- ItemOpen AccessWhat explains positive social outcomes of community-based rangeland management in Mongolia?(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2015-06) Ulambayar, Tungalag, author; Fernandez-Gimenez, Maria, author; Batjav, Batbuyan, author; Baival, Batkhishig, author; Nutag Action and Research Institute, publisherCommunity-based rangeland management (CBRM) has been proposed as a promising option to reduce rural poverty and resource degradation in Mongolia. However, results have been mixed. Studies about the factors influencing CBRM success have been limited. We explored the mechanisms underlying social outcomes of Mongolian CBRM. The study revealed that access to diverse information, leadership, knowledge exchange and rules facilitated the effect of formal organization on pastoralists' traditional and innovative rangeland practices, proactive behavior, and social networking. Importantly, information diversity had a triggering effect on the other three facilitating variables. This chain of four mediators collectively increased the effect of the formal organization on the above social outcomes. We also found that ecological zone had a moderating effect on the relationship between formal organization and members' proactive behavior and social networking.
- ItemOpen AccessWhat matters most in institutional design for community-based rangeland management in Mongolia?(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2015-06) Ulambayar, Tungalag, author; Fernandez-Gimenez, Maria, author; Batjav, Batbuyan, author; Baival, Batkhishig, author; Nutag Action and Research Institute, publisherThis study tested the effect of institutional design principles on social outcomes of evolving pastoral institutions in post-socialist Mongolia. Using data from 77 community-based rangeland management (CBRM) groups and 392 member households, we examined the effect of donor facilitation on institutional design. We found that donor facilitation approach significantly influenced group attributes and their external environment, but not institutional arrangements. The study confirmed that small group size, homogeneous interests, and heterogeneity of well-being are important group characteristics that predict higher levels of information diversity, leadership, and income diversity. Institutional arrangements such as the presence of sanctions, group-devised rules, frequent meetings, and recording documents increased cooperation, rules, and information diversity. Similarly, access to training and local government support provided a favorable external environment for increasing social outcomes. Furthermore, group characteristics such as dependence on livestock, homogeneity of interests, and leader legitimacy were critical for increasing social capital, livelihoods, sustainable rangeland practices, and proactive behavior of members. More frequent meetings of leaders were the most influential for these outcomes. Local government support and available donor support were associated with increased trust and norms of reciprocity, sustainable rangeland management practices, proactiveness, and livestock holdings. Lastly, group attributes and external environment influenced social outcomes of pastoral CBRMs in Mongolia more than institutional arrangements.
- ItemOpen AccessDo formal, community-based institutions improve rangeland vegetation and soils in Mongolia more than informal, traditional institutions?(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2015-06) Reid, Robin S., author; Jamsranjav, Chantsallkham, author; Fernandez-Gimenez, Maria E., author; Angerer, Jay, author; Tsevlee, Altanzul, author; Yadambaatar, Baasandorj, author; Jamiyansharav, Khishigbayar, author; Ulambayar, Tungalag, author; Nutag Action and Research Institute, publisherSince the 1990's, herding communities across Mongolia have established over 2000 community-based rangeland management (CBRM) organizations to improve livestock grazing management and reverse perceived declines in rangeland (grassland) productivity. Here, we compare the vegetation and soils of rangelands managed by these formal community-based herder groups (CBRM) with those managed by informal traditional neighborhoods (non-CBRM) in four ecological zones across Mongolia. A companion study shows CBRM used both traditional and innovative rangeland management practices more often than traditional neighborhoods. We hypothesized that this should then result in better rangeland vegetation and soils in CBRM-managed than non-CBRM managed rangeland. We sampled vegetation and soils in winter pastures around 143 livestock camps or water points in soums (counties) with and without CBRM management. We explicitly controlled for grazing intensity by sampling plots along grazing gradients at 100, 500 and 1000 m from these impact points. At each 50 x 50 m plot (n=428) we sampled standing biomass, plant cover, basal gap, species richness, forage quality, and soil and site characteristics. We also compared paired time series of MODIS NDVI data in counties with and without CBRM organizations from 2000-2014 to quantify changes in length of the growing season, and current and previous season greenness (a proxy for biomass accumulation). We then analyzed all data using general linear models and χ2 tests. CBRM had surprisingly few and subtle impacts on vegetation and soils in Mongolia's rangelands, whether measured in the field or by remote sensing, compared with areas managed by more traditional neighborhood groups. Some CBRM pastures supported more litter biomass, plant connectivity and less soil erosion, and a lower abundance of grazing tolerant or annual plant species than non-CBRM pastures in some ecological zones. CBRM management appears to modestly improve vegetation condition in the steppe than other ecological zones. At the soum level, we could see no differences in the length of the growing season, current season greenness or current and previous season greenness of the vegetation over the 15 years from 2000-2014. We did find, however, that herding families that participate in CBRM groups hold more livestock, sometimes twice as many, in 3 of the 4 ecological zones. This suggests that CBRM management may be having more impact on pastures than our data show, since these pastures can support more livestock without losing rangeland vegetation abundance and soil retention capacity.
- ItemOpen AccessTime series analysis of satellite greenness indices for assessing vegetation response to community based rangeland management(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2015-06) Angerer, J. P., author; Kretzschmar, J. K., author; Chantsallkham, J., author; Jamiyansharav, K., author; Reid, R., author; Fernandez-Gimenez, M. E., author; Nutag Action and Research Institute, publisherAfter the transition of Mongolia's agriculture sector to a market economy in the early 1990's, community-based rangeland management (CBRM) organizations have been established across Mongolia to cooperatively manage rangeland resources. We hypothesized that rangeland ecoregions under CBRM would have greater biomass than ecoregions managed using traditional herder practices. We used time series analysis of AVHRR (8-km resolution, 1982 to 2012) and MODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) (250-m, 2000 to 2013) to calculate integrated NDVI (iNDVI) as a proxy for vegetation biomass. To address whether CBRM response is scale related, we created buffers of increasing distance around livestock winter shelter locations in soums where CBRM programs had been initiated and soums without formal programs. Spatial averages of iNDVI were calculated within buffer boundaries for each location, stratified by ecological zone. A repeated measures mixed model with yearly rainfall as a covariate was used to test for differences in iNDVI for CBRM status over time for buffer distances of 1, 2, 5, 10, and 30 for MODIS, and 10 and 30 km for AVHRR. In general, results were similar across buffer distances indicating that average vegetation response was similar for distances greater than 1 km around sampling sites. For MODIS NDVI, sites in the Desert Steppe and Eastern Steppe did not have significantly higher productivity in CBRM managed soums over time, regardless of buffer size. Mountain and Forest Steppe (MFS) locations had higher iNDVI in non-CBRM sites throughout the time series for both NDVI data sets, although these differences were not statistically significant. CBRM sites in the Steppe zone had higher iNDVI throughout the time series for both MODIS and AVHRR. Given that these differences occur throughout the AVHRR time series, they do not appear to be the result of CBRM activities. Our findings indicate that differences in vegetation response as a result of CBRM activities were not detected during the time series using productivity proxies from satellite imagery. In addition, the MODIS time series may be too short for detecting CBRM differences since it does not include data prior to when most CBRM programs were implemented.
- ItemOpen AccessManagement of dzud risk in Mongolia: mutual aid and institutional interventions(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2015-06) Thrift, Eric D., author; Ichinkhorloo, Byambabaatar, author; Nutag Action and Research Institute, publisherHeavy livestock losses from severe winter conditions (dzud) in Mongolia in recent years have prompted a variety of interventions by government and development agencies, aiming to reduce herders' vulnerability to severe weather and other climate factors. Unfortunately, many of these interventions have not systematically diminished risk to herders. In this paper we identify several strategies deployed by herders for managing dzud risks and impacts through informal mutual aid networks. We contrast these strategies to interventions taken by international donor agencies operating in Mongolia, which have largely focused on the household as an independent socio-economic unit. We conclude that risk mitigation can be improved through recognition of informal mutual aid networks, and through support to mutual aid institutions.