Title: Livelihood of ethnic minorities and sustainable development of buffer zones: a case study of the Chu Yang Sing National Park, the Central Highlands of Vietnam

Authors: Nguyen Hoang Phuong; Dung T.N. Nguyen; Lien T.H. Pham; Thanh Duc Dang

Addresses: Faculty of Natural Sciences and Technology, Tay Nguyen University, Daklak, Vietnam ' Department of Geography and Environmental Planning, The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand; Faculty of Business Administration, Thai Nguyen University of Economics and Business Administration, Thai Nguyen, Vietnam ' Faculty of Environment, University of Science, Vietnam National University-Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Virginia Institute of Marine Science, William and Mary, P.O. Box 1346, Gloucester Point, VA 23062, USA ' Institute for Water and Environment Research, Thuy Loi University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Pillar of Engineering Systems and Design, Singapore University of Technology and Design, Singapore

Abstract: Buffer zones play a crucial role in protecting ecological integrity of forests and maintaining the development of surrounding communities, while booming population and intra-zone dynamics may pose many threats on their survival. The main aim of this study is to investigate the impact of the local livelihood of ethnic minorities on the sustainable development of buffer zones via a case study of the Chu Yang Sing National Park, Vietnam. Results indicated that most of the livelihood of ethnic minorities was related to harvesting forest products, and a large percentage of people still lived below the standard of the country. Additionally, their uncontrolled exploitation behaviours resulted in negative impacts on the biodiversity of the national park; this then triggered backward effects on people's income. Therefore, we suggest establishing a conservation strategy that encourages cooperation among local people to improve their livelihood to ensure the sustainable development of this important national park.

Keywords: conservation; ethnic minority community; biodiversity; poverty; livelihood; Central Highlands of Vietnam; buffer zones.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSD.2019.104724

International Journal of Sustainable Development, 2019 Vol.22 No.1/2, pp.41 - 60

Received: 01 Nov 2018
Accepted: 19 Jul 2019

Published online: 29 Jan 2020 *

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