Field study at Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve

Following the field survey at Western Nghe Biosphere Reserve, from the 16thof October to the 22nd of October, 2016, Centre for Natural Resources and Environmental Studies (CRES), VNU conducted a fieldtrip to Đồng Nai Biosphere Reserve that is part of the nationally independent research project: “Developing a set of criteria and process of monitoring and evaluation of management effectiveness of biosphere reserves in Viet Nam”, managed by Ministry of Science and Technology and implemented by CRES. The aim of this fieldtrip is to review the current state of management related to conservation and development activities at the Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve

Working with the Board of Management of Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve & People’s Committee of Đồng Phú District  (Bình Phước Province)

Joining this trip has various scientists having expertise in natural, social researching and policy analyzing from many research institutes and universities such as: Centre for Natural Resources and Environmental Studies (CRES), Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources (IEBR), Vietnam Environment & Sustainable Development Institute (VESDI), Institute of Anthropology, Hanoi University of Science, Hanoi University of Agriculture, and Vietnam MAB National Committee.

During this trip, the research group has worked with Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve’s and Dong Nai Culture and Nature Reserve’s Board of Management at Ma Da Commune, Vinh Cuu District, Dong Nai province; survey some locations such as: Headquarters for Eastern Region Party Committee, The Central Committee for South Vietnam relic and Center of Ecology- Culture- History of War Zone D. The research group also worked with leaders from People’s Committee of Vinh Cuu & Tan Phu districts, Board of Management of Cat Tien National Park; survey natural and socioeconomic status of Tri An hydroelectric in Dong Nai River. Besides, the group also examine a number of conservation, tourism development and research destinations in the buffer and core zones of Cat Tien National Park, especially, the “nhà dài” model which is built under cultural customs of Ma ethnic group, Ta Lai commune, Tan Phu district (buffer zone of national park) – a model that combines business accessing and local communities in tourism development. The research group surveyed Bau Sau area as well, the core area of Cat Tien National Park which is one of the few National Park/ Natural Reserve where tourists and researchers could visually see large animals such as deer, gaur and crocodiles… At the end of this trip, there were meetings between our research group and leaders from People’s Committee of Cat Tien district, Lam Dong Province and Dong Phu district, Binh Phuoc Province.

Examine tourist sites in buffer zone of the Biosphere Reserve

In this trip, the group’s experts focused primarily on the following information including: (i) functions, tasks, resources and organizational structure as well as raising issues of the local government agencies; (ii) roles and levels of participation of the organizations and local government in planning, tasks implementation and monitoring, and management efficiency evaluation of Biosphere Reserve of Western Nghe An; (iii) difficulties, challenges and proposed solutions for overcoming confronting duties of the Biosphere Reserve.

The research group has received a very enthusiastic reception of the local government agencies and satisfactorily gathered enough essential information. Besides, experts from the research groups has exchanged frankly and given recommendations to local agencies and authorities for better implementation of missions and promoting the strengths of local area in social-economic development, community based tourism and ecotourism, orientation for sustainable development and conservation of natural resources.

Examine tourist destinations and scientific research areas in core area of Cat Tien National Park

The results, obtained from the fieldwork at Dong Nai Biosphere Reserve and other fieldtrips at previous biosphere reserves, are going to help the project to fulfill its main mission – “building criteria and process building of monitoring and evaluation of management effectiveness of biosphere reserves across Viet Nam”, that contribute to the better management of the biosphere reserves and support effectively in conservative activities and sustainable development of Viet Nam.