the belief object. Having conducted the analyses of areas considered vulnerable in terms of natural science, socio-economics, law and policy, and public perceptions, maps will then be constructed in each case study and incorporated into a GIS system. The aim of these maps will be to identify biodiversity ‘hot-spots’, that is, places where there is a high risk (according to natural science criteria), and a low capability (according to the socio-economic, law and policy criteria). The cultural perspectives data will then be superimposed to examine similarities and differences. The use of GIS to map vulnerability is not new, but very few attempts have been made to integrate different perspectives (bio-physical, socio-economic) in this way. A number of earlier examples do however exist and the experiences from them will be utilised in LiveDiverse. For example, David Sauri cites Clark et al (1998) who attempted to map vulnerability to flooding by storm surges in the town of Revere, in the Boston Metropolitan Area. The study included physical exposure and intrinsic or structural vulnerability. An index of 30 socio-demographic and economic variables was used. The result was a vulnerability map that identified nine different areas in the city. Another example presented by Souri is that of Susan Cutter and associates (Cutter et al, 2000) who developed maps for multiple hazards occurring at a single place. The authors calculated and mapped what they call “biophysical vulnerability”( number and frequency of extreme natural events) and “social vulnerability” (from socio-demographic and economic data obtained from the US Census). The two resulting maps were overlaid and the resulting map differentiates up to five different vulnerability categories. Souri points out that vulnerability is characterized by a high degree of spatial variability, and areas with high biophysical vulnerability and those with high social vulnerability do not necessarily coincide.

LiveDiverse Phase 4 – Integrated vulnerability scenarios and LiveDiverse to help improve policy-making capacity for biodiversity and livelihoods (WP8 and WP9)

The main aim of LiveDiverse is to contribute knowledge and insights that can improve policy-making capacity for biodiversity and livelihoods. This is fundamental. All parts of the project lead to this. The contribution to improving policy-making in biodiversity and livelihoods are planned to contribute to biodiversity and improvements of sustainable livelihoods through recommendations for the development of the present resource utilization and socio-economic and cultural systems of the affected people (APs). Finally, using the method developed by Gooch and Stålnacke (Gooch and Stålnacke 2006) biodiversity and livelihood scenarios will be developed. These scenarios will take into account the main perspectives; biological diversity risk and socio economic ability to cope with effects of this risk. Working in a 15-year perspective, the scenarios will examine future possible trends, threats and developments in order to formulate strategies and policy to meet the needs of both biodiversity and livelihoods. During recent years the use of scenarios for environmental policy-making has attracted considerable attention from both the scientific community and policy-makers (see, for example, (Greeuw, Asselt et al. 2000). Many of these applications have however either focussed on larger spatial scales, such as countries (Kahane 1997), or have utilised relatively well-known cases where information, while not comprehensive, has been comparatively readily available (Greeuw, Asselt et al. 2000). In the case of regional levels, scenarios have not yet been so widely used. Scenarios are not precise predictions of the future (Porter 1985) but should be seen as simulation tools, as a technique similar to, but different from, models (Jouvenel 2000). Alcamo (Alcamo 2001) identifies five main elements of scenarios; these are a description of the changes that may take place; of the main factors and driving forces that influence these changes; a definition of the beginning year of the scenario, the base year; the selection of the time frame for the scenarios and the adoption of time steps; and the construction of the storylines, which are narrative descriptions of possible futures. Scenarios, through their simplification of available information and their use of alternative, possible futures, can make the process of challenging uncertainty in water management easier. Utilising past and present trends, scenarios attempt to see which factors might lead to likely futures. A combined qualitative/quantitative method will be used in Live Diverse, where quantitative scenarios of biological diversity and economic development will be combined with qualitative/explorative scenarios of public perceptions and cultural, social and spiritual values.

Knowledge to improve adaptive policy capacity

The output of the scenarios will lead directly into policy recommendations and knowledge for sustainable development. Preliminary aims are the following. These will be refined and re-defined in cooperation with local populations, stakeholders, end-users and cultural groups.

  • To provide knowledge to help improve current cultivation systems, sustainable forest utilization, fishery and livestock breeding systems while at the same time retaining biodiversity;
  • To develop methods to facilitate the planning and implementation of technical inputs and activities in consultation with and participation of the groups affected;
  • Through the biodiversity and livelihood scenarios, provide knowledge on how the input and implementation of technical inputs, skills and capacity training can be organised to meet the absorptive capacity;
  • Provide knowledge to enhance the role and competence of both men and women through gender separated planning, training and capacity building;
  • Demonstrate how it is possible to recognize the local language and culture through communication and capacity building in the local language and at a level and way that is the most beneficial for the local villagers;
  • Provide knowledge that helps ensure that the livelihoods development components are implemented in a way that contributes to a long-term environmental and socio-economic sustainability;
  • Demonstrate how it is possible to closely connect biodiversity retention and livelihoods development with other improvements and capacity building in order to improve the general living standards, health and hygiene;
  • Provide recommendations on how to reach long-term poverty reduction and raised living standards of the local peoples after the LiveDiverse Project completion.


The policy recommendations on how to restore and develop the various livelihoods activities connected to cultivation, forest utilization, livestock breeding and fishery should be based on the current level of knowledge and the existing skills of the local people in order to increase and improve their capacities and practices in the various areas. The livelihoods restoration and development recommendations should also aim at increasing the knowledge and improving the skills of the local people in order to achieve a long-term sustainable development, considering both the environmental resources in the LiveDiverse case areas and the socio-economic systems. A participatory approach is necessary (WP3) to ensure that the various inputs and activities are implemented at a proper level for the poor, low-educated ethnic minority people to benefit from them. Capacity building will be provided not only for livelihoods improvement but also in knowledge and understanding of the various legal, social and cultural issues connected to infrastructural developments in the case areas. LiveDiverse will provide knowledge on how local people can be provided with awareness raising in handling with new situations and the opportunities that they can bring about, without jeopardising biodiversity values. All the various LiveDiverse activities aim at providing knowledge that helps establish sustainable resource utilization that secures biodiversity while at the same time helping to create socio-economic systems that will remain after the Project period. Through recommendations for livelihoods development and capacity building programs suggestions will be formulated on how the general living standards can be improved, including health, hygiene, education, as well as access to information and communications.