Knowledge co-creation in implementing landscape approach in Kalomo, Zambia: A new landscape architecture?

PhD Student: Malaika Pauline Yanou

Tutor: Olivier Mbabia, University of Montreal

University of Amsterdam


Problem definition

Although integrated landscape approaches have recently gained attention in the scientific community as a framework for multi-stakeholder engagement, their conceptualization, terminology, and application are entirely under discussion. While there is an agreement that landscape approaches have potential for balancing competing demands and integrating policies for multiple land uses and multiples actors, the question of how to integrate different types of knowledge remains under-researched and completely disconnected from political discourses. Alternative forms of knowledge and enhancing knowledge co-production mechanisms and practices are some of the new challenges facing global environmental changes and sustainable development processes.

Research Question

How can knowledge co-creation in the implementation of landscape approaches be designed in a way that values traditional ecological knowledge and empowers marginalized actors in complex multi-functional landscapes?

Theoretical Framework

The theoretical framework comprehends four strands of scholarly literature: 1) debate on ILA conceptualization, terminology, and application; 2) local knowledge and conservation practices, 3) challenges and potentials of knowledge co-production processes; 4) politics of knowledge, exploring knowledge and sustainable development relationship to show the (in)adequacy of the discourse on knowledge.


The study will adopt a mixed methods design, incorporating both qualitative and quantitative methods.

Secondary data collection includes comprehensive policy documents review, government documents, and archives. Primary data collection will be gathered through participatory observation (attending meetings), and interviews with platform participants.

Data analysis includes Q-methodology for discourses analysis, and social network analysis to identify actors networking.

Expected Results

By analysing co-production knowledge process in ILA implementation, the study expects to: a) contribute to strategies for knowledge co-production design and implementation; b) obtain the active participation of the different stakeholders in negotiating trade-offs and synergies; c) analyze the effects of knowledge production in empowering marginalized groups and of knowledge-power relationship.