Examples of Successful Small Grant Proposals

PROJECT: Upgrading and Monitoring Greywater Treatement systems in the West Bank and Rural Arid Environments in Israel
COUNTRY: Israel
YEAR: 2010
ALUM: Shira Kronich
UCB COLLABORATOR: Professor Kara Nielson (Civil Engineering)

In many rural communities in the Middle East, people lack access to any well-functioning wastewater management system. In many cases, sewage treatment might best be achieved by on-site, low cost, and simple technologies. In both Palestine and Isreal, there is great potential for reuse of greywater, leading to significant reduction of treated water demand while enhancing the sustainability of water utilization and resources. However, both countries lack data on the effectiveness of such systems and face difficulties in implementing these systems on a broader scale due to issues of cost and standardization of in differing household conditions. Shira Kronich proposes to address some of these issues with her project. Her study will test influent and effluent quality from 2 small-scale treatment plants in Palestine and 2 in Israel over a sampling period of 4 months, monitor their performance, consider whether the effluent is of sufficient quality to be used for home gardens and under green houses (to increase food independence). Her work aims to help underserved people make full use of marginal water resources, ensure both systems abide by both national and WHO reuse water quality standards, help make the systems scalable, designed specific to the effluent end use, and suggest improvements to system designs if they are found lacking in any way. The project encourages collaboration between: The Arava Institute for Environmental Studies, the Palestinian Wastewater Engineers Group, and Dr. Kara Nelson, of the Civil & Environmental Engineering Department at the UC Berkeley.

PROJECT: Nutritional Education and Food Consumption: Evidence from a Field Experiment
COUNTRY: Belarus
YEAR: 2009
ALUM: Lilia Smialkova UCB
COLLABORATOR: Dr. Sofia Villas-Boas, (Ag. and Resource Economics), Michael Anderson, Kirsten Kiesel

With UCB collaborators, Lilia Smialkova implemented a comprehensive taste and food education curriculum in a rural school in order to promote healthier and more sustainable eating habits in Belarus. The education curriculum aimed to: develop the skills and abilities of student participants and their parents to recognize food quality; provide the participants with information and knowledge of food production and consumption; raise awareness, interest and support for local food production and producers; and improve children’s’ health and school performance through healthier food choices. Students participating in this project studied the origin and production methods of local and natural foods, organoleptic profiles and quality characteristics of the foods, and social and economic importance of each food within the Belarusian culture. Throughout the curriculum, the sensatory exercises were linked back to local food sovereignty and strongly correlated social and environmental sustainability. Following the lessons, participants are more able alter their own and their families food choices and help build an advantageous future for themselves and their region. The effects of this intervention on children’s perceptions and eating habits were measured and then linked back to possible changes in children’s school performance and learning. Ultimately, the project aims to widely implement this education, promoting the enjoyment of food while increasing the community’s health, protecting biodiversity and promoting local production as an essential part of the school curriculums.

PROJECT: Development of the Indonesian Young Leaders for Environmental and Governance Initiatives
COUNTRY: Indonesia
YEAR: 2009
ALUM: Alifah Lestari and Happy Tarumadevyanto
UCB COLLABORATOR: Professor Vincent Resh, ESPM

Combining several different methodologies as practiced by the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) and the UNDP Asian Young Leaders in Governance (AYLG), the Indonesian alumni of ELP and AYLG, Alifah Lestari and Happy Tarumadevyanto, designed and conducted the Indonesian Young Leadership for Environment and Governance Initiatives (IYLEGI). This project, working with young (ages 28-35) leaders, focused on leadership characteristics that emphasized motivation, creativity, and innovation, with a solid ethical foundation. The objectives of the training were, through module activities, to: (1) develop and increase the perspective, skills and capacity of the young men and women leaders in terms of environmental governance; (2) develop and support leadership initiatives that facilitate problem-resolution of issues related to environmental governance through use of local funding; and (3) develop network and coordination among the IYLEGI, and the Indonesian ELP and AYLG alumni. Thirteen young leaders from different background were trained in leadership skills and environmental governance, modules for leadership programs in environmental governance were developed, and a subset of young leaders were chosen to receive an IYLEGI grant to conduct further training activities.

PROJECT: Strengthening local leadership and capacities to enhance territorial planning and environmental management in three cities located in the Central Volcanic Chain, Guatemala, C.A.
COUNTRY: Guatemala
YEAR: 2008
ALUM: Ronny Roma, Protected Areas Technician, National Council of Protected Areas
UCB COLLABORATOR: Dr. Robin Marsh, CSRD

The overall objective of Ronny Roma’s project was to strengthen local leadership’s management of regional natural resources, to increase local skills in conservation issues, and to enhance the ability of local decision-makers to plan and manage local economies based on conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. A total of 60 local leaders in three regions were trained in six two-day workshops. Dr. Robin Marsh assisted with curriculum development of the training modules, and with some of the workshops. She also met with local officials to provide international support for the project. Local support was provided by technicians Mr. Valedemar Set and Mr. Melvin Navarro of the Parpa Project of the Agricultural Ministry. The project also had the support of Mr. Fernando Castro, Conservation Units Chairman at CONAP, and Mr. Ramiro Batzin of the local NGO Sotzil. It is anticipated that the training will be replicated in other regions by the initial 60 leaders, and that this will contribute to strengthening the Guatemalan Protected Areas System (SIGAP).

PROJECT: Business Development Support and Competitiveness Strategies for Small, Medium and Micro Ecotourism Enterprises in Egypt
COUNTRY: Egypt
YEAR: 2006
ALUM : Ahmed Hassan (ELP 2003), Task Manager with the Ecotourism Planning, Development & Promotion LIFE Red Sea Project, USAID Funded, Ministry of Tourism
UCB COLLABORATORS: Haas School team , Sami Kamel (ELP 2002)

The overall objective of Ahmed Hassan’s project was to develop ecotourism among small, medium and micro enterprises in the Red Sea and Siwa areas of Egypt , enabling these small scale entrepreneurs to fully participate in the tourism industry currently dominated by large business. A team of four grad students from the International Business Development Program at Haas School of Business visited Egypt in May/June of 2006 to conduct market research, review competitive business models and strategies, analyze which would prove most potentially sustainable and competitive and then develop appropriate entrepreneurship models and marketing plans for these enterprises. The results of the team’s work were communicated to the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and the American Chamber of Commerce, among other stakeholders. The project included publication of an entrepreneurship manual, disseminating outputs on line, and finally, initiating two pilot projects.

PROJECT: Pre-Feasibility Study to Apply Economic Instruments for the Conservation of Agricultural Lands in the Lurin Valley, Metropolitan Lima , Peru
COUNTRY: Peru
YEAR: 2006
ALUM: Anna Zucchetti, Director, Grupo GEA (Group for Environmental Enterprise )
UCB COLLABORATOR: Professor David Zilberman

Anna Zucchetti’s organization has been collaborating with other groups as part of The Green Valley Program for the sustainable development of the Lurin Valley surrounding Lima, Peru . The SGI proposal was to assess a variety of economic models and instruments for ongoing conservation of the Valley. This assessment process has incorporated the activities of numerous stakeholders in exchange and evaluation of experiences and solutions for conserving and managing agricultural lands. In particular, the project provided funding for a conference/ workshop held in August 2006, attended by Professor David Zilberman, that engaged the Environmental Authority, Municipal Government and the public of metropolitan Lima in presentations and fruitful debate. David Zilberman shared his expertise in urban development and valuation of/payment for environmental services.

PROJECT: Development of Business Strategies & Marketing Plan for the Community Based Pro-poor Enterprises and NTFP Trade (Business and Marketing of Non-timber Forest Products from the Community Forests of Nepal)
COUNTRY: Nepal
YEAR: 2005
ALUM: Dinesh Paudel
UCB COLLABORATOR: The Clausen Center for International Business and Policy, Haas School of Business, UCB

Rural poverty and low employment in areas managed by local communities has persisted where these communities derive only minimal economic benefit from their non-timber forest products. This project proposed that enterprise development through a pro-poor entrepreneurship approach can conserve natural resources while generating income and equity for poor community forest users. A team of four Haas students worked with Dinesh Paudel (Community Forestry advisor), Forest User Groups, and an incipient community-based paper enterprise in the Himalayas to develop a business plan for sustainable operations under the pro-poor entrepreneurship model.

PROJECT: Development of a Ranger-based Water Quality Monitoring Program for Protected Area Management in Uganda: A Case Study of the Kibale Forest & Ruwenzori Mountains National Parks, Mid-Western Uganda .
COUNTRY: Uganda
YEAR: 2005
ALUM: Aventino Kasangaki
UCB COLLABORATOR: Prof. Vincent Resh

This project recognized that rangers in Uganda’s protected areas (PAs) have the potential to provide needed services in water quality monitoring and habitat assessment in the course of their regular duties. A workshop in October 2005 trained park and reserve rangers in simple and inexpensive water quality assessment and monitoring techniques to result in the information necessary for wiser resource management decisions. The project supports the Research and Monitoring Unit of the Uganda Wildlife Authority in implementing their Monitoring and Research Plan, and yields findings that will form the basis for future intervention and restoration efforts. Vince Resh, aquatic ecologist from UC Berkeley, co-led the training.

PROJECT: Development of Marketing Strategy of High-Value Indigenous Fruit Trees and Medicinal Plants from the Congo Basin
COUNTRY: Cameroon
YEAR: 2004
ALUM: Zac Tchoundjeu
UCB COLLABORATORS: The Clausen Center for International Business and Policy, Haas School of Business, UCB

Alumnus Zac Tchoundjeu is Regional Coordinator for the Humid Tropics of West and Central Africa program of the World Agroforestry Center (ICRAF). This project aimed to develop strategic marketing of high-value indigenous fruit trees, medicinal plants and other forest products to reduce rural poverty in the Congo Basin. Improved planting materials, now available after ten years of breeding efforts, and market information would provide opportunities to cultivate and sell indigenous tree products as a source of income. The project aimed to develop market analysis and strategies and disseminate this information to scientists and partners involved in the tree domestication process, including farmer associations.

PROJECT: Proposal to Establish the Guizhou Biodiversity Group to Protect Biodiversity in Rural and Nature Reserve communities in Guizhou Province, Peoples Republic of China
COUNTRY: China
YEAR: 2003
ALUM: Ren Xiaodong
UCB COLLABORATOR: Melinda Herrold (post-doc in Ecosystem Sciences)

ELP alumn Ren Xiaodong, Director of the Community-based Conservation & Development Research Center at Guizhou Normal University, proposed to establish a Guizhou Biodiversity Group, constituting a "clearinghouse" for communication, outreach, and collaboration among Local and National Nature Reserves and other environmental organizations in the region. Xiaodong proposed to collaborate with UCB’s, Melinda Herrold, who had experience with Nature Reserve policy in Guizhou Province.
The project goals were to: 1) develop the Biodiversity Group’s constitution, mission statement and sustainable set of objectives; 2) hold a Forum to discuss and devise systems to better anticipate problems and their solutions with respect to new threats to biodiversity; 3) create a province-wide database on credible threats to biodiversity and individual databases for each nature reserve, using the CORINE-type pro forma for important species, together with a catalogue of indigenous knowledge, skills and customs related to species identification, use and conservation; 4) construct a mechanism for tabulating and classifying local findings on biodiversity and the means for informing policymakers; and 5) become the definitive, central point for contact and coordination of the many interests and organizations connected to biodiversity in Guizhou Province.


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