New publications on forests and livelihood in Cameroon


Dr. Jude Kimengsi, our post-doctoral researcher at the Chair of Tropical Forestry, has recently published two articles about the linkages between forestry and livelihood diversification strategies, such as beekeeping and eco-tourism, in Cameroon. This has enriched the research activities in the Chair of Tropical Forestry in the theme of forestry and rural development. Moreover, insights from his research project has been used for our recent developmental workshop in Bonn.

In the study published in the journal Forests, Dr. Kimengsi looked at the contribution of the Kilum-Ijim Forest Reserve of Cameroon to livelihood strategies among the rural communities. Spread among 200 households in eight villages, the livelihood diversification patterns as well as the forest conservation approaches were analyzed. The other study published in Sustainability focused specifically on ecotourism in the same Forest Reserve.

The papers can be found here:

  • Kimengsi, J. N.; Kechia, M. A.; Azibo, B. R.; Pretzsch, J.; Kwei, J. (2019): Households’ Assets Dynamics and Ecotourism Choices in the Western Highlands of Cameroon. In Sustainability 11 (1844), pp. 1–16. DOI: 10.3390/su11071844.
  • Kimengsi, J.; Pretzsch, J.; Kechia, M.; Ongolo, S. (2019): Measuring Livelihood Diversification and Forest Conservation Choices: Insights from Rural Cameroon. In Forests 10 (2), p. 81. DOI: 10.3390/f10020081.

For the rural communities in the study, households with more favorable socio-economic condition tend to prefer non-forest activities to generate income. Migration is thus a common livelihood diversification strategy. However, increasing out-migration would derail rural stabilization. This implies the need to strike a balance between conservation approaches and rural livelihoods. In the study area, beekeeping is found to be the favorable activity for households who are engaged in forest-related activities. The beekeeping activity is managed by a cooperative. The resulting honey can be purchased in the domestic market.

Planting of bee-loving trees

Planting of bee-loving trees (© CAMGEW)

Beside deriving attractive entry points for policy-making, insights from this research were introduced for the multi-stakeholder role play at the workshop on “Stabilizing rural areas and preventing long-term migration in the Global South” at the Gustav-Stresseman-Institut in Bonn, which took place on 21 until 23 March 2019. More news about the role play can be found in our recent blog article written by our MSc Tropical Forestry students.

By Kendisha S. Hintz, with the support of Dr. Kimengsi

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