Adaptive management – is an approach for coping with the complexity of resource management, based on establishing indicators, systematically trying interventions, monitoring their effects and learning from feedback. It depends on the ability of resource managers to receive, understand and respond to positive or negative signals in the physical and social environment and to change management responses accordingly. Adaptive management begins with participatory analysis of the situation at the project site, development of a specific set of hypotheses about what is occurring and identification of actions that could lead to a desired outcome and negotiation of the actions to be tested. Consequently, adaptive management must be a social as well as scientific process, focused on the development of institutions as well as on hypotheses and experimental frameworks. Adaptation also refers to the ability changing assumptions and interventions to respond to the new information obtained through monitoring efforts.
Capacity development/building – is an ongoing learning process by which individuals, groups or organizations increase their abilities to perform core functions, identify opportunities, solve problems, define and achieve objectives, in an effective, efficient and sustainable manner.
Community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) – is a participatory action-oriented research and development approach research which emphasizes the importance of multiple stakeholder analysis and involvement. Increasing concerns about the (mis)management of the natural resource base stimulated the development of such an approach in which both ecological and sociological aspects of resource dynamics are often addressed more at an aggregated level, such as, for example, a micro watershed, a watershed, or a (community) forest. This allows dealing more systematically with the dynamic and often complex interactions among components of a natural resources system or a production system (e.g., farming, fishing, forestry, herding, collecting edibles). Stakeholder involvement refers to the active and meaningful participation of small farmers, large farmers, entrepreneurs, local authorities, local groups, NGO staff and policy makers at different levels who together analyze problems and define research and development initiatives and work towards reconciling conflicting or diverging points of views and interests. In particular, the active involvement of NGOs, local governments, grassroots groups and farmer associations is now a feature in many, participatory, natural resource management research projects.