Potential indicators to assess the sustainability of South American forests under silvopastoral management. Case study of an old Roble forest in Chile’s Andes.

Medina, María Gabriela; Dube, Francis; Udawatta, Ranjith; Jose, Shibu

Keywords: sustainability, nothofagus obliqua, agroforestry systems, participatory research, Methodological triangulation


A research was carried out to create a set of preliminary indicators that have the potential to identify sustainability trends, associated risks, and facilitate decision-making for management of native forest ecosystems under silvopastoral conditions. The "Ranchillo Alto" property, with its old roble groves under silvopastoral management, served as a case study. Ranchillo Alto is part of Yungay community, Ñuble Region, Chile. The methodology involved methodological triangulation (bibliography-experts-community). Overall, 244 indicators were obtained, and 50 of those showed most potential to measure sustainability. Of these, 22 constitute the most decisive, divided into 3, 9 and 10 indicators for the economic, environmental and social dimensions, respectively. The remaining 28 indicators were classified as optional or complementary to the evaluation, depending on the needs of the context under study. Combining several methods helped to simplify information, strengthen the validity of results, and reduce biases within the methodological framework. Though the initial group of indicators is suitable for assessing sustainability, further analysis of their usefulness, relevance, ease of measurement, and representativeness of the reality of participating communities is needed. Such analysis will synthesize information and help move toward a solid number of 4th generation indicators that provide reliable data on sustainability and the potential of silvopastoralism to achieve it.

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Editorial: Springer Netherlands
Fecha de publicación: 2020
Idioma: English
Notas: Full peer-review (4 reviewers) process