Strengthening Environmental Management and Local Planning in Indigenous Communities Through Hydrological Connectivity Analysis: Experiences from a Tropical Region of Mexico Article uri icon


  • The collective construction of environmental management and natural resource conservation strategies can empower and reduce marginalized communities%27 material and political dependence. Local participation is key to the success of these strategies. This research applies connectivity and hydrological efficiency analyses to support local water capture and soil restoration strategies in four marginalized indigenous communities in the tropical region of Mexico. We used the connectivity index (IC) and lateral hydrological efficiency index (LHEI) to identify plots where the configuration of landscape elements favors water and sediment transfer and priority areas for intervention. We analyzed 39 water capture and soil restoration infrastructures through satellite imagery to determine the water persistence (WP) and used correlation analysis and regression trees to identify significant correlations between WP and IC/LHEI values. The data were shared with local actors through participatory workshops, and we identified 11 intervention points with similar IC/LHEI characteristics in collaboration with community residents. This approach highlighted the utility of hydrological connectivity analysis to strengthen decision-making focused on food production systems and ecosystem restoration. © 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science%2bBusiness Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.

publication date

  • 2022-01-01