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Presentation Poster presentation
Title Geodata-based tools supporting biodiversity research and forest management in Kakamega Forest

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Short title Geodata-based tools for biodiversity research/management

Author(s) Schaab, G.; Asser, B.; Dammann, P.; Huth, K.; Muchori, F.N.; Ojha, N.; Zimmer, H.

Presenting author Schaab, G.

Institution(s) Faculty of Geomatics, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences

Keywords Geospatial data; customization; tools; biodiversity monitoring; forest management

Abstract Within BIOTA East Africa and in particular for Kakamega Forest the interdisciplinary consortium has promised to come up with biodiversity management recommendations at the landscape level as well as to enable East-African scientists and on-ground managers via training and tools. For natural resource planning and biodiversity research the availability of and capacity to use geospatial data are a prerequisite. Here, tools tailored to the users’ needs and the building of capacity will ensure that the concept and practice of spatial analysis is brought into common use amongst forest managers and researchers. Further, we consider visualizations vital in information policy, i.e. for communicating BIOTA-East findings and recommendations to the local people, stakeholders and politicians. Because forest conservation and management need to treat the people as integral parts of the ecosystem.
This poster introduces tools developed to support biodiversity monitoring and forest management in Kakamega Forest. A customized GIS working environment allows so-called non-geoprofessionals to handle geodata for specific tasks in the field of biodiversity research and ultimately also for an effective biodiversity management. It covers a number of chained analysis functions that are regularly asked for. Forest management and research can be further supported by taking geospatial data into the field for orientation and information purposes. Therefore, field-based mobile GIS applications have been addressed for both, the people involved in the forest’s management as well as the researchers coming to Kakamega. To facilitate their work further, visualizations were created combining familar views with less-known visual depictions in interactive GIS applications or virtual flights. Especially useful in environmental education is a multimedia game regarding local forest uses. And finally, in order to reach the local population not necessarily being used in reading maps, we also generated animations intending to bridge the dicrepancy between normal perception of reality and the (more) abstract view from above.

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