Rangeland Management for Improved Pastoralist Livelihoods: The Borana of Southern Ethiopia

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Summary: This dissertation asks what can be done to revitalise degraded rangelands, and suggests that Holistic Management can help practitioners and pastoralists re-apply indigenous knowledge and skills under modern conditions to re-establish a dynamism important to rangeland health. Holistic Management uses a simple decision-making framework, confirms the principles for optimal grazing, and gives insight into the effects of other tools used in rangeland management on the health of the ecosystem (e.g. the long-term disadvantages of fire-maintained rather than animal-maintained grasslands, the negative impacts on rangeland productivity by excluding grazers, and the tendency of perceived solutions such as bush clearing to treat the symptoms of land degradation rather than the underlying causes). The most challenging aspect of HM is that it requires a considerable degree of management skill, time, and effort.

Skinner, Djihan, and Donald Skinner. 2010. Rangeland Management for Improved Pastoralist Livelihoods:  The Borana of Southern Ethiopia. Oxford Brookes University.