Delgado-Serrano M.M., Oteros-Rozas E., Calvo-Boyero, D., Ortíz Guerrero, C., Escalante, R. and Corbera, E.

Regional Environmental Change. DOI: 10.1007/s10113-017-1223-4.

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 socialecological 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.

Delgado-Serrano M.M., Vanwildemeersch P., London, S., Ortíz Guerrero, C., Escalante, R. and Rojas, M.

Ecology and Society 21(2):36.

Abstract: Local communities collectively managing common pool resources can play an important role in sustainable management, but they often lack the skills and context-specific tools required for such management. The complex dynamics of social-ecological systems (SES), the need for management capacities, and communities’ limited empowerment and participation skills present challenges for community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) strategies. We analyzed the applicability of prospective structural analysis (PSA), a strategic foresight tool, to support decision making and to foster sustainable management and capacity building in CBNRM contexts and the modifications necessary to use the tool in such contexts. By testing PSA in three SES in Colombia, Mexico, and Argentina, we gathered information regarding the potential of this tool and its adaptation requirements. The results suggest that the tool can be adapted to these contexts and contribute to fostering sustainable management and capacity building. It helped identify the systems’ dynamics, thus increasing the communities’ knowledge about their SES and informing the decision-making process. Additionally, it drove a learning process that both fostered empowerment and built participation skills. The process demanded both time and effort, and required external monitoring and facilitation, but community members could be trained to master it. Thus, we suggest that the PSA technique has the potential to strengthen CBNRM and that other initiatives could use it, but they must be aware of these requirements.