Study on personal profile of members in biodiversity management committees of Kerala
S. Chithra, R.S. Jiji, R. Senthilkumar, Anu George and G. Radhika
This is a study of the personal profile of members in Biodiversity Management Committees (BMCs), functioning under selected local self-governments of Kerala. BMCs constitute the grass root level institutional machinery for decentralized biodiversity governance. Five BMCs each from six districts, two each from the northern, central, and southern zones were selected purposively based on key informant technique. The selection of districts was based on criteria viz. indigenous cattle population, documentary evidence on native livestock of conservation value and expert guidance by subject matter specialists. Data regarding personal attributes of two hundred and forty members, eight each from thirty selected BMCs, procured through e-surveys and telephonic interviews were analyzed statistically. Results indicated dismal representation of women (37.08 per cent) as well as youth (21.25 per cent) in the committees. Another significant finding was the prevalence of political/ social workers among BMC members (61.66 per cent).The representation of stakeholder communities including those of farming, livestock and fisheries was minimal (17.08 per cent), whereas there was absolute absence of traditional knowledge holders and practitioners of indigenous medicine. Graduates and postgraduates together constituted nearly half of the respondents. All the members reported a working experience of five years in BMCs. The findings regarding training exposure in biodiversity management among BMC members revealed that a vast majority received not more than one training (79.58 per cent). Only a few had attended two or three training programmes (16.25 per cent).The Awards/recognitions received by individual members in biodiversity management was minimal (0.42 per cent), whereas at organizational level, 43.33 per cent of BMCs received only one and 3.33 per cent received more than one awards.
Keywords: Biodiversity management committees (BMCs), personal profile, biological diversity act