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Community Monitoring and Environmental Data Collection Tools on the agenda


Monitor a territory of approximately 230,000 hectares, inhabited by about 1,500 families, distributed in over 20 communities. This is the challenge currently faced by quilombolas living at the Kalunga Cultural Heritage Historic Site. Some of the Kalunga's biggest concerns are hunting and poaching, misuse of water, and disorderly land use and occupation on its territory.

To help discuss the issue, CEPF Cerrado hosted on July 13, 2017, a meeting to address community monitoring and environmental data collection. To this end, the agronomist and collaborative researcher in Community Management and Monitoring of the Center for Sustainable Development (CDS) of the University of Brasilia, Antônio Oviedo, was invited to present two environmental data collection tools widely used by communities in monitoring their territories.

The event took place at the headquarters of the International Institute of Education in Brasilia and was attended by members of the IEB team as well as some quilombola community leaders from the Kalunga Historic Site. The objective was to start a conversation about community monitoring and its importance for participatory management of territories. Although there are free-use monitoring tools, the meeting focused on analyzing the Open Data Kit (ODK) and Cybertracker tools for participatory environmental data collection that are being used for environmental conservation in various parts of the world.

The group has been aware of some cases in which participatory territory management already benefits from records captured by the communities themselves. Examples analyzed were monitoring of gorilla populations by tribal communities in Congo; tracking animals for hunting in Africa through apps; forest monitoring using apps in Norte Rupununi, Guyana; monitoring pirarucu fishing in the Kaxinawá Indigenous Land and monitoring environmental threats to Resex Chico Mendes, both in Acre; and ICMBio's aquatic monitoring in protected areas in the Amazon.

The quilombola leaders present at the meeting showed interest in the tools presented and shared the desire to submit, for the next CEPF public notice, a participatory monitoring project aimed at territorial management of the Kalunga Cultural Heritage Historic Site.


Ingold, T. (2013). Making: Anthropology, Archeology, Art and Architecture. Routledge, London.
Ingold, T. (2000). The perception of the environment: essays on livelihood, dwelling and skill. London: Routledge.
Liebenberg, L. (1990). The art of tracking: the origin of science. David Philip Publishers.
Oviedo & Bursztyn (2017). Community-based monitoring of small-scale fisheries with digital devices in Brazilian Amazon.
Antonio Oviedo (2017). Community Monitoring (ppt presentation).

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