Using Agent-Based Modelling to Assess Scenarios for Enhanced Soil and Water Conservation in the Boset District, Ethiopia

Samuel Assefa*, Aad Kessler, Luuk Fleskens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The sustainability of the ongoing Campaign-Based Watershed Management (CBWM) program in Ethiopia is questionable due to poor planning and implementation of the Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) structures. This study uses an empirically based, agent-based model to explore the effect of six scenarios on both area of land covered by, as well as the quality of SWC structures in three Kebeles (villages) of Boset District. The analysis revealed that integrating multiple interventions enhanced SWC most in all Kebeles. Furthermore, increasing the commitment of local government through capacity building generated most effect and yet required the lowest investment. Motivating farmers, introducing alternative livelihood opportunities and establishing and strengthening micro-watershed associations had limited, but differential influence on the outcomes across the Kebeles. However, all alternative scenarios had some added value compared to doing business as usual. Hence, in order to enhance the outcomes and sustainability of the ongoing CBWM program in the study area and other similar localities, it is crucial to pay much more attention to increasing the commitment of local government actors through capacity building. This empowers local government actors to (1) plan and more efficiently implement the program in consultation with other local actors, and (2) integrate locally sensitive need-based adaptation of the program.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8
JournalJournal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2021

Keywords

  • Ethiopia
  • Farmers
  • Scenario Analysis
  • Social Simulation
  • Soil and Water Conservation

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