Identification and Comparison of Components Influencing Rangeland Exploitation from Pastorals and Experts' Viewpoints Using SWOT and AHP

Authors

1 M.Sc. Student, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan, Iran

4 M.Sc. Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan, Iran

Abstract

Abstract. Over the past decades, range managers have devoted extensive efforts to conserve and restore rangelands and sustain their exploitation but these efforts are more focused on the classic sciences and the exploiters' knowledge and experience have been neglected in the process. Therefore, current study was done to deal with the prioritizing and comparing factors affecting rangeland exploitation based on four criteria involving the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to determine the degree of consistency and difference between the experts and pastorals' viewpoints. To assess the factors affecting rangeland exploitation, SWOT analysis was used. Factors identified using the questionnaire set based on Likert spectrum items and AHP analysis were prioritized and compared by the pastorals and experts. Results of comparing the factors' prioritization showed that three factors including the lack of coordination and trust between experts and pastorals, existence of feudalism in husbandry system, opportunities for revenue expansion from livestock production had the same prioritization from the experts and pastorals' viewpoints. Also, comparisons of weighted mean differences revealed that the factors' regional rangeland potential for forage species planting of strength criteria, salt affected and swampy rangelands with weakness criteria, greater use of the expertized capacity and specialized knowledge and opportunities for revenue expansion from livestock production in the opportunity criteria and dual ownership of the rangelands by pastorals and government in the threat criteria had the highest weighted mean differences. So, it can be inferred that there is a vast gap between pastorals and experts' viewpoints in prioritizing the factors affecting the rangeland exploitation. Results emphasized the importance of pastorals and local communities' knowledge and experience in the rangeland management and their exploitation improvement.

Keywords


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