Using comparative case studies of resilience in agricultural landscapes in semi-arid regions (drylands or the savanna-zone), research will focus on improving water management in agricultural systems to increase food production in line with the Millennium Development Goal's while also addressing cross-scale linkages and trade-offs with other water uses. The project will also address tradeoffs involving resource allocations where there are incongruent short term interests and where finding an optimal solution is challenging. Such situations can produce social conflicts that block efforts at management, collaboration, allocation, or restoration. This research theme emphasizes the role of stakeholder engagement and exchange of knowledge with local actors in the case study areas.
In addition to drawing upon existing RA case studies where water and agriculture are important, three new case studies have been suggested: the Sahel of West Africa, the state of Andra Pradesh in India, and Inner Mongolia in China. Two proposals for starting this work have been developed:
a) Environmental trade-offs: Water and Agriculture in Drylands, led by Josef Tainter and Charles Redman, Arizona State University and submitted to National Science Foundation in the US.
b) Sources of resilience in water scarce agricultural landscapes: Understanding the greening trend in the Sahel, led by Line Gordon and Johan Rockström, and submitted to Formas, Sweden.
A session at Stockholm Water Week was convened in August 2006 on Water and Resilience - Water Management and Policy in an Age of Complexity, by Centre for Transdisciplinary Environmental Research (CTM, Stockholm University), Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and Swedish Water House (SWH). The workshop was coordinated by Dr. Victor Galaz with invited speakers from the RA nodes of CSIRO Australia, Stockholm Environment Institute and Stockholm University.
A brochure outlining the project can be downloaded here.
Contacts: Johan Rockström (Stockholm Environment Institute, SEI) and Charles Redman (Arizona State University)