Takasaki, Y., O.T. Coomes and C. Abizaid. 2021. "COVID-19 among rural peoples in the Peruvian Amazon: Policy brief
". Peruvian Amazon Rural Livelihoods and Poverty (PARLAP) Project, University of Tokyo, Japan. DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.4683344
Abizaid, C., O.T. Coomes and Y. Takasaki. 2021. “Lifeways and currents of change in the Peruvian Amazon: A 1000 km boat journey down the Ucayali River” (under review)
Coomes, O.T., Y. Cheng, T. Takasak and C. Abizaid. 2021. "What drives clearing of upland primary forest over secondary forests in tropical shifting cultivation systems? Evidence from the Peruvian Amazon (under review)
Coomes, O.T., M. Kalacska, Y. Takasaki, C. Abizaid and T. Grupp. 2021. "Smallholder agriculture results in stable forest cover in riverine Amazonia (under review)
Coomes, O.T., S. Rivas Panduro, Y. Takasaki and C. Abizaid. 2021. "Geolocation of unpublished archaeological sites in the Peruvian Amazon" (under review)
Coomes, O.T., Y. Takasaki and C. Abizaid. 2021. "Remote sensing corroborates local ecological knowledge about tropical forest and aquatic species at landscape scales" (manuscript)
Coomes, O.T., Y. Takasaki, and C. Abizaid. 2021. “Regional product and wage markets in Amazonia: spatial structure, integration and rural terms of trade in Peru” (in prep.)
Noritomo, Y. 2021. “Research site selection bias: Evidence from the Peruvian Amazon”, M.A. thesis, University of Tokyo, 88 pp.
Langill, J. 2018. "Differential experienced of climate change: Local knowledge and perspectives of severe flooding in the Peruvian Amazon
", M.A. thesis, University of Toronto, 153 pp.
In the context of rapid climate change, the frequency and magnitude of environmental hazards in Amazonia are continually increasing. This study seeks to understand the lived realities of environmental hazards in the Peruvian Amazon, and in particular flooding, and how experiences are shaped by differential positionalities. The study draws upon data from the Peruvian Amazon Rural Livelihoods and Poverty Project community survey (n=919) and household survey (n=3,941), as well as interview (n=24) and survey (n=25) data collected during fieldwork in Éxito, a riverine village in the Department of Ucayali, Peru. The research findings indicate that flooding experience is highly determined by intersecting lines of difference at the individual, household and village levels; that fishing occupies several related yet contested roles within the village; and that given the positive and negative implications identified of four key flood types, we need to reconsider how we define environmental hazard in the Amazonian context.
Girard, D. A. 2018. “Does the provision of public goods influence biodiversity? A study of Peruvian Amazon communities” B.Sc. Honours thesis, McGill University, 48 pp.
This paper explores the relationship between education, healthcare and biodiversity in rural communities of the Peruvian Amazon. We used survey data from the Peruvian Amazon Rural Livelihoods and Poverty (PARLAP) project, a large-scale study of communities in the Ucayali and Loreto regions of Peru. We studied correlations using multiple regression to assess the community-level impacts of healthcare and education on the abundance, yields and quality of game, fish and timber species. Our results indicated that communities with a secondary school had higher expected fish catches, as well as a greater proportion of high quality fish species, while communities with healthcare had lower rates of expected fish catch. There were no statistically significant correlations with timber or game species. An analysis of the Peruvian context shows that it is possible that the correlation is not a function of healthcare being detrimental to fish stocks, but rather that the concentration of institutions in a few communities is putting additional pressure on locally available resources. If that is the case, Peru’s objective of universal healthcare could help alleviate the pressure on fish species. The sensitivity of fish to changes in consumptive behaviours, as well as their historic neglect in conservation initiatives (Castello et al., 2014) warrants them special attention from here on out. As development occurs, with increased provision of healthcare and education in rural areas, we need to know what the associated effects will be, in order to design well-adapted conservation and development policies rather than promote rural development at the expense of nature.
Garber, P.E. 2018. ““Pobretología” of the Periphery: The Spatial Distribution and Determinants of Community Welfare in the Peruvian Amazon”, B.A. Honours Thesis, McGill University, 45 pp.
This study incorporates GIS and linear regression modeling techniques in order to elucidate the spatial distribution and determinants of community welfare in the Peruvian Amazon. In total, 906 communities comprise the research sample, while the Amazon, Napo, Pastaza, and Ucayali sub-basins represent the geographical extent of the study. To fully capture the aspects of welfare and poverty in this region, a comprehensive community welfare index served as an indicator of each community’s well-being. Accordingly, this analysis aims to glean results that could inform a geographically targeted poverty alleviation program in the study area. Visual results from the community welfare map and statistical results from the regression model indicate that lower-welfare, indigenous communities predominantly inhabit the more remote Napo and Pastaza sub-basins. From a policy perspective, the regression revealed the importance of market access and participation in determining community welfare, indicating that effective programs could focus on these features. However, consulting with the communities targeted for assistance programs constitutes an essential component of any subsequent strategy, helping to ensure that equitable outcomes flow from their effort.
Bryson, L.C. 2017.
“Spatial patterns of natural resource depletion among rain forest communities in the Peruvian Amazon: the role of protected areas and indigenous territories in the conservation of key species
”, M.Sc thesis, University of Toronto, 78 pp.
Human-induced environmental change is not a new phenomenon in biologically rich areas of western Amazonia. Rain forest communities have long modified their environments, pursuing a diverse portfolio of economic activities for subsistence and income generation. Globally, protected areas (PAs) are the chief conservation strategy. While the effectiveness of different PA models continues to be debated, recent research acknowledges the significance of extractive PAs and indigenous territories to the conservation of biodiversity in human-modified landscapes. Using community census data collected from rain forest communities in the data poor region of the Peruvian Amazon (n=919), spatial clustering and regression analyses are applied to evaluate the effect of proximity to extractive PAs and indigenous territories on relative availability of key species. Controlling for important environmental, market, and community characteristics, our research indicates that extractive PAs and indigenous territories have helped to preserve the availability of key species by certain measures that we isolate in the work.
Shaul, D. and C. Abizaid. 2016. “Soccer, seed, and labour exchange networks in the Napo basin, Peru”, Summary report, University of Toronto, 159 pp.
Sanchez, L. and C. Abizaid. 2016. “Environmental shock exposure in the Peruvian Amazon”, Summary Report, University of Toronto, 39 pp.
Donohue, L. 2015.
“Resilience and vulnerability of river-side communities to environmental shocks in Loreto and Ucayali regions, Peruvian Amazon”, B.Sc. Honours thesis, McGill University, 68 pp.
Amazonian rivers provide significant opportunities for floodplain agriculture but also bring destructive floods, cause river bank slumps, and force communities to relocate. This thesis aims to assess the resilience and vulnerability of river-side communities to environmental shocks in the Regions of Loreto and Ucayali of eastern Peru. Using data from the Peruvian Amazon Rural Livelihoods and Poverty Project (PARLAP), this study applies multivariate statistical techniques and mapping to identify patterns in community vulnerability among 919 communities along four Amazonian rivers. I find that riverbank slumping is a greater threat to community stability than large floods, and that the most vulnerable communities are those located in the floodplains without complementary access to land in the upland, often relocating to riskier locations. Sub-regional heterogeneity in environmental shocks and community stability is considerable, and initiatives aimed at reducing rural poverty must consider this variation in adapting strategies to the specific locales they target.
Donohue, L., and O.T. Coomes. 2014. “Natural resource availability in the Peruvian Amazon: descriptive analyses”, Summary report, McGill University, 164 pp.
Miller, W.N. 2013. “Historical and geographical patterns of human settlement in the Napo River basin, Peruvian Amazon”, BA & BSc Honours thesis, McGill University, 70 pp.
Historical and geographical patterns of human settlement are described using data from a census of all 273 communities in the Napo River basin in the Peruvian Amazon, focusing critically on the determinants of community location. The basin is an underdeveloped and understudied area of highly biodiverse tropical forest with mostly small, resource-poor communities located along the rivers and waterways. Agriculture is the most important economic activity, and has become increasingly more important through time, but it is often not the deciding factor driving settlement decisions. No single dominant motive for settlement can be identified over the history of the basin, and as time progressed, human communities settled for more diverse reasons. A slight trend is noted toward more subsistence-focused activities like agriculture and fishing. In earlier decades, commercial estates were established, and as the riverside became more densely populated, communities “filled in” between extant communities.