Theoretical and practical considerations in the development of a methodological framework for evaluating sustainability of low-input ruminant farming systems in developing countries

Tawanda Marandure, Kennedy Dzama, James Bennett, Godswill Makombe, Cletos Mapiye

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Abstract

The sustainability of low-input ruminant farming systems remains poorly understood and evaluation frameworks that adequately capture their complexity are lacking. The multiple goals of producers, multipurpose roles of ruminants, animal welfare issues, credence goods and services of the system are omitted in existing frameworks. In that context, development of a novel comprehensive framework for evaluating the sustainability of the low-put ruminant farming system is important. The current manuscript, therefore, provides an overview of a systemic process for developing a participatory and interdisciplinary methodological framework to measure sustainability of the low-input ruminant farming system. The proposed framework provides guidance on potentially relevant variables and their subcomponents, and for designing appropriate data collection tools, conducting field measurements and analysing results. The suggested framework captures the complex interrelationships within and between dimensions and indicators of sustainability and apply a system dynamics approach to integrate the indicators into an overall measure of the sustainability of a system.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100058
Number of pages11
JournalEnvironmental and Sustainability Indicators
Volume8
Early online date20 Aug 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Aug 2020

Bibliographical note

© 2020 Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Keywords

  • Low-input ruminant farming
  • Sustainability evaluation
  • Multifunctional roles
  • Credence goods and services
  • System dynamics approach

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