Developing markets for watershed protection services and improved livelihoods in India. Discussion paper
The purpose of this study is not to promote the use of market-based approaches in watershed protection services, but to explore the potential and limits of this approach vis-à-vis other existing approaches such as regulation and collective action to see what can best improve the provision of these services and the livelihoods of the poor.
The main objectives of this scoping phase study have thus been:
· To assess the current status and context of watershed protection and development in India in detail and consider the relevance and applicability of markets for watershed protection
services in the country
· To identify and present some of the examples of market-like mechanisms for watershed protection services that already exist in India and have helped to improve the livelihoods of the poor
· To conduct a brief field-based diagnostic of the two states of Himachal Pradesh (HP) and Madhya Pradesh (MP) to study the links between providers, managers and users of watershed protection services in these states and to assess the potential for developing market-based approaches to improve these services and the livelihoods of the poor.
To identify some of the main constraints, knowledge gaps and research needs that need to be considered while developing market-based payment systems for water shed protection services and identify key partners and resource people for the next phase of the study.
This study has considered the potential of developing market-based approaches for watershed protection services at three different levels - micro, meso and macro respectively.