Mapping Priority Areas for forest landscape restoration and improvement of rural community livelihoods in Guatemala's San Marcos Highlands
Recursos en Español - Spanish
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Gutierrez, F. V., Camino, R. D., & Imbach, A. (2012). Mapping priority areas for forest landscape restoration and improvement of rural community livelihoods in Guatemala's San Marcos highlands. Bois et Forêts des Tropiques, (313), 73-83.
Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) Turrialba, Costa Rica
Available at no cost from: Bois et Forêts des Tropiques
The main goal of this study was to map priority areas for forest landscape restoration in three watershades of south-western Guatemala. This region, predominantly rural area, is one of the poorest regions of the country and therefore have recently had high priority within the policies and strategies of socio-economic and environmental development of local government and international agencies.
This study used GIS and Multi-criteria decision analysis to generate the maps. These tools enabled the integration of a wide variety of complex information to evaluate different contexts and dynamics of the landscape.
The authors point out the fundamental role that that these geographic analysis tools have in supporting the decision making process of any program forestry / agroforestry landscape-scale restoration, especially in developing countries.
The analysis process resulted in maps and charts that indicate the areas (location and size) according to their degree of priority (green = low, yellow = red = medium and high) implementation by strategic line. The maps revealed spatial patterns of land use directly related to the dynamics between livelihoods and biophysics of the landscape.
The authors note that the success of any restoration plan will directly depend on the participation of local community groups and the formation of strategic alliances with external organizations and government sectors. The plan must recognize the inhabitants of watersheds and cultural diversity as a key element in the management and conservation of the landscape.
The authors concluded that the inclusion of criteria and indicators related to livelihoods in the spatial analysis allowed a better perception of the relationship, cause and effect, between the people and its territory.
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