Other themes

Here you can find information on topics that go beyond the eight major thematic areas. If you are interested in acting as theme coordinator for an additional topic, please contact the BiomassNet administrator.

Callo-Concha D, Denich M, Ul Hassan M M, Place F, Wardell D A. 2017. Lessons for research, capacity development and policy in agroforestry for development. Agroforestry Systems

Since its foundation in the 1970’s, agroforestry science has evolved from setting its concepts,
research approaches and flagship technologies towards its increasing contribution to ecologically sound land use, food security and income generation in the global North and South. The Third World Congress on Agroforestry held in Delhi in April 2014 continued contributed to this evolution by focusing, beyond the scientific realm, on the implementation of findings by convening ad-hoc stakeholders and subjects. Accordingly, some of the congress sessions dealt with key aspects of how agroforestry can foster and contribute to development. The special
issue ‘‘Lessons for research, capacity development and policy in agroforestry for development’’ compiles approaches, experiences and overall lessons from (i) research, (ii) capacity development, and (iii) policy-making, capable to promote and generate developmental change through agroforestry. This introductory paper outlines the rationale for the three areas and the contributing articles.

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Callo-Concha D, Denich M, Lamers J P A, Schwachula A, Hornidge A K, Khamzina A, Borgemeister C. 2016. Bridging science and development: lessons learnt from two decades of development research. Agroforestry Systems

This paper presents the theoretical, operational and implementation premises that guide the
development research agenda of the Center of Development Research (ZEF), exemplified by three agroforestry-related case studies. First, the importance, assumptions, conditions and priorities for development research in the context of developing countries are reviewed. Second, the three core premises of ZEF’s research approach, (1) transdisciplinary to carry out research on real-life problems, (2) symmetrical partnerships with local stakeholders to sustain ground
activities and ensure implementation, and (3) capacity development to warrant future competences, are exposed. Third, these premises are exemplified and mirrored in three agroforestry-related case-studies: (1) slash-and-burn agriculture in the Brazilian Amazon,
(2) socio-ecological management of coffee-agroforests in Ethiopia, and (3) afforestation with multipurpose tree species in Uzbekistan. The paper concludes by streamlining the theoretical and practical premises exposed with the presented case-studies, and confirming how these have guided ZEF in the planning, implementation and continuation of development research programs. Although ZEF’s approach to development research is dynamic and continuously subject to assessment, its core remains guiding even after two decades of implementation, appearing to be a suitable pathway for reaching development objectives.

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Akoto Daniel S, Denich Manfred, Partey Samuel T, Oliver Frith, Kwaku Michael, A Mensah Alex. 2018. Socioeconomic Indicators of Bamboo Use for Agroforestry Development in the Dry Semi-Deciduous Forest Zone of Ghana. Sustainability

Bamboo agroforestry is currently being promoted in Ghana as a viable land use option to
reduce dependence on natural forest for wood fuels. To align the design and introduction of bamboo agroforestry to the needs of farmers, information on the determinants of bamboo acceptability and adoption is necessary. It is, therefore, the aim of this study to determine how socioeconomic factors, local farming practices and local knowledge on bamboo may influence its acceptability and adoption as a component of local farming systems. Data were collected from 200 farmers in the dry semi-deciduous forest zone of Ghana using semi-structured questionnaire interviews. The results show that farmers’ traditional knowledge on bamboo including its use for charcoal production and leaves for fodder are influential determinants of bamboo adoption. Among the demographic characteristics of farmers, age and gender are the most significant predictors. It is also evident that the regular practice of leaving trees on farmlands and type of cropping system may influence bamboo integration into traditional farming systems.

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Neumann Kai, Anderson Carl, Denich Manfred. 2017. Beyond wishful thinking: Explorative Qualitative Modeling (EQM) as a tool for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Economics Discussion Papers (2017-82)

The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in their generalized form need to be further
reflected in order to identify synergies and trade-offs between their (sub-)targets, and
to apply them to concrete nations and regions. Explorative, qualitative cause and
effect modeling could serve as a tool for adding crucial factors and enabling a better
understanding of the interrelations between the goals, eventually leading to more informed
concrete measures better able to cope with their inherent obstacles. This work provides and
describes a model that could serve as a template for concrete application. The generalized
model already points to some potential ambivalences as well as synergies that can be
reflected on using some of the latest theories and concepts from economics and transition
research, among other fields. Its first analyses cautiously raise doubts that some possible
assumptions behind the original Sustainable Development Goals might overlook some
systemic boundaries. For example, an undifferentiated increase of productivity contradicts
a lessened environmental impact and need for resources in light of potential planetary
boundaries.

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Kuhn Arnim, Endeshaw Kassahun Aberra. 2015. Trends and Drivers of Crop Biomass Demand: Sub-Saharan Africa vs the Rest of the World. 2015 3 Discussion paper, University of Bonn.

The global demand for crop biomass for both food and non-food use has markedly increased during the last decade. This recent trend was driven by population growth, income growth by consumers, industrial demand for nonfood raw materials, and demand for energy in the form of crop biofuels. Consequently, relative price levels for plant biomass have intermittedly doubled since 2006. The aim of this study is identify and compare global drivers, trends and projections of this process, looking at biomass production, consumption and related resource use in Sub-Saharan Africa as opposed to the Rest of the World. Model-based quantitative projections of global crop biomass markets are reviewed and compared, and supplemented by own projections.

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Fürst C, Frank S, Inkoom J N. 2016. Managing regulating services for sustainability. Marion Potschin, Roy Haines-Young, Robert Fish, R. Kerry Turner (eds.). Routledge Handbook of Ecosystem Services. Routledge London: 0-658 pp.

Regulating ecosystem services (ES) are those related to the control of biogeochemical cycles and biophysical structures at different scales (Watanabe and Ortega, 2011; Potschin and Haines-Young, 2011). Their contribution to human well-being is often indirect in that they support the supply with other services, such as provisioning services, or mitigate natural risks that endanger human health and life or cause economic damage. The key regulating services to consider are those which can be changed through management, planning, and policymaking, such as hazard mitigation (e.g. flooding), climate regulation (local and global), water purification, water erosion control, biological control of pests and diseases, and pollination (Sandhu et al., 2012).

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