Madzuu is a village in Kenyas western highlands and Lake Victoria basin where the rainfall is abundant, and there is some access to urban markets. And yet about 61 percent of the village population earned less than 50 cents a day in real terms in both 1989 and 2002. Many people there are trapped in chronic poverty from which escape is difficult.
Alice Pell and her Nairobi collaborators, Louis Verchot of the International Centre for Research in Agroforestry (left) and David Mbugua, Cornell Ph.D. Õ03, are studying how small changes in natural resources could have profound effects on the lives of poor villagers. Cornell News Service phto by David BrandCopyright © Cornell University
Alice Pell, professor of animal science at Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., is the principal investigator on a five-year, multidisciplinary research effort to study how small changes in natural resources could have profound effects on peoples lives. In Madzuus case, restoring the lands natural productivity could alter the economic situation of the farmers.
Pell reported on the research teams first year of work today (Feb. 14) at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Seattle. Her talk, "The Interplay Between Small Farms and Fragile Tropical Ecosystems in Kenya," was part of the "Frontiers in Biocomplexity Science" portion of the "Connections in the Real World" symposium.
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