A quasi-experimental study of impacts of Tanzania's wildlife management areas on rural livelihoods and wealth

Since the 2000s, Tanzania's natural resource management policy has emphasised Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), designed to promote wildlife and biodiversity conservation, poverty alleviation and rural development. We carried out a quasi-experimental impact evaluation of social impacts of WMAs, collecting data from 24 villages participating in 6 different WMAs across two geographical regions, and 18 statistically matched control villages. Across these 42 villages, we collected participatory wealth ranking data for 13,578 households. Using this as our sampling frame, we conducted questionnaire surveys with a stratified sample of 1,924 household heads and 945 household heads' wives. All data were collected in 2014/ 15, with a subset of questions devoted to respondents' recall on conditions that existed in 2007, when first WMAs became operational. Questions addressed household demographics, land and livestock assets, resource use, income- generating activities and portfolios, participation in natural resource management decision- making, benefits and costs of conservation. Datasets permit research on livelihood and wealth trajectories, and social impacts, costs and benefits of conservation interventions in the context of community- based natural resource management.