Brief information on topic and research question:My study intends to critically analyze and assess several international debates on the potentials of Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+) project in reducing carbon emissions, the rate of deforestation and forest degradation. This is a result of my observations that REDD+ debates have been contextualized within the broad/larger macro structural context thereby disregarding social processes taking place at the micro level including the lived experiences of local people who are directly targeted by the said REDD+ project. In lieu of this, my objective is to find out the likely social implications inherent in the arguments and/or counterarguments of the said debates on the implementation of REDD+ in Tanzania. My research questions are:
1.What is the nature of discourse(s) on REDD+ and the knowledge they produced on the conservation of forests for reducing emission from deforestation and degradation?
2.How do forest-dependent communities engage with experts’ discourses on Reduced Emissions, Deforestation and Degradation?
3.What is the forest-dependent communities’ lived experiences, perceptions, and knowledge on Deforestation and Degradation processes?; and
4.What does it take for forest dependent communities to benefit from Reduced Emissions, Deforestation and Degradation initiatives?
As a result, this study contributes to the debates/discourses on Reduced Emissions, Deforestation and Degradation (commonly known as REDD+) and natural resources conservation in a broader sense, both empirically and theoretically, that is it provides an alternative conceptualization of REDD+ beyond nature/society dualism.
Progress to date:
i.Presentation and approval of my PhD proposal at departmental level on May, 2015
ii.Secured college’s higher degree approval and research clearance from Vice Chancellors’ office
iii.On June, 2015 a pre-field work for all ten REDD+ implementing villages in Lindi as a study site has been accomplished with a purposes of identifying key actors and selecting specific villages which will be purposively selected for the coming intensive data collection.
iv.Published one article titled “Mukono, D. and R.F. Sambaiga (2016), A Critical Review on the Major Conceptual strands/debates on the Reduced Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) and Improved Social Livelihoods”, Journal of Environmental Management and Sustainable Development, Vol. 5, No. 1 (2016). http:// dx.doi.org/ 10.5296/emsd.v5i1.8239
v.Conducted first phase of intensive field work in Lindi in May 2016