The program is an interdisciplinary project, which is funded by the National Science Foundation and led by researcher Dr. Li An. Titled, “Impacts of Ecosystem Service Payments in Coupled Natural and Human Systems,” the project consisted of 9 days of field work in the Fanjingshan National Nature Reserve (FNNR).
FNNR is considered a high priority for conservation although it is an area that experiences a high amount of human activity. The reserve is also a UNESCO heritage site, and is the last remaining habitat of the Guizhou Golden Monkey. The reserve is a biodiversity hotspot that is not only home to a wide variety of wildlife but also approximately 13,000 people, who use the reserve to collect timber, herbs, and occasionally animals for human consumption.
Our role, as the selected Spring Scholars, in the project was to film and document the research being conducted in the reserve by FNNR staff and Postdoctoral Scholar Hsiang Ling Chen. We were also fortunate enough to receive training on the data collection measures used in the reserve.
In addition to the field training we received, we joined Phd. student Shuang Yang of the SDSU geography department to film and document him and his research team, which consisted of 4 students from a local university, conducting household surveys.