In developing countries, effective ecosystem management can bring many benefits to poor communities such as food provision and building a strong green economy through ecotourism. It can also play a vital role in securing those livelihoods by preventing extreme events such as floods. In the Western Himalayas, recent floods in the Uttarakhand region provide an opportunity to better understand the capacity of local communities to respond to extreme events, as well as their general ability to respond to climate change.
This research project examined the link between ecosystem services and resilience to extreme events. In addition, it looked at various stakeholder perceptions of ecosystem services and how this links to the behavioural choices they make in managing ecosystems.
Sina was a PhD student at Goethe University in Frankfurt and has degrees in Geography and Contemporary East Asian studies. Her project, hosted by the University of Cambridge, will focus on the link between ecosystem services and disaster risks in the Western Himalayas and builds on her own research experience with the use of Bayesian networks to assess ecosystem services in oasis towns in China.