Abu Nasar Abdullah
The Sundarbans comprises a unique and diverse range of habitats and biodiversity The Sundarbans is one of the poorest and most remote regions in Bangladesh.
Apart from a few isolated case-studies, it is relatively poorly understood from a livelihoods perspective. Local situations in terms of available livelihood options are continuously changing. This is important to surrounding local communities, who depend on the mangrove resources for their main source of livelihood.
There are some studies on mangrove resources degradation but where less attention has been paid to household’s responses to fluctuating resources and the extent of their resource dependency. Moreover these studies have not captured the importance of biophysical, social, cultural, economic, and institutional factors that largely determine the livelihood options of different sections of people in the Sundarbans.
Therefore, there is an urgent need to carry out such investigations to examine how mangrove-resource dependent households develop survival strategies to cope with changes in assets and/or degradation of the Sundarbans resources. An attempt has been made to synthesize the concepts of survival strategies with livelihood assets, livelihoods options and livelihoods outcomes.
Therefore, the study need to examine the relationships between resource dependencies, changes in asset situation and survival strategies among the Sundarbans surrounding communities where livelihoods are greatly influenced by mangrove resources, shrimp culture and cyclone.
The objective of my study is to examine the distribution of household assets, livelihood strategies and livelihood outcomes among households in different income groups surrounding the Sundarbans mangrove forest. It includes a detailed assessment of the various factors that make households vulnerable to livelihood shocks with particular emphasis on cyclone Aila.
The role of the rich and diverse mangrove resource base and expansion of shrimp aquaculture will be examined in relation to livelihood strategies and outcomes in Mongla and Koyra sub-districts on the edge of the Sundarbans.