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Workshop on Protected Area Certification at BfN in Bonn


On April 8, 2013, the CERPA project organized an expert workshop on certification in protected areas in southern Africa which was hosted by the Federal German Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) in Bonn. The aim was to identify conceptual and practical prospects and challenges for the development of protected area certificates in a development context.

11 experts from research institutes, NGOs and state agencies participated, namely: Petra Ascher (BMU), Dr. Rene Capote-Fuentes (Fairtrade International), Prof. Dr. Stephanie Engel (IED, ETH Zurich),  Prof. Dr. Ulrike Grote (IUW, Hannover University), Dr. Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst (BfN), Dr. Marion Karmann (FSC International), Günter Mitlacher (WWF Germany), Huon Morton (IUW, Hannover University), Dirk Röttgers (IUW, Hannover University), Dr. Till Stellmacher (IUW, Hannover University), and Dr. Etti Winter (IUW, Hannover University). Click here for the presentation.


CERPA at Conference "Scale in Environmental Governance" in Berlin, 7-8 March 2013

March, 13th

CERPA participated at the Conference "Scale in Environmental Governance:
Power Reconfiguration, Democratic Legitimacy and Institutional (Mis-)Fit"
at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, in Berlin, 7-8 March 2013
(see homepage: www.ihdp.unu.edu/article/read/symposium-on-scale-in-environmental-governance-power-reconfiguration).
Cerpa presented a poster on "Environmental Protection Mechanisms in Tanzania:
Unpacking the National Perspective".
Please find the poster below.


(click poster to enlarge)





Recount of the Final Workshop in Sikunga

November, 21st

On Sunday the 21st October Huon Morton and Dirk Röttgers of the CERPA team conducted a closing workshop with Conservancy Management, Regional Traditional Authorities, and Area Representatives in Sikunga Conservancy. The aim of the meeting was to outline the team’s activities over the preceding 6 weeks, provide a brief overview of preliminary insights from the data gathering stage, and discuss a possible program for the protection and regeneration of local forests.

Following the warm welcome and customary opening Prayer, Dirk began explaining what the team had accomplished during their time in Sikunga. Explaining in detail the reasons we visited some villages more than others, the number of households we visited in each village, and reinforcing that participants received small monetary rewards for their performance in the common pool resources game. This last point was particularly important given our plans for future research in the region and the concerns of our partner organizations.

Moving to our preliminary insights, Dirk outlined the initial observation that, contrary to current research literature, an increase in formal enforcement appeared to be an effective strategy to prevent overexploitation of the ecosystem. Preliminary results show that the only enforcement method evoking a strong reaction from participants in the field experiments was an increase in likelihood to be punished. Accordingly the team urged decision makers to stay on course with strengthening law enforcement for the fishery commons, which had been implemented in the last year. The team further advised conservancy management and traditional authorities to apply the same line of thought to forest and wildlife resources.

With minimal time to enter and analyze data, quantitative results were not yet available, and this was made clear to all meeting attendees. However, Huon Morton, having read the results of every survey, was able to provide an impression of what the data was implying. Firstly the issue of the wealth gap between rich and poor, and the development opportunities for different villages was discussed. In particular villages that are located further from the main road have less job opportunities and are more dependent on natural resources than villages which are located closer to the main street. This gap makes ‘one-size-fits-all’ policies particularly difficult to implement, and consideration must be given as to how to limit the impacts on particularly poor and vulnerable households in the conservancy.

Next Huon reiterated the well-known issue of overfishing. Overfishing is an issue that has long been acknowledged, but with no clear action plan, the situation has become more aggravated, and is likely to severely impact many villagers in the near future. While overfishing was seen as almost ‘too late’ to remedy, the main issue visible throughout the conservancy, the alarming rate of deforestation is still able to be curtailed. The chief elder acknowledged that he remembers a time when the region which is mainly plains today was covered in forest and bush during his childhood and youth. High rates of tree cutting combined with little to no tree planting, as evidenced by survey results, support the elder’s claim of drastic change in the area. Huon and Dirk emphasized how deforestation affects not only future logging, but also water management, wildlife and soil fertility, among other things.

Having gained the acknowledgement from the group that deforestation was a pressing issue, Dirk led a discussion in possible enforcement strategies to limit the over-extraction of firewood and the replenishment of timber and firewood stocks. The enforcement strategy focused on an extension of existing licensing systems within the conservancy, and enabled fees raised from selling licenses to be used to establish tree nurseries. Payment for licenses to harvest firewood could be paid for with money or with a number of days working in the tree nurseries, thus limiting the impact on poorer households. The proposal led to robust debate and suggestions that both Dirk and Huon would need to consider when conducting their analysis.

The meeting was concluded with a heartfelt exchange of gratitude and appreciation for the work and support of all involved in conducting, participating or organizing the research. As this was the second time Hannover University has conducted research in Sikunga, the Chief of the Traditional Authority expressed his enthusiasm for the researchers’ deep understanding of the problems as well as challenges facing his community and looks forward to continuing our fruitful partnership.

As tradition dictates, the meeting was concluded with a closing prayer.

CERPA at Tropentag Conference, September 19-21 2012, Göttingen

October, 11th


The CERPA Project presented a poster on "International Market-Based Instruments and the Protection of Ecosystems in Tanzania: Potentials and Pitfalls" (Till Stellmacher, Dirk Röttgers, Etti Winter, Ulrike Grote) at the Tropentag 2012 in Göttingen


(click poster to enlarge)




News from the „CERPA – Certification of Protected Areas“ project – Consideration of uncertainty of ecosystem services

Within the CERPA project Matthias Beyer analyses the importance of flooding seasons for the project site and the surrounding region. Read a progress report here (German).

CERPA in the FONA Newsletter

Befragung von Naturschutzexperten in Tanzania

" Das FONA-Projekt „Internationale Märkte für zertifizierte Schutzleistungen“ (CERPA) am Institut für Umweltökonomik und Welthandel (IUW, Universität Hannover) untersucht Möglichkeiten zur Konzeptionierung eines marktbasierten Systems für zertifizierte Schutzleistungen am Beispiel von Naturschutzgebieten in Afrika.

CERPA Forscher haben nun in Tansania Befragungen mit Naturschutzexperten in nationalen Behörden und NGOs durchgeführt. Ziel der Befragungen war es, Handlungsempfehlungen für den Aufbau internationaler Märkte für zertifizierte Schutzleistungen zu entwickeln.

Die Ergebnisse der Studie zeigen, dass Schutzzonen-Zertifikate vor allem zur Verbesserung der Lebensbedingungen der lokalen Bevölkerung beitragen und Finanzierungsmöglichkeiten für NGOs darstellen sollten. Als problematisch wird der zu erwartende organisatorische Aufwand durch die Zertifizierung sowie hohe Kosten durch externe Berater genannt.

Schutzzonen-Zertifikate sollten sich daher auf den Erhalt von Ökosytemleistungen beziehen, die für die lokale Bevölkerung von großem direktem Nutzen sind, wie etwa Feuerholz oder sauberes Wasser. Die Mehrkosten für den Anbieter sollten bewusst gering gehalten werden. Hierbei kann auf Erfahrungen aus der Waldflächen-Zertifizierung in Entwicklungsländern zurückgegriffen werden.

Mehr Informationen unter: http://www.cerpa.uni-hannover.de


Dr. Till Stellmacher, Wissenschaftler am IUW

Neuigkeiten aus dem Projekt „CERPA – Certification of Protected Areas“ – Betrachtung der Unsicherheit in Ökosystemdienstleistungen

Matthias Beyer, Institut für Wasserwirtschaft, Hydrologie und landwirtschaftlichen Wasserbau, Leibniz Universität Hannover. Im Forschungsprojekt CERPA wird die Umsetzbarkeit eines marktbasierten Instrumentes zur Zertifizierung von Schutzgebieten am Beispiel von Feuchtgebieten von internationaler Bedeutung untersucht. Es soll dabei ein System entwickelt werden, das an dem momentan implementierten Markt für Emissionszertifikate angelehnt ist, jedoch geographisch abgegrenzte Gebiete betrachtet und bewertet. Bei einer Zertifizierung dieser Gebiete würden die Erlöse aus dem Verkauf der Zertifikate für Investitionen in eine nachhaltige Entwicklung der Schutzgebiete verwendet werden. Die Summe dieser Ökosystemdienstleistungen gibt einen wichtigen Anhaltspunkt für den späteren Wert des Zertifikats. Mit Hilfe eines hydrologischen Modells wird ein Ansatz entwickelt, um die Unsicherheit in der Größenordnung von Ökosystemleistungen (ÖS) zu quantifizieren. Aufgrund der starken Verbindung von Hydrologie und ÖS eignet sich ein solches Modell. Darüber hinaus werden Szenarien für zukünftige Entwicklungen in das hydrologische Modell einbezogen, um Prognosen für die Entwicklung der Ökosystemdienstleistungen in der Zukunft abzuschätzen. Dieser Ansatz ermöglicht es, Unsicherheitsbereiche zu definieren und damit auch in der ökonomischen Bewertung der ÖS zu berücksichtigen. Für nähere Informationen: www.cerpa.uni-hannover.de

Berlin Conference on the Human dimensions of global environmental change: "Evidence for Sustainable Development" , Berlin 5./6.10. 2012

Im Rahmen der internationalen Berlin Konferenz hält das CERPA Team drei Vorträge zum Thema „Global Environmental Governance“ die mit folgenden Titeln vertreten sind:

1. “Environmental protection instruments in Tanzania: the national decision-maker’s perspective”

2. “Using Experimental Economics for Developing a Standard for Green Development Areas (GDAs)“

3. „Why cooperate? The incentives of private companies to invest in protected area certificates: A strategic game approach“


Für nähere Informationen: http://www.berlinconference.org/2012/ "

Field research Caprivi, Namibia, September 2012

July 11th 2012

The CERPA team plans supplemental field research in the Caprivi, Namibia. We will carry out field experiments touching upon previously discovered problems.  Following the seminal work of Ostrom and others, we will explore community interaction in face of environmental problems like deforestation and overfishing using participatory common pool resource experiments. We expect new insights into the behavior of local stakeholders and their decision making process as well as established informal institutions. Moreover the results from experiments conducted on this field trip will form the basis for a computer simulation using Agent Based Modelling: The Agent Based Model will allow us to create a 'virual laboratory' where we can simulate decisions from the villagers in Sikunga under different environment and economic conditions. The outcome of these 'virtual experiments' will enable us to better understand the impact of the villagers land-use decisions in the medium and long-term.

Green Development Initiative (GDI) Expert Meeting Sao Paulo, March 25-27, 2012

July 11th 2012

The intention of the meeting was to facilitate modalities for resource mobilization from the private sector for launching the GDIs BioArea pilots. Key issues were the feasibility of the business case for BioAreas and potential links to other initiatives sharing a common goal. Keynote presentations, invited interventions from the participants, and working group discussions reflect the pioneering character of these newly developing initiatives. The controversial debate stressed strategic considerations whether to start small or be linked to international bodies namely the CBD or UNEP.

CERPA at TEEB 2012 in Leipzig

March 23rd 2012

The CERPA team organized a panel session and presented its work at the International TEEB Conference in Leipzig, March 19-22, 2012 (see TEEB Homepage). The panel session brought together DR. Julien Fennessy, Director of CERPA's main Namibian partner, the Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF), Dr. Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst, Head of Division of International Nature Conservation, German Federal Agency of Nature Conservation (BfN), Till Stoll, project developer of the Green Development Initiative (GDI), and Prof. Ulrike Grote, Director of the Institute for Environmental Economics and World Trade, University Hannover. In this combination or experts representing implementation, policy making, concept development and research, challanges and opportunities of innovative market-based certification schemes, the GDI in particular, were discussed together with the audience. The session was moderated by CERPA's Dr. Till Stellmacher. (Abstracts: Julien Fennessy, Bettine Hedden-Dunkhorst, Till Stoll, Ulrike Grote, Till Stellmacher)

In a session on participatory valuation of ecosystem services Dirk Röttgers presented first results from Namibian field work. The session highlighted the particular constraints of participation and put European research in contrast to research on participatory methods in developing countries. CERPA's work represented one of the relatively few efforts concerning developing countries at the conference. (Click here for the presentation)



CERPA at Tropentag 2011 in Bonn

March 14th 2012

The CERPA-team presented the project's work on the Tropentag 2011. Among presentations were Anna Segerstedt's and Dirk Röttgers's work on the Efficiency of Market-Based Instruments for Protecting Wetlands in a poster presentation.


(Click poster to enlarge)

CERPA at TEEB Conference in Leipzig, March 19-22, 2012

January 10th 2012

The CERPA research project organizes a coordinated session on: "The Green Development Initiative: new pathway for financing biodiversity conservation in developing countries?" at the Conference of The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity.

The session will bring together experts from practice and research from Europe and Africa. It aims to identify the most critical challenges in developing and implementing a GDI financing mechanism and to discuss possible solutions in this regard.
The session will consist of 4 oral presentations. Each one will be not longer than 10 minutes plus 5 minutes for questions directly related to the presentations. Time limitations will be strictly enforced. Thereafter, 30 minutes will be available for open discussion with the audience.

The workshop will follow a global-to- local approach. The first presentation by Till Stoll, Earthmind, Switzerland, will introduce the background and core concept of GDI with regard to its future prospects and challenges to contribute to finance biodiversity conservation in developing countries. Thereafter Prof. Dr. Ulrike Grote, University of Hannover, will critically discuss voluntary certification schemes for protected ecosystems. Thereafter Dr. Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst, Federal German Agency for Natural Conservation, Bonn, will discuss science-policy-implementation interfaces to develop innovative financing mechanisms for conservation. In the last talk Dr. Julian Fennessy, Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF), will present practical experiences and contextual constrains to finance biodiversity conservation in the Namibian case.

The session will be in many ways relevant for policy and decision-makers at different levels. It will help identifying and understanding lessons learned and future challenges for the d evelopment of practical concepts to finance biodiversity conservation with a focus on their applicability and robustness in developing countries’ contexts.

Certification of Protected Areas and Ecosystem Services: CERPA

December 21st 2011

Description and approach of the project

CERPA is a research project conducted by Hannover University, Germany, and the Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF) with the goal of evaluating the practicability of new market-based instruments for biodiversity conservation. In October the CERPA research team from Hannover University visited the Eastern Caprivi that was chosen as a pilot study area. The figure below shows a map of the Eastern Caprivi which is bordered by the rivers Zambezi, Kwando, Linyanti and Chobe and the Angolan border.


More Information can be found here

News from the Hydrology Team

 December 21st 2011

The first phase of data gathering and analyzing the hydrological system of the wetlands and floodplains in the Caprivi, Namibia, has been finished. A picture of the unique behavior of the floodplain and wetland systems in the area could be drawn and important ecosystem services related to water could be identified. 

More information can be found here.

CERPA starts empirical research in Tanzania

September 21th 2011 

In June 2011 the CERPA project team started its research activities in Tanzania. The work was undertaken in cooperation with the Environment for Development - Tanzania (EfDT) Programme hosted by the Department of Economics, University of Dar es Salaam.

More Information can be found here





CERPA team visits study site in Namibia

August 12th 2011

In June 2011 part of the CERPA team visited Namibia. During a workshop hosted by the Namibia Nature Foundation (NNF), innovative concepts of market based instruments for nature conservation and sustainable development were discussed with Namibian experts and stakeholders. Together with partners from NNF, the CERPA team visited the project study sites in the Caprivi to prepare future field research employing experimental economics.

More information can be found here.



Vilm-Workshop: Policy Brief

August 8th 2011

The international workshop on Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) took place between 13.-16. December 2010 at the International Nature Conservation Academy at the isle of Vilm and was organized by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN), CBD Secretariat, Institute of Environmental Economics and World Trade (IUW) at the University of Hannover and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ). The accompanying Policy Brief covers the outcomes of discussions and highlights critical issues and challenges towards development and implementation of PES schemes.

Press release: New research project of the Leibniz University of Hannover analyzes market systems for environmental protection services

February 24th 2011

An interdisciplinary research team of the Leibniz University of Hannover will analyze the concepts of market-based international financing systems for environmental protection in developing countries in the coming three years.

more (German)

International workshop "Payments for Ecosystem Services - Towards an Implementation Strategy" - December 13-16 2010, Vilm

December 19th 2010

Together with BfN the CERPA team at IUW organized an international expert workshop concerned with implementation strategies of payments for ecosystem services. The workshop took place at the International Nature Conservation Academy on the isle of Vilm between December 13th and 16th 2010.
Workshop proceedings and expert presentations can be found here.

The conference participants:

More information can be found here.