An International Network on Climate Change Impacts on Small Farmers in the Tropical Andes - Global Conventions from a Local Perspective

  •  Andre Lindner    
  •  Jürgen Pretzsch    


The agricultural sector of Andean countries like Peru and Bolivia perceives the consequences of climate change in increasing water stress due to melting glaciers and changing precipitation patterns. Therefore mainly subsistence agricultural systems are increasingly vulnerable. Traditional inhabitants of the tropical Andean region are aware of the recurrent diversity of climate related impacts and its consequences, thus livelihood strategies are based on principles of risk management. Andean farmers are nowadays applying traditional strategies in a combination of homegrown experimentation and scientific know-how to cope with and adapt to a changing climate. Understanding these adaptations has become one of the most important aspects of research into climate change impacts and vulnerability. It provides essential knowledge for developing and transferring strategies towards a sustainable management in agriculture and agroforestry systems. But there still is a lack of a comparative assessment, especially in regions with high impact of extreme climate conditions. The endogenously determined strategies, which are based on the experience of the farmers, are to be complemented by knowledge and experiences coming from outside farm-household systems and communities. In a collaborative way, this exogenous knowledge is to be placed at the disposal of local actors. The necessary network approach leads to a comprehensive involvement of local stakeholders. Therefore a participative network on climate change may work as a tool to bridge the gap between the global discourse on climate change and local action.

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