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The Natural Resource Degradation and Vulnerability Nexus:


This report was prepared by an Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) team co-led by Lauren Kelly and Bekele A. Shiferaw and comprising Harsh Anuj, Joy Kaarina Butscher, Alexandra Chris­tina Horst, Doruk Yarin Kiroglu, Chikako Miwa, and Mees Daniel van der Werf. Jozef Leonardus Vaessen and Estelle Rosine Raimondo provided valuable methodological contributions. Romayne D. Pereira and Vibhuti Narang Khanna provided excellent program assistant support, and Aarre Laakso provided structural editing. All names of team members are included in alphabetical order.

The evaluation was conducted under the guidance and supervision of Marialisa Motta, manager; José Cándido Carbajo Martinez, director; and Alison M. Evans, Director-General, Evaluation.

This evaluation commissioned several expert background papers, including “Review of World Bank Ecological Management/Restoration Projects in Support of the Great Green Wall Initiative,” which was conducted by Matthew Turner, professor of geography, University of Wisconsin–Madison, with a team of researcher associates including Tanya Carney, Laura Lawler, Jules Reynolds, and Molly Teague. A background paper on small-scale fisheries was produced in collaboration with Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions by a team that included John Virdin, director of the Ocean and Coastal Policy Program; Xavier Basurto, associate professor of sustainability science; and Colyer Woolston, research associate. Maria Fernández-Giménez, professor of rangeland ecology and management, Colorado State University, provided an evidence compendium, “Key Issues Affecting Rangeland Health, Herder Livelihoods and Well-Being in Rural Mongolia and Evidence of Successful Development Interventions.” A structured literature review on sustainable land management was conducted by Randall Bluffstone, director of the Institute for Economics and the Environment, Portland State University, and Laura Costadone, research associate. The structured literature reviews on groundwater and small-scale fisheries were done by Siwa Msangi, IEG consultant.

IEG thanks the many World Bank country office staff and client government staff who helped facilitate the conduct of the case studies. The case analysis of the Cerrado, Brazil, was led by Lauren Kelly and John Redwood III, senior IEG consultant, with support from Donald Sawyer, senior IEG consultant, and Mariana Branco, extended-term consultant. Bekele A. Shiferaw led the work on the Ethiopia case study with Ebru Karamete, evaluation analyst, with support from local consultants Asmare Wubet, Daniel Jaleta, Gebrekidan Worku, Girma Berhe, Menasbo Gebru, and Selamawit Damtew. The Mongolian case analysis was led by Joy Kaarina Butscher with support from IEG consultants Mees Daniel van der Werf, Batbuyan Batjav, and Tungalag Ulambayar. The Niger case study was conducted by Lauren Kelly and Joy Kaarina Butscher, with support from Leif Brottem, assistant professor, Grinnell College, and Adamou Kalilou Amadou, Manzo Rio-Rio Aminou, Omar Moumouni, and Oumou Moumouni, consultants; Raul Roman, executive director, Dawning; Rafe H. Andrews, assistant director, Dawning; Nick Parisse, director of photography, Dawning; and Christian Freymeyer, researcher. Bekele A. Shiferaw led the work on groundwater in India, with Mr. V. Ratna Reddy, director of the Livelihoods and Natural Resource Management Institute, and Mr. Bharat Sharma, scientist emeritus, International Water Management Institute, India. IEG partnered with the World Bank’s Development Economics Vice Presidency, including Daniel A. Ali, senior economist, and Daniel C. Monchuk, development economics consultant, for analysis of geospatial data for the Ethiopia case study.

A special thank you is extended to our esteemed peer reviewers: Arun Agrawal, professor at the School for Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan, and Sara Scherr, founder and president of EcoAgriculture Partners and cofounder of the Landscapes for People, Food and Nature Initiative.