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Local management and conservation of natural resources in the Atlantic Rainforest (Vale do Ribeira, São Paulo)

Grant number: 01/07618-2
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: January 01, 2002 - December 31, 2003
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology - Applied Ecology
Principal Investigator:Alpina Begossi
Grantee:Alpina Begossi
Host Institution: Núcleo de Estudos e Pesquisas Ambientais (NEPAM). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


The integrated analysis of data on the ecological aspects of the resource and the characteristics of the users is fundamental to evaluate the sustainability of an ecosystem. In this sense, users are potential partners in amanagement system, where its success depends on the compatibility of the forms of use, on the internal social structure of the user group and on the channels of integration between the local and external institutions. The objective of this project is to study the forms of local management in communities of two conservation units with different levels of ecological and institutional access for natural resources: the Alto Ribeira State Park (Petar), located in the mountainous region and legally restricted to indirect use through scientific research and tourism, and the Ilha Comprida environmental protection area, located in the costal region, and legally available for direct use of resources subject to some restrictions, both in the State of São Paulo. The study is being undertaken together with the Nucleus for Environmental Research (Nepam-Unicamp), in collaboration with the thematic project Forest and sea: uses and conflicts in the Vale do Ribeira and south coast, São Paulo and will run for two years. In the first year, we will undertake a contextual regional analysis of each area of study, in accordance with the ecological categories (topography, vegetal cover, types of resource) and social aspects (actors, conservation policy, infrastructure, tourism). In the second year, we will carry out a local contextualization of each study area, focusing on the local perception of the use of resources, family economics and social organization. The methodology adopted will be interviews, participative mapping and classification of satellite images. Comparisons between communities from different areas of study will be outlined in relation to the potential and the limitation of the local management of natural resources. The analysis of the data will focus both on practical aspects of the environmental question related to participative management and on theoretical aspects on the relationship between forms of appropriation and degree of conservation of the natural resources. (AU)

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