Home Institution

University of North Carolina

Publication Date

Spring 2015

Program Name

Uganda: Development Studies


Uganda is a beautiful country filled with an extensive amount of natural resources, one of the most profound being wetlands. It is said that these wetlands are a crucial source of food and water for almost 3 million people (NEMA, 2012 and Oguttu et.al, 2008). They also provide many more invaluable socioeconomic benefits for the country. As Uganda experiences increasing development as well as a rapidly increasing population, the wetlands become increasingly necessary, at the same time they become increasingly threatened. It is written in the 1995 Ugandan constitution that Ugandan policy is aimed at ensuring sustainable development for the protection of the environment as well as the prosperity of the people, however this has been debatable.

This study looks at the nexus between industry, wetlands, and local villages in Jinja Uganda, analyzing the dynamics and views between various stakeholders. The overall goal was to evaluate how this nexus applies to rights-based sustainable development with a greater hope of gaining insight into how development can be done without compromising the environment as well as the rights of the people.

Guided interviews with various stakeholders such as, village leaders(LC), and ecologist, industrial personnel, and environmental officers were conducted to gain a range of point of views on a number of dynamics with in the study. In addition, informal interviews as well as a focus group was done to gain similar results. The other people consulted were a health care worker, development studies student, as well as other community members. Three villages, Masese, Loco, and Buhumbuli were visited for the study, as well as three factories, Steel Rolling Mills, Skyfat, and Nile Agro.

The study found that the relationship between the village and neighboring industries is complex. Both parties rely on the wetlands for various activities and everyone recognizes that these activities have detrimental effect on the wetlands as well as the future of Uganda. The respondents realize their county has various policies to prevent this degradation, but feel as though the implementation is faulty due to corruption, lack of communication, and underfunding. As a result the village members feel they are neglected and not considered when it comes to wetland protection and development. The study concluded that rights-based sustainable development is the necessary approach for Ugandan development, but that due to poor implementation of policy, this is not currently occurring. With better communication, lack of political influence, and increased respect for the local villages, Uganda can find the balance between development and environmental protection.


African Studies | Community-Based Research | Demography, Population, and Ecology | Environmental Policy | Environmental Studies | Nature and Society Relations | Place and Environment | Politics and Social Change | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration


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