People, natural resource management and forests

After working in the natural resource management sector in Namibia as a Forester and Conservation Scientist for 17 years, Dr Jonathan Kamwi, now a lecturer in the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources Sciences, took a keen interest in understanding the forest ecosystems in Africa. He is specifically intrigued by the Miombo dry forest and woodlands of southern Africa.

Q. What is your research mostly focused on?

A. My aim is to understand the link between people and natural resource governance, the use of resources and interventions that will successfully promote sustainable forest management. This includes a focus on the drivers of change in land cover and the modelling of carbon dynamics in natural woodland systems. Furthermore, the evaluation of the models used for future engagement in forest management.

Q. Kindly help us understand the link between people and natural resource management, especially forests

A. People depend on forests and forests depend on people. Forests are important contributors to the livelihoods for many rural communities, it is thus important for them to use and manage forests in a sustainable way. Unsustainable use of forests resources is a function of unstable livelihoods for communities.

Q. What is being done to ensure sustainable forest management in Namibia?

A. Emphasis is currently placed on issues associated with Sustainable Forest Management (SFM). Chiefly, core issues such as natural and artificial regeneration (tree planting) of commercially exploited species. Linked to this is also the issue of value-addition to forest products, which is currently performing below its potential. In fact, more forest products could be brought to the market, which would contribute directly to rural development.

Q. How to can biodiversity conservation and the sustainable use of natural resources in the context of global change in Namibia be reconciled?

A. Firstly, the state of conservation of natural resources and drivers to guide decision-making need to be assessed. Secondly, the conservation gaps of protected area systems in relation to their capacity to protect biodiversity and carbon stocks need to be analysed. Then, lastly, participatory natural resource management tools need to be adapted to socio-economic contexts in Namibia.

 

Date: 
Friday, August 16, 2019
for Month: 
August, 2019

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