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Impacting communities in Kenya one organization at a time

In Kenya, SPACES team members have led community dialogues in the local communities where SPACES research was gathered. The dialogues were a way for SPACES to thank the communities for their participation in the research process and for the community members to discuss the research findings amongst themselves and what the implications are for the community. The communities came up with several suggestions and solutions to some of the key issues they face.

The suggestions included 1.) capacity building on aspects like alternative livelihood activities, women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship skills, alternative fishing techniques, mangrove conservation, 2.) support on fish storage facilities, improving infrastructure and 3.) access to financial institutions, markets, education, and mangrove licenses. The suggestions from the communities in Kenya were taken back to key stakeholders in the region including, Kenyan Fisheries Services, Act Change Transform (ACT), Youth Enterprise Development Fund, Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), Coast Development Authority (CDA), Kenya Forest Service (KFS), and the Anglican Development Service (ADS) Pwani.

During the meetings with the key stakeholders, SPACES team members also shared key findings. The team spent a couple of hours with each stakeholder to thoroughly discuss the findings and the suggestions from […]

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Investigating patterns of subjective wellbeing in Kenya and Mozambique

Early in June at the Stockholm Resilience Centre (SRC), Nicole Reid successfully presented her  masters thesis on “Patterns of Subjective Wellbeing in Coastal Kenya and Mozambique and Factors Affecting It”. Nicole Reid was part of the Master’s program Social-Ecological Resilience for Sustainable Development at the SRC.

For her thesis, Nicole explored the subjective wellbeing data collected during the household survey in Kenya and Mozambique. Wellbeing is multidimensional and consists of three dimensions, the material, the relational, and the subjective. Material wellbeing is made up of material resources like money, clothing, fish, or food.  Relational wellbeing is composed of social relationships and personal relationships one has. The subjective dimension is about how people evaluate their lives in regards to their material resources, their social relationships, their role in society, and their cultural values and beliefs.

From here analysis Nicole found that:

  • Women respondents were generally more satisfied with their lives than men. People living in urban areas were more dissatisfied and life satisfaction varied with age for both genders.
  • Men related to the material and relational dimension of wellbeing and mentioned food, money, education, and clothing frequently. Women on the other hand related only to the relational dimension of wellbeing, and mentioned […]
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What has wellbeing got to do with the price of fish: A focus on fishers’ income might miss opportunities for sustainable poverty alleviation

SPACES research informs a call to consider fisheries benefits to wellbeing beyond income. An income focus can miss non-monetary dimensions of poverty, unequal distributions and whether it is spent and saved to improve people’s quality of life.

By Tim Daw and Ida Gabrielsson

For the past four years, SPACES has conducted research in coastal communities in Kenya and Mozambique. In the south coastal community of Vanga in Kenya, fishermen are less likely to be income poor than their non-fishing neighbours. However, they and their families are as likely as non-fishers to lack basic food, water and sanitation needs. This contradiction begs us to better understand how the wellbeing of poor coastal communities are supported by fisheries and how interventions can improve wellbeing while balancing the pressure on threatened coastal ecosystems.

Delegates discussing the global goal on ocean health in New York this week should carefully consider how fisheries contribute to wellbeing, and who gets those benefits. Fisheries interventions are usually focussed on protecting fish stocks, increasing the volumes of fish caught or generating higher prices for fishers’ catches. Many interventions typically assume that fisheries are only about income, and often ignore how benefits and costs are distributed to different people. A better […]

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Value Chain Analysis Data Treat

 

  • These figures illustrate how income generated from the reef fish value chain is shared amongst different actors in two sites in Kenya.
  • The size of the fish represents the total income generated by the value chain and this is divided into the coloured areas according to how it is shared amongst the groups. So fishers capture the most income in both sites. And male and female small scale traders capture the same amount in Mombasa.
  • In addition, the black human figures shows the relative number of people in each group.
    So although fishers capture most of the income, it is shared amongst a large number of them, while only a few individuals are in the group ‘Large scale male traders’ in Vanga. Meanwhile there are many more female traders in Mombasa compared to male traders, so each of them gets a smaller share, even though as a group they get the same as male traders.

Based on data from value chain analysis surveys by the SPACES team.

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Exploring wellbeing and ecosystem services at the Resillience for Development Colloquium, Johannesburg

Julio Machele, Marlino Mubai, Dominique Goncales, Tim Daw and Thomas Chagneau represented SPACES at this event, which brought together scientists and practitioners working on complex challenges of sustainable development in the context of complex social and ecological interconnections and change.

A session on SPACES results featured:
an introduction and overview of the political and historical context of development in Cabo Delgado by Marlino
discussion by Julio of the unequal distribution of ecosystem benefits according to gender, ethnicity and wealth,
– an analysis of how ecosystem service use is correlated to different dimensions of poverty in the SPACES household survey by Tim
– finally Dominique gave a rich picture of these issues in Cabo Delgado through stories, photographs and anecdotes drawn from her experience of conducting the SPACES social science fieldwork.

The discussion with the audience drew on the diversity of perspectives in these presentations to explore the role of ethnicity and migration and the impact of cultural attachments to place.  Ignoring such attachments during development interventions, for example if communities are relocated for infrastructure can lead to conflict and wellbeing impacts that might be overlooked by a conventional economic analysis.

Tom presented his analysis of the […]