PRESENCE - Participatory Restoration of Ecosystem SErvices and Natural Capital (on the Eastern Cape) -
Applying transdisciplinary research approaches to support dynamic landscapes, ecosystem integrity & sustainable livelihoods in South Africa’s subtropical thicket biome.
PRESENCE will address key scientific knowledge gaps and undertake empirical research to ensure that restoration of degraded areas within South Africa’s subtropical thicket biome is:
- Stakeholder-driven and recognises trade-offs in restoring desired ecosystem services;
- ecologically sound and maximises ecosystem integrity and biodiversity outcomes;
- socio-economically acceptable in supporting livelihoods and cultural traditions;
- financially viable through the development of innovative financing mechanisms for ecosystem management (e.g. carbon credits (CDM), water credits, biodiversity credits);
- institutionally feasible through good governance arrangements and change processes.
In this seed phase, the PRESENCE project team is identifying relevant gaps in knowledge and expertise, priority scientific research questions and setting up a workshop of potential partners to be held in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa in November 2007. The purpose of this workshop is to define research strategies, PhD trajectories and expanded funding options to guiding restoration implementation in the Eastern Cape.In addition, a number of MSc students from the ESA Group are currently participating in a related pilot study (Integrated Ecosystem Services Assessment: Baviaanskloof (IESAB)) coordinated by EarthCollective and the Rhodes Restoration Research Group (R3G). The results of their theses will feed into the PRESENCE workshop and future project phases.
More information:PRESENCE webpage