Ghana and the Cˆote d’Ivoire – Resilient Ecosystem and Sustainable Transformation of Rural Economies (RESTORE)

The purpose of the RESTORE Activity is to demonstrate a scalable and regionally replicable model for community-led governance, natural resource management, and biodiversity conservation that aligns with regional and government priorities in cocoa production landscapes in the Guinean forests of Ghana and Cˆote d’Ivoire. The RESTORE Activity envisions that in partnership with multinational chocolate companies, farmer cooperatives, and local partners, it will establish the technical capacity, policy implementation approaches, and economic incentives to bring cocoa-producing families, governments, and the private sector together in a joint endeavor to secure improved livelihoods from cocoa farming, socially inclusive additional economic opportunities, increased tree cover and
a scalable contribution to national and corporate emission reductions targets. The activity works at both farm and landscape scales and seeks to support an inclusive landscape management governance body in selected target areas to drive resilient economic growth, with expanded opportunities for women and youth based on sustainable resource use.

RESTORE’s specific objectives include increasing tree cover on and off farms in the cocoa production in four landscapes in the Guinean forest in Ghana and Cˆote d’Ivoire). At present, the conservation and biodiversity indicators for the off-farm forest restoration activity are anticipated to be amenable to evaluation through a quasi-experimental difference-in-difference (DiD) approach. The data collection in sites with ongoing forest restoration and paired comparison sites without restoration efforts would provide essential data for understanding the effectiveness of forest restoration for viral zoonotic risk mitigation.

Data collection will occur in Ghana and CDI from March-May 2024. The PDRI-DevLab team will analyze the qualitative and quantitative data from May-August 2024 and develop a ‘Baseline Findings Report’. The analysis will include descriptive statistics, cross-sectional regression analysis, and satellite imagery analysis. This project is supported by a number of PDRI-DevLab Research Fellows.