Keywords: adaptive management, ecoregional approach, operational methodology, social learning, Vietnam
New partnership mechanisms for integrated natural resource management: the Red River Basin (Vietnam) pilot region for operational ecoregional approach
The Red River Basin (RRB) in Vietnam was selected in 1997 as the first ecoregional pilot site of the Ecoregional Initiative for the Humid and Subhumid Tropics of Asia (EcoR(I)-Asia) as it encapsulates many of the problems and issues commonly found in the Asian tropics, associated with the demands and pressures of rapidly increasing population and rapid economic development on the natural resource base and raising concerns of sustainability. The RRB ecoregional project aims at developing an operational model for a multi-scale, integrated approach to natural resource management (NRM) that would help to overcome the shortcomings of traditional R&D approaches and organisations in tackling complex and inter-related NRM issues. The process of building up a common vision of NRM issues and setting up new partnership mechanisms within a holistic framework is documented. Lessons are drawn from this experience, that will be further applied to new pilot sites in Southeast Asia in an adaptive social learning mode in order to validate and then extrapolate the operational methodology to larger geographic domains and finally to the whole ecoregion under the mandate of EcoR(I)-Asia.