Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 18, Issue 11, pp 2875–2892 | Cite as

Exploring the effectiveness of integrated conservation and development interventions in a Central African forest landscape

  • Marieke Sandker
  • Bruce M. Campbell
  • Zacharie Nzooh
  • Terry Sunderland
  • Victor Amougou
  • Louis Defo
  • Jeffrey Sayer
Original Paper


Integrated conservation and development projects (ICDPs) have had limited success in addressing the often conflicting objectives of conservation and development. We developed a model with local participants to explore the trade-offs between conservation and development in southeastern Cameroon, where illegal hunting is regarded as the greatest challenge to conservation. We simulated the effects of different ICDP strategies by varying the degree of focus on antipoaching activities, anticorruption measures and direct development investments, and by varying the overall budget for such activities. Our outcome variables were numbers of selected wildlife species and household incomes. The model outcomes from the different scenarios were used to stimulate debate among stakeholders. Contributing to poverty alleviation while maintaining current animal population sizes will be extremely difficult and will require long-term external financial support. Devoting greater attention to improving local environmental governance emerged as the highest priority for this investment. We used the model outputs to inform some of the major policy makers in the region. Participatory modeling is a valuable means of capturing the complexities of achieving conservation at landscape scales and of stimulating innovative solutions to entrenched problems.


Cameroon Corruption Environmental governance ICDP Integrated conservation and development project Participatory modeling Trade-offs Simulation models 



Integrated conservation and development project


Nongovernmental organization


South east technical operational unit


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marieke Sandker
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bruce M. Campbell
    • 1
    • 3
  • Zacharie Nzooh
    • 4
  • Terry Sunderland
    • 1
  • Victor Amougou
    • 5
  • Louis Defo
    • 4
  • Jeffrey Sayer
    • 6
  1. 1.Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)Jalan CIFORYaoundéCameroon
  2. 2.Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM)Edif. de BiologíaMadridSpain
  3. 3.Charles Darwin University (CDU)DarwinAustralia
  4. 4.World Wildlife Fund (WWF)Jengi South Forest ProgrammeYokadoumaCameroon
  5. 5.Centre pour l’Education, la Formation et l’Appui aux Initiatives de Développement au Cameroun (CEFAID)YokadoumaCameroon
  6. 6.World Conservation Union (IUCN)GlandSwitzerland

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