Successful examples of strategies that motivate farmers for the large-scale execution of soil and water conservation (SWC) practices are scarce. This paper presents a promising strategy for changing mostly passive Bolivian Andes farmers into active participators in natural resources conservation. In this logical strategy, first a solid foundation is laid of intrinsically motivated and genuinely participating villagers with a progress-driven attitude. Next, SWC activities are planned and executed within a holistic framework of rural development activities. Collaboration and the use of farmer-trainers enhance sustainability of all activities. Major emphasis is given to the human dimension of sustainable development as well as to six important fundamentals for working with farmers in SWC. Practical experiences with the logical strategy in five rural villages show its potential to motivate farmers for SWC practices and achieve sustainable changes. This paper therefore calls for harmonized rural development policies that support strategies focussing on farmer motivation and truly integrated sustainable development.
- participatory development