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SPACES is a research project which was started in September, 2013 and will run up to August 2017. It aims to collaborate with stakeholders living and working at the coast to identify opportunities for coastal ecosystems to contribute more to poor people’s lives and wellbeing. In the video above, Professor Kate Brown introduces the SPACES aims and framework.

SPACES has also received additonal impact funding from ESPA. This funding will allow SPACES to continue to work with impact activities until December 2017.

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Our Core Objective

To contribute to poverty alleviation by combining scientific research and knowledge, with local expertise and coastal people’s own experiences and knowledge.

Our Activities

SPACES will study how the condition of coral reefs and mangroves, and the ecological dynamics that determine this, affects the ‘flow’ of potentially useful services, how human inputs turn these into benefits and how social processes distribute these benefits to different members of society.

The project will analyse these ‘ecosystem-wellbeing’ chains and compare them across different kinds of ecosystem services in different contexts to understand how ecosystem services are linked to wellbeing and to identify potential policy levers that can enhance how poor people benefit from ecosystem services.

SPACES activities include:

    1. Mangrove activities
    2. Coral reef and fisheries activities
      1. Fish Catch Monitoring
      2. Coral Reef Surveys
      3. Carbonate Budget
    3. well-being activities
    4. Household Survey
    5. Cultural services
    6. Tourism survey
    7. Value Chain Analysis
    8. Scenario workshops
    9. Policy analysis
    10. Impact activities
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Toy models and scenario development with stakeholders

SPACES will use participatory models and scenarios with stakeholders to understand the local social ecological systems in terms of feedback dynamics, trade-offs and opportunities for sustainable poverty alleviation. This part of the project will build on methods developed in a previous ESPA framework grant.

Our collaboration with a range of partners aims to have impacts on the wellbeing of poor inhabitants of the rapidly transforming coastal areas in Mozambique and Kenya.

Schematic of how the different components of the SPACES project will connect. Roman numerals refer to the different activity clusters: mapping ecosystem service - wellbeing chains through the (I) Ecological and (II) Social components; (III) systems-level analysis to compare these chains in different local contexts; and (IV) activities to increase the impact of the SPACES project.

Schematic of how the different components of the SPACES project will connect. Roman numerals refer to the different activity clusters: mapping ecosystem service - wellbeing chains through the (I) Ecological and (II) Social components; (III) systems-level analysis to compare these chains in different local contexts; and (IV) activities to increase the impact of the SPACES project.

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SPACES é um projecto de investigação que foi iniciado em setembro de 2013 e será executado até agosto de 2016. Destina-se a colaborar com as partes interessadas que vivem e trabalham na costa para identificar oportunidades de ecossistemas costeiros a contribuir mais para a vida das pessoas pobres e bem-estar. No vídeo abaixo, Professor Kate Brown introduz os objectivos espaços e estrutura.

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O Nosso Principal Objectivo

Para contribuir para a redução da pobreza através da combinação de pesquisa e conhecimento científico, com expertise local e as próprias experiências das pessoas costeiras e conhecimento.

Nossas Atividades

SPACES vai estudar como a condição dos recifes e manguezais de coral e as dinâmicas ecológicas que determinam isso, afeta o "fluxo" de serviços potencialmente úteis, como as entradas humanos transformá-los em benefícios e como processos sociais distribuem esses benefícios para diferentes membros da sociedade.

O projeto irá analisar estas correntes 'ecossistema', bem-estar e compará-los entre diferentes tipos de serviços ecossistêmicos em diferentes contextos para entender como os serviços dos ecossistemas estão ligados ao bem-estar e para identificar potenciais alavancas políticas que podem melhorar a forma como as pessoas pobres beneficiar de serviços ecossistêmicos.

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Modelos Brinquedos e Desenvolvimento Cenário Com as Partes Interessadas

SPACES usará modelos participativos e cenários com as partes interessadas para compreender os sistemas ecológicos sociais locais em termos de dinâmica de comentários, trade-offs e oportunidades para a redução da pobreza sustentável. Esta parte do projeto terá como base métodos desenvolvidos em uma anterior ESPA concessão quadro.

A nossa colaboração com uma série de parceiros pretende ter impactos sobre o bem-estar dos habitantes pobres das zonas costeiras rapidamente transformando em Moçambique e Quênia.

Esquemática de como os diferentes componentes do projecto SPACES irá se conectar. Algarismos romanos referem-se aos diferentes grupos de atividades: mapeamento serviço do ecossistema - cadeias de bem-estar através do (I) os componentes sociais e ecológicos (II); (III) a análise de sistemas de nível para comparar estas cadeias em diferentes contextos locais; e (IV) atividades para aumentar o impacto do projeto ESPAÇOS.

Esquemática de como os diferentes componentes do projecto SPACES irá se conectar. Algarismos romanos referem-se aos diferentes grupos de atividades: mapeamento serviço do ecossistema - cadeias de bem-estar através do (I) os componentes sociais e ecológicos (II); (III) a análise de sistemas de nível para comparar estas cadeias em diferentes contextos locais; e (IV) atividades para aumentar o impacto do projeto ESPAÇOS.

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About SPACES

SPACES is a research project which was started in September, 2013 and will run up to August 2017. It aims to collaborate with stakeholders living and working at the coast to identify opportunities for coastal ecosystems to contribute more to poor people’s lives and wellbeing. In the video above, Professor Kate Brown introduces the SPACES aims and framework.

SPACES has also received additonal impact funding from ESPA. This funding will allow SPACES to continue to work with impact activities until December 2017.

 

Our Core Objective

To contribute to poverty alleviation by combining scientific research and knowledge, with local expertise and coastal people’s own experiences and knowledge.

Our Activities

SPACES will study how the condition of coral reefs and mangroves, and the ecological dynamics that determine this, affects the ‘flow’ of potentially useful services, how human inputs turn these into benefits and how social processes distribute these benefits to different members of society.

The project will analyse these ‘ecosystem-wellbeing’ chains and compare them across different kinds of ecosystem services in different contexts to understand how ecosystem services are linked to wellbeing and to identify potential policy levers that can enhance how poor people benefit from ecosystem services.

 

SPACES activities include:

MANGROVE ACTIVITIES

This activity involves quantifying the transformations that occurred on the mangrove forests and comparing peri urban (although somehow remote) sites with totally rural sites. The study shows how the existence of alternative livelihood and cultural habits can influence the condition and status of ecosystems. It also gives an idea of what woody resources are still available for exploitation and can be used as a basis for management decisions. The study helps understand the provision of an ecosystem service in contrasting communities with different levels of poverty and dependence over natural resources. It also helps understand the impact of different levels of exploitation on the ecosystems heath, which in turn will also have impact on people’s wellbeing.

There are different patterns of use of mangrove woody resources, with the peri-urban community relying less on this resources and having their forest in better shape that the communities in rural setting. Main team member responsible and other team members involved is Celia Macamo (UEM), James Kairo (KMFRI), Lilian Mwihaki (KMFRI)

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CORAL REEF AND FISHERIES ACTIVITIES
Fish Catch Monitoring

One of the most important ecosystem services on the East African coast is the abundant fish of coral reefs and associated ecosystems, which provides protein, nutrients and income for many coastal communities. As part of the SPACES project, a small team of researchers in each country is monitoring the fisheries in several of the communities. Led by Caroline Abunge and Johnstone Omukoto in Kenya, and by Vera Julien, Almeida Guissamulo and Isabel de Silva in Mozambique, these teams are collecting data on how many people are fishing, how long they are fishing each day, what types of fishing gear and vessels they are using, and, most importantly, how much fish they are catching and of what size and species.

This data, which covers the human inputs, goods and valuation parts of the ecosystem service chains, will end up informing multiple parts of the SPACES project. In addition to giving us information on the status of the fisheries It links: with the Value Chain Analysis, which tracks and calculates how much income is derived from the fishery in each community; with the wellbeing work by providing a context by which fishers and those who depend on fishers interact; and with the Ecopath modelling by providing data which can be used to set-up models that we can then use to predict how fish catch and income might change in the future. This data will inform the scenarios and toy models that will be used in the stakeholder workshops.

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Coral Reef Surveys

The coral reef ecological surveys are being led by Tim McClanahan and Nyawira Muthiga. These surveys are designed to inform us about the abundance of the coral, algae, and fish communities on the reefs at each of our coral sites (Kongowea, Mkwiro, Vamizi and Pemba). The fish community is surveyed, using two methods along the same 100m long transects. The first data gathered is an estimate of the biomass of fish that are present on the reef. This is done along two 100m transects at each site, and all fish within 5 meters of the transect line are identified to family, and their size estimated to the nearest 10cm. We can then use published data on the relationship between fish weight and fish length to calculate how much fish biomass is present on the reef. The second type of data gathered, is the diversity of fish on the reef, collected by counting the number of fish present within 11 of the most important fish families on coral reefs present along each transect for each species. Coral abundance is collected using line intercept transects, where a 10m long tape is laid over the reef, and the amount of each type of coral, algae, or other substrate cover is measured. This is repeated 6-9 times to give an average amount of coral and algae cover on each reef.

This data underpins much of the way that the ecological aspect of the linked coral reef socioecological system interacts with the social side of the SPACES project. It provides us with a measure of the stocks of many of the ecosystem service chains, and helps us interpret how human activity has impacted on ecosystem processes. From a fisheries perspective, it is a second way, along with the fish catch surveys, to assess the status and sustainability of local fisheries. In addition, these surveys also provide many of the basic parameters that will be used to set up the Ecopath and Ecosim models.

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Carbonate Budget

One of the less considered aspects of coral reef ecosystem services are the services that are provided by the reef structural framework itself. These include providing a habitat and shelter for juvenile fishes, providing coastal protection from storms including calm, navigable waters inside the reefs that allow fishing almost year round, and through erosion, providing much of the sand that makes up the beaches used for tourism, recreation and other cultural events. As part of the SPACES project, Fraser Januchowski-Hartley is using an underwater census based approach, building on the ReefBudget work conducted by Chris Perry in the Caribbean. The reef framework is a product of the growth of corals, and the erosion of the reef substrate by parrotfish, urchins and other organisms. The Reefbudget approach is a way to work out if the reef is net accretional (growing) or erosional. To do this, we accurately measure how much of each genera and morphology of coral (for example, how much branching Acropora) there is within multiple 10m transects, and combine data these with published growth rates in order to estimate how much carbonate skeleton is being laid down by corals and coralline algae each year. We also count the number, type and size of the parrotfishes and urchins on each reef, and use these data in combination with bite size and feeding rates to work out how much of the reef framework is eroded each year. This also gives us an estimate of how much sand is being on reefs. Full details of the ReefBudget methodology and associated datasheets and spreadsheets can be downloaded here.

Like the coral reef ecological surveys, the carbonate budget surveys allow us to fill in many of the stock components of the ecosystem service chains, but they also allow us to calculate some of the flows and estimate the goods, particularly in the chains that describe the benefits from beaches and coastal protection (such as tourism and sense of place services) and can control the human inputs to some chains. The carbonate budget data is also going to contribute towards a system-dynamics model, which will be able to take inputs from the Ecopath and Ecosim models, and will produce outputs that can be fitted to the toy models that will be used in the stakeholder workshops.

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WELL-BEING ACTIVITIES

This activity involves carrying out in depth interviews with a subset of people that have been part of the household survey. We aim here to discuss their wellbeing by understanding what aspects of their lives are important to them, how satisfied they are with each aspects and their fears and hopes for the future. More specifically the respondents are asked to discuss how they benefit from various ecosystem services and how satisfied they are with the flow (or lack of flow) of these benefits.

Focus groups were also carried out to identify how various ecosystem service derived benefits can contribute to wellbeing and how important these links are. Finally we also carried out some focus groups to determine what are the main access mechanisms which can allow or prevent different people from obtaining benefits that the ecosystems can provide.

This allows us to identify how ESs contributes to WB and to what extent. It also allows us to get a wider view of wellbeing by looking at subjective and relational forms of wellbeing and also non ES specific aspects of wellbeing. Finally it allows us to identify some of the main access mechanisms at play. Good relationships are essential for WB. Ecosystem service derived benefits play an important role in maintaining these. Women and Men perceive the way the benefit from ES derived benefits very differently. Main team member responsible and other team members involved: Dominique, Anchinha, Amisse, Roberto, Carole, Jane, Siran and two household survey enumerators from Kenya.

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HOUSEHOLD SURVEY

Household surveys were conducted by trained local enumerators in three rural coastal communities along the Kenyan coast between March and May 2014. The short period of data collection ensured all households were interviewed during the same season. The household survey gathered data on household income and four poverty dimensions coming from different disciplines and including both objective and subjective wellbeing: i) Household income (economics/objective) ii) Material Style of Life (livelihoods/objective) iii) Life satisfaction (psychology/subjective) and iv) Basic human needs (wellbeing/combination of objective and subjective). A randomly selected sample of 722 households was included in the survey. However, to ensure representative within household variation of responses, we interviewed up to three people per household, including the household head, spouse and a randomly chosen third person aged 16 or above, resulting in a total of 847 interviews. All people were interviewed separately to avoid interference. In communities in which the density of fishing households (and thus the number of fisher interviews within the random sample) was low, fishers were oversampled with additional interviews with fishers in addition to the random household sample to ensure a number of fisher interviews were collected at all sites.

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CULTURAL SERVICES

There are three elements to the cultural services component of the spaces project. First, we set out to explore the practices people engage in, the places they visit, and how the meanings associated with these two aspects of coastal people’s lives contribute to their identities. This work has involved a series of in-depth interviews and focus groups, alongside a participatory method whereby coastal residents were encouraged to take photographs of meaningful aspects of their lives for discussion.

Second, we set out to establish how important respondents felt the identified cultural services were and how they related to other ecosystem services (e.g. fishery) explored in the SPACES project. We were particularly interested in where benefits were found, and the extent to which respondents grouped, or separated the various benefits. This work involved a series of semistructured interviews with a mapping exercise in which we pulled out four key themes from section one that reflects the cultural services coastal residents identify with.

Finally, we wanted to explore how the strength of peoples attachment to place, relates to their subjective wellbeing, and to two very different cultural services (recreation and traditional values). This data has been collected through semi-structured interviews, as part of the household surveys, and rolled out across over 800 households in 4 communities in both Kenya and Mozambique.

Christina Hicks, Carol Abunge, Kate Brown, Bjorn Schulte-Herbruggen, Amini Tengeza, and Jatieno Nyanpah are the team members involved in this work.

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TOURISM SURVEY

SPACES is carrying out two tourism research activities at the moment. In the first, we are mapping and analysing the ‘value chain’ around tourist day trips to the Kisite Mpunguti Marine Protected Areas on the coast of Kenya. This involves working out all of the different individuals and organisations that provide goods and services to tourists for these trips, and how much each of them gets from tourism. By looking as well at the identify and wellbeing status of the beneficiaries and the factors that limit their ability to access benefits, we hope to be able to make recommendations that can improve the positive impact of this tourism activity for local people in the future.

In our second tourism activity, we are trying to understand the impact of a recent slump in tourist numbers on the Kenyan coast. This happened during the SPACES project as a consequence of concerns about security linked to terrorism. The situation is very unfortunate, but it does give us an unusual opportunity to make a before and after comparison to reveal the impact of the dramatic reduction in tourism activities for local livelihoods in an area that seems quite dependent on tourism. We will be repeating some household surveys that were previously conducted before the slump occurred, so that we can understand the impact it has had, the coping strategies people have used, and how these might have impacted on the coastal ecosystem.

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VALUE CHAIN ANALYSIS

To get a better understanding of how a set of commodities flow from the point of extraction all the way to the end consumer, who benefits in this trade and opportunities for improvement in the chain the SPACES project conducts interviews with fishers, traders, processing companies as well as observations at landings sites and markets.

The commodities in focus are mixed reef fish (e.g. rabbitfish, grouper, goatfish), octopus, small pelagics and mangrove poles. Preliminary results points to some general differences between the commodities chains. Octopus are for example dried and sold through traders to Tanzania.

The main team member responsible and other team members involved: Wamukota A, Thyresson M, Daw T and Crona B and Drury O’Neil L Offman S Goncales D and the enumerators in Kenya: Rosebelle, Chris, Steve and Innocent and Mozambique: Anchinia, Antonio and Amis.

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Toy models and scenario development with stakeholders

SPACES will use participatory models and scenarios with stakeholders to understand the local social ecological systems in terms of feedback dynamics, trade-offs and opportunities for sustainable poverty alleviation. This part of the project will build on methods developed in a previous ESPA framework grant.

Our collaboration with a range of partners aims to have impacts on the wellbeing of poor inhabitants of the rapidly transforming coastal areas in Mozambique and Kenya.

 

Schematic of how the different components of the SPACES project will connect. Roman numerals refer to the different activity clusters: mapping ecosystem service - wellbeing chains through the (I) Ecological and (II) Social components; (III) systems-level analysis to compare these chains in different local contexts; and (IV) activities to increase the impact of the SPACES project.

Schematic of how the different components of the SPACES project will connect. Roman numerals refer to the different activity clusters: mapping ecosystem service - wellbeing chains through the (I) Ecological and (II) Social components; (III) systems-level analysis to compare these chains in different local contexts; and (IV) activities to increase the impact of the SPACES project.