Photo Credit: Taylor Frerichs
I have always maintained a deep appreciation for the natural world, which led to a degree in Conservation Biology and Ecology from Montana State University. Academic and professional experiences around the world developed my awareness of the importance of incorporating solutions outside the ‘hard’ sciences.
As a postgraduate student at the University of Edinburgh, I am combining my ecology background with my desire to better understand the human dimension of the conservation debate; particularly as it relates to inequality, gender, climate change, and human-wildlife conflict.
Examining the Impact of Wildlife Management Areas and Gender on Environmental Shock Resilience in Tanzania
My research will be looking into the role both gender and Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) play in determining the resilience to environmental shocks of communities in Northern and Southern Tanzania.
WMAs are a form of Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) first implemented in the country in 2003. CBNRM intends to balance local livelihoods and development with conservation objectives.
Poorer communities are disproportionately vulnerable to environmental change as they often lack access to abundant assets to buffer during times of hardship. Additionally, women may be more vulnerable than men because of differentiated gender roles.
Using survey data collected as part of the project Coping with El Niño in Tanzania: Differentiated local impacts and household-level responses, I will be examining how wellbeing and coping strategies differ between men and women across the country, and between women in WMA and non-WMA villages, for environmental shocks including the El Nino of 2015-2016.
Aidan Keane (University of Edinburgh, School of GeoSciences)