Progressing community-based natural resource management in Zimbabwe
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Zimbabwe is ushering in a new era of community-based natural resource management (CBNRM). It is moving away from place-based wildlife management initiatives to more internationally linked forestry carbon projects which focus on the sequestration of carbon through conservation of forests and the subsequent trading of carbon credits. Learning lessons from the varied and complex history of Zimbabwe’s main CBNRM project – the Communal Areas Management Programme for Indigenous Resource Use (CAMPFIRE) – is necessary to ensure a successful progression of environmentally and socially just CBNRM in Zimbabwe. As such, the Sustainability Research Institute (University of Leeds, with funding from the University of Leeds Sustainable Agricultural Bursary and the ESRC) and the Centre for Applied Social Sciences (University of Zimbabwe, with funding from STEPS, IDS, Sussex) held a workshop at the CASS Trust, Harare, in May 2014, titled ‘Progressing CBNRM in Zimbabwe’. The aim of the workshop was to progress debates from the traditionally observed contradictory literature and analysis on the successes and failures of CAMPFIRE into ways forward, given the new CBNRM context emerging within the country. The workshop was attended by a range of professionals from policy making, practice (at both local and national level) and research in the CBNRM arena, who together discussed how to progress CBNRM, both theoretically and practically, given the rise of international emphasis on climate change mitigation and the emergence of subsequent new CBNRM-based projects (i.e. REDD+, co-management etc.). The workshop ultimately identified multiple lessons, including those listed on page 1. It also flagged related areas of urgent focus.