|Jittin and Karen villagers in Ban Khao Lek.|
In late 2006, ECN began a socio-economic survey with the help of Dr Napat Sirisamphand, a retired researcher from the Chulalongkorn Social Research Institute. Using focus group meetings, questionnaires and interviews, the ECN team conducted surveys in selected villages around Salakpra to get a better understanding of the lives and livelihoods of those who suffer from crop-raiding and those who have, or have had, an impact on the forest ecosystem.
|Veterans with invaluable insights|
In time, this data will also allow us to measure the impact of project interventions such as crop protection measures, ecotourism initiatives or alternative income options. We need to know whether our efforts to mitigate human-elephant conflict are making a difference in economic terms, and whether local attitudes and behaviours have become more supportive of elephants, forest conservation and sustainable natural resource use.