Influence of community-based natural resource management strategies in the resilience of social-ecological systems

Abstract

Different social-ecological systems around the world are managed under community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) strategies. This paper analyses how CBNRM strategies influence the resilience of social-ecological systems to the disturbances they face, drawing upon the experience of three Latin American cases (two in Mexico and one in Colombia). The cases differ in their CBNRM approach and in the time these governance systems have been in place. By using a mixed-method approach, we review the socio-ecological history and describe each CBNRM characteristics. We then assess their resilience to socioeconomic and environmental disturbances through a set of indicators. We found that CBNRM strategies influence positively and negatively resilience and that internal decisions might address important threats. On the positive side, the social-ecological systems with longer tradition of CBNRM and more local buy-in of commonly agreed objectives appear to be more resilient to environmental challenges. But, internal governance factors such as power imbalances, poor income distribution, and gender inequities linked to CBNRM undermine resilience and foster out migration. Finally, communities appear to have limited capacities to cope with external disturbances such as global drivers of change or national policies that negatively affect their social-ecological resilience.

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  • 23 October 2017

    The published online version contains mistake. Author name was incorrectly captured. Instead of Maria del Mar Delgado-Serrano was incorrectly captured as Ma del Mar Delgado-Serrano. Correct author group section is shown above.

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Acknowledgements

This research was funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Commission in the frame of the projects “Community-based management of environmental challenges in Latin America- FP7-ENV2011-282845 COMET-LA” and “Assessing the effectiveness of community-based management strategies for biocultural diversity conservation- FP7-ENV-2011-282899 COMBIOSERVE”. EC acknowledges the financial support of the UAB-Banco de Santander Talent Retention Programme and EOR acknowledges the Andalusia Talent Hub postdoctoral program. We also acknowledge the collaboration of the people in the Community Council Alto y Medio Dagua (Colombia), Santiago Comaltepec (Mexico), and Once de Mayo (Mexico) in the research. IRM acknowledges the financial support of the Spanish government’s Research Agency through a “Ramón y Cajal” research fellowship (RYC-2015-17676).

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Correspondence to Maria del Mar Delgado-Serrano.

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The original version of this article was revised: Author name was incorrectly captured. Instead of Maria del Mar Delgado-Serrano was incorrectly captured as Ma del Mar Delgado-Serrano.

A correction to this article is available online at https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-017-1237-y.

Editor:Marc J. Metzger.

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Delgado-Serrano, M., Oteros-Rozas, E., Ruiz-Mallén, I. et al. Influence of community-based natural resource management strategies in the resilience of social-ecological systems. Reg Environ Change 18, 581–592 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-017-1223-4

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Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Environmental challenges
  • Global change
  • Rural communities
  • Social-ecological systems