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Year of Global Africa: Eye on Africa - Elizabeth Edna Wangui, Ohio University, Dept. of Geogra
Thursday, 22 Feb 2018
12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
201 International Center, MSU
Event Details:

"Gendered barriers to participating in a payment for ecosystem services project in Githambara micro-catchment of the Upper Tana Basin, Kenya"

Dr. Wangui is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at Ohio University. She earned her PhD in Geography from Michigan State University in 2004. She has over two decades of experience in the area of rural livelihoods change in East Africa. Her central concern is the examination of the role that gender plays in defining people's access and control of resources that are central to their livelihoods. She has done fieldwork in pastoralist communities coping with climatic and other changes in Kenya and Tanzania. She has also studied older persons coping with new livelihood challenges brought on by HIV/AIDS. Her current research examines gendered dynamics of a large payment for ecosystems services project in the Upper Tana watershed in Central Kenya.

Payment for ecosystem services (PES) is a market-based approach to environmental conservation that seeks to assign values to ecosystem services maintained by diverse resource users. One of the most common types of PES schemes engages local land managers in the conservation of freshwater "provisioning services". The Nairobi Water Fund (NWF), focused on the Upper Tana River in Kenya, exemplifies such a scheme. It is the first of its kind on the African continent and is, therefore an important model for other watersheds in Kenya and elsewhere. This research explores the intra-household barriers to participation in PES and how they are gendered. The geographic focus is the Githambara micro-catchment area, one of nineteen micro-catchments of the Upper Tana included in the PES.