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Strengthening 'folk ecology': community-based learning for integrated soil fertility management, western Kenya

Authors
  • Ramisch, J.J.
  • Misiko, M.
  • Ekise, I.E.
  • Mukalama, J.B.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2006
Source
Wageningen University and Researchcenter Publications
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown
External links

Abstract

Farmers and researchers in western Kenya have used community-based learning approaches to jointly develop a `dynamic expertise¿ of integrated soil fertility management (ISFM). This transformative learning approach builds on farmers' `folk ecology¿ and outsiders' knowledge, taking action research on natural resource management beyond methods that are descriptive (ethnopedology) or curriculum-driven (farmer field schools). The paper presents insights from a project's experience of applying the strengthening `folk ecology¿ approach in western Kenya, with emphasis on the community-based learning process, collective and individual experimentation, the power dynamics of farmer research groups, and learning from the farmer¿researcher interface. Farmer groups have been empowered by this approach but diversification into non-soil activities highlights the limitations of experimentation and the challenges of scaling up participatory action research

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