Emerging technologies and shifting paradigms for community-based tropical forest monitoring

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


Remote sensing and community-based approaches for forest monitoring have been growing noticeably in recent years. However, integrated platforms for tropical forest monitoring are still scarce. This study describes an integrated community based tropical forest monitoring system which combines emerging technologies, remote sensing and community-based observation in support of REDD+ monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) implementation. The development of this research is driven by three specific research questions: 1) how can information and communication technologies (ICT) support the automation of the community data collection process for monitoring forest change activities using modern handheld devices? 2) what is the accuracy and compatibility of community collected data compared to other data (e.g. optical remote sensing and expert field measurements) for quantifying forest changes? and 3) what is a suitable design for an interactive remote sensing and community-based near real-time forest change monitoring system and how can such a system be operationalized? The system is developed using open source technologies and has been implemented together with local experts in UNESCO Kafa Biosphere Reserve, Ethiopia. The result shows that the system has been able to empower local community, public institutions and civil society with the information which lead to better manage and conserve forest landscapes. The methods presented in this research are applicable to a broader geographic scope. Hence, this study emphasizes that the policies and incentives should be implemented to empower communities and to create institutional frameworks for community-based forest monitoring in the tropics.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2016
EventEO Open Science 2016 Conference - ESA-ESRIN, Frascati, Italy
Duration: 12 Sept 201614 Sept 2016


ConferenceEO Open Science 2016 Conference


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