Devolution: A mechanism for scaling adoption of sustainable land management in Eastern Africa highlands.
Sustainable Land Management (SLM) technologies are known to improve food production and productivity in areas prone to high soil degradation, arising from water and soil nutrient losses. In eastern Africa, mechanisms for mitigation of this land degradation have been developed, but their uptake has been minimal. Devolution, a mechanism known to entrust communities with decision making tools and powers to plan, implement and monitor activities was tested in the highlands of eastern Africa. Generation of consensus on how to implement the scaling of adoption of SLM innovations is a crucial aspect for evaluating the devolution process. Assignment of clear roles and responsibilities facilitated involvement of multi-displinary stakeholders in managing the process of scaling sustainable land management innovations. At district level, officials appreciated the intervention, streamlined activities in their work plans leading to increased budgets for natural resource management which resulted into increased adoption of SLM technologies. Farmers were able to express their land management needs and give direction to operations through priotising interventions (trenches, contour bunds and agroforestry) key to their area and facilitated dissemination of SLM technologies.
Key Words: Decision support tools, land degradation