Participatory Mapping – Ethiopia

During this evaluation we conducted conduct participatory mapping exercises in approximately 50 gantas in the study area. The two groups of interest for the mapping exercise included herders and scouts. Our goal was to incorporate local knowledge into existing maps of the study area and to enable participants to visualize and explain their resource use. With the help of facilitators, participants will drew their grazing areas during the wet and dry season, migration routes, settlement areas, water points, and important natural landmarks on large format base maps. Once the data collection process was complete, I digitized the maps for analysis and helping to supplement our qualitative and quantitative data collection to help the evaluation team better understand and map out resource use, conflict areas, and mobility routes across the study area.


Globally, the commons (communally managed areas) remain highly vulnerable, with land being allocated for commercial agricultural investment and infrastructure development on a regular basis. In particular this is true of the rangelands, where external interest in land for agriculture—and in its resources for other commercial ventures, such as tourism—has grown. Pastoralists are therefore concerned about the risk of expropriation and fear losing their land due to expropriation by the state, since their migratory and herding patterns may coincide or intersect with land expropriated for commercial purposes (Cotula & Vermeulen 2009). Even the most progressive policies and legislation often fail to provide adequate protection to many rangeland users and, most commonly, to the poorest and least powerful.

The USAID/Ethiopia LAND Project aims to adopt a locally appropriate model to protect the land and resource rights of pastoral communities. The Ethiopia LAND Project proposes an innovative approach to working with customary pastoral communities to increase land and resource tenure security, as well as with regional governments to develop policies and regulations that allow communal land rights to be recognized and certified. LAND represents an original program to strengthen land tenure security among pastoralists through a pilot certification process. As such, it is important to document the impact of the new formalization approach on pastoral communities and households, including the program’s effect on livelihoods, resilience, tenure security, and conflict. This impact evaluation proposes a framework for measuring the key development impacts of the LAND program in the Chifra and Amibara woredas. In particular, this evaluation seeks to assess the outcomes and impacts of interventions that fall under Component 4 of the LAND project, including formal recognition of customary land rights, improving communal land governance, as well as strengthening pastoral communities’ capacity for land use planning and management and investment negotiations.

Afar Impact Evaluation Design Report