David Kimani Kuria

Project Summary:

The main goal of the project is to provide an understanding of local communities’ knowledge and their adaptability mechanisms in coping with current climate change trends with the aim of advocating for their inclusion in policy formulation and decision-making in climate changes interventions.

Through a case study at Kereita forest in central Kenya, the project will attempt to understand what local communities know of the potential implications of climate changes on the environment and their livelihoods, what actions or activities are they engaging in order to cope with the current trends of climate change and how have they coped with it over the time. Further, the project will assess how the local knowledge is being integrated into modern science.

Another objective is to examine whether the central government’s policies are supporting and integrating local knowledge in climate change related interventions. Currently some of the legislations like Forest and Environmental Acts recognize the participation of the local community in environmental conservation. However, this participation is mainly limited to protection with limited utilizations of some natural resources, particularly the state forests.

Specific objectives will be:

  • To assess the community awareness, their adaptation mechanisms and engagement in addressing current and potential impacts of climate changes;
  • To assess how local knowledge is being integrated in various climate changes strategies;
  • To investigate whether government policies are empowering local community to deal climate changes while meeting conservation objectives;
  • To assess potential implications of climate changes on community’s inventions for Important Birds Areas.

Proposed activities will include:

  • Policy analysis (country’s relevant policies on environment and community livelihoods/development);
  • Desktop studies;
  • Field studies through surveys;

A questionnaire survey will be carried to find out the level of knowledge about climate change by the communities, their responses to climate change and their integration/involvement in climate changes projects/programmes.

Expected outcomes

Despite possessing enormous knowledge about their surrounding, local communities are often left out in decision making and their knowledge valued less in conservation and development arena. This project seeks to reflect what communities know about climate change and the role the can play to address the impacts of climate change. It will specifically:

  • Provide an understanding of communities’ awareness on potential and current implications of climate changes to their livelihoods;
  • Provide understanding of communities’ activities and adaptation mechanism to climate change trends;
  • Give indications on which government policies are supporting communities’ inclusions and are addressing climate change;
  • Strengthen local partnerships in understanding climate change adaptation and addressing potential impacts of climate change;
  • Inform the policy makers and resources managers of communities potential and contribution in addressing climate changes;
  • Provide reflection of potential implications/impact of climate changes on Important Bird Areas and Conservation sites.

Download Project Final Report

For more information about David Kimani Kuria and/or his Fellowship project, contact him at davekenvo@hotmail.com.