APPENDIX 1. Sample interview scripts for the CAMC members in ACA, 2007

Name of the committee: Respondent code #:

Time interview initiated: Date:

Greetings! My name is _________ and I am conducting this research for my Ph.D. degree. I am here conducting interviews to better understand how conservation works in Annapurna. With your permission, I’d like to interview you. Every committee member has had an equal chance of being included in this study, and you have been randomly selected. Your responses will be completely anonymous, confidential and the findings will never discuss individual responses. They will be put together with over 300 other people I am interviewing, to get an overall picture. It will be impossible to pick you out from what you say, so please feel free to tell me what you think. Your participation in this study is voluntary. You do not have to answer any question you do not want to, and you can discontinue at any time without consequences. The results of the study will help to design better conservation projects, both here and abroad – especially those that empower local people.

I expect the interview to take about 30 minutes. Would you be willing to participate?


Please tell me about your role on the CAMC?

Why did you join the CAMC?

Why do you think others have joined?

Do you feel that you personally benefit in any way by being a CAMC member?
[1] yes [0] no

If ‘yes,’ what kinds of benefits do you get?

Do you think that by belonging to the CAMC have you acquired new skills or learned something valuable? [1] yes [0] no

What have you learned?

Are there any disadvantages? [1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ please mention

Do you think that the benefits of being a member outweigh the costs? [1] yes [0] no

In your view, what are the advantages and disadvantages of working with the ACAP?

Do you think that the advantages of working with the ACAP outweigh disadvantages or vice-versa? If so, how strongly?
Advantage outweighs
5. Strongly
3. About equal
Disadvantage outweighs
2. Barely
4. Barely
1. Strongly

What role does the government play in nature conservation in your village?


How does the CAMC usually make decisions?
A chair decides and informs the members
A chair asks the members what they think and then decides
The members hold a discussion and decide together
The members hold a discussion, consult community members and decide together
Members vote and decision is made by a simple majority

Have there been instances in which you have disagreed with the CAMC’s decisions?
[1] yes [0] no

What do you do in those cases?

How often have they happened?

Do you feel that the ACAP consult the CAMC as often as it should? [1] yes [0] no

If ‘no,’ should it consult more? [1] yes [0] no


I’d like to read you a series of statements and would like to know whether you agree or disagree with each statement. You can tell me you agree, strongly agree, disagree or strongly disagree. You can also tell me you have no opinion.

The concept of conservation area is appropriate in this place.
5. Strongly agree
3. I don’t know
2. Disagree
4. Agree
1. Strongly disagree

Why or why not? ________________________________________

I regard the conservation program in my village as successful.
5. Strongly agree
3. I don’t know
2. Disagree
4. Agree
1. Strongly disagree

What do you mean by successful?

The ACAP has been crucial for proper functioning of the CAMC.
5. Very important
3. I don’t know
2. Unimportant
4. Important
1. Very unimportant

In what ways it has been crucial?

What proportion of the population do you think has a positive attitude towards the ACAP?
[1] almost none [2] less than half [3] about half
[4] more than half [5] almost everyone

What is your overall assessment of the ACAP’s performance?
5. Very good
3. I don’t know
2. Bad
4. Good
1. Very bad


I’d like to talk with you about who do people trust and why they trust in general. Would you please tell me your opinions regarding trust.

Would you say that most people can be trusted? [1] yes [0] no

Why or why not?

What are the important criteria for you to decide whether to trust or distrust others?

In general, do you trust CAMC members? [1] yes [0] no

If ‘yes,’ how many? ____
[5] everyone [4] more than half [3] about half
[2] less than half [1] almost none

Do you trust that the ACAP staff to be honest with local residents? Would you say you trust/distrust them entirely or only somewhat?
5. Entirely
3. Neither trust nor distrust
2. Somewhat
4. Somewhat
1. Entirely

Why do you trust or distrust them?

The ACAP staff are competent in their work.
5. Always
3. I don’t know
2. Rarely
4. Most often
1. Never

ACAP is predictable and keep up its promises.
5. Always
3. I don’t know
2. Rarely
4. Most often
1. Never


Do you feel that the relationship between local residents and committee members has changed over time? How so? Please give specific events.

Has the insurgency had any impacts on the relationship? [1] yes [0] no

If ‘yes,’ please mention the impacts.

To your knowledge, have local people protested against any decisions the committee has made in the past?
5. Always
3. I don’t know
2. Sometimes
4. Often
1. Never
How many instances? _________ #.

Overall, how many household participate in the committee’s activities?
5. All households
3. About half
2. About one fourth
4. About two third
1. Almost none

How often do you formally and informally interact with ACAP staff? (Record actual response as well.) _____
More than once a month
Once a month
Once in every 2 months
Once in every 3 months
Once in every 6 months
Once in a year

How do you rank the ACAP staff’s understanding of your culture and local situation?
5. Very well
3. To some extent
2. A little
4. Well
1. Not at all


How long have you been on the committee? ___________ years.

To your knowledge, have there been conflicts between the government and local people in the past? [1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ please mention the events_________


Have you received any training from the ACAP that has been helpful to run the office?
[1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ please mention ___________________

How much power do you have to influence the decision making processes in the CAMC?
[1] none [2] very little
[3] some [4] a lot

Do you think you should have more? [1] yes [0] no

Do you think local people have the power to influence the CAMC’s decision?
[1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ how?

Do some people have more power than others? Who?

How satisfied are you with the functioning of the CAMC?
5. Extremely satisfied
3. Don’t know
2. Unsatisfied
4. Satisfied
1. Extremely unsatisfied

How often do other CAMC members listen to your suggestions?
5. Always
3. Sometimes
Don’t care
2. A few times
4. Most times
1. Not at all

How many members listen to your suggestions?_______ #.


What proportion of your friends do you feel are in agreement with what the CAMC is doing?
[1] almost none [2] less than half [3] about half
[4] more than half [5] almost everyone

Has that changed over time? [1] yes [0] no

Do some people benefit more from the conservation program than others? [1] yes [0] no

Who benefits most?

Are they on the CAMCs? [1] yes [0] no

What proportion of people who live here trust the ACAP?

Why do you think other people trust or distrust the ACAP?

How important is it for you to be on the committee?
5. Very important
3. Neither-nor
2. Quite unimportant
4. Quite important
1. Very unimportant


Were you on the CAMC before? [1] yes [0] no.
If ‘yes,’ how many times ____

Would you like to serve on the CAMC for another term?
5. Most likely
3. Undecided
2. Unlikely
4. Likely
1. Very unlikely

Why or why not?____________________________________________

Social relations:

Has anybody suggested you to file a candidacy for the membership? [1] yes [0] no
If ‘yes,’ who? __________

Apart from you, is anybody from your household a member of any committee, group or organization? [1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ how many_______

If the CAMC needs any help to complete a project, whom do you contact to get the help? Please mention all persons, organizations, agencies, etc.___________________

How many people within the CAMC have acquired the capability and qualities to be effective leaders? (Please record the actual number _________.)
[1] none (0) [2] few (1-3) [3] some (4-6)
[4] many (> 6) [5] all

Do the leaders tend to come from a few groups or families that are always the same, or do the leaders represent a wider circle among the community?
[1] from few groups [2] from various groups within the community
[3] from almost all the groups within the community


Please say whether you agree or disagree with the statement. The CAMC has the right to make decisions that all villagers have to abide by, whether or not they agree with them.
5. Strongly agree
3. Neutral
2. Disagree
4. Agree
1. Strongly disagree

Has your perception about the utility of the CAMC changed? Past three years vs. before the insurgency.

Institutional arrangements:

How long has your CAMC been in the place? ________ years

How well do you think various ethnic groups are represented in your CAMC?
[4] highly representative [3] somewhat representative
[2] slightly representative [1] not representative at all

What is the mission of your CAMC?

Overall, how effective is the committee’s leadership?
[3] very effective [2] somewhat effective [1] not effective at all

What do you consider to be the biggest challenges the ACA is facing today?

Resource status:
Would you please tell me whether the status of natural resources has improved, remained the same or worsened during the following time periods?
Improved (3)
Remained the same (2)
Worsened (1)
Compared to 10 years ago, the status of natural resources in your area has:

In the last five years (after the insurgency), the status of natural resources in your area has:

Environmental values:

Do you think protecting this park is important? [1] yes [0] no. Why? _____________

There could be many reasons that motivate you to conserve this area. Would you please tell me how important to you is each of the following reasons?
Very important (3)
Important (2)
Not important (1)
To meet my natural resource needs

To protect animals and plants

To help others meet their needs

To maintain ecological balance

Institutional resilience:

In your opinion, have the following activities increased, decreased or remained the same during the insurgency?
Remained the same
Meeting of committee members

Collecting natural resources without a permit

Grazing livestock in restricted areas

Hunting wildlife

We are going to assess the outcomes of the present management regime. Please tell me if the following things are better or worse now then they used to be 10 years ago.
Much better
Somewhat better
No change
Somewhat worse
Much worse
People can get permits to harvest natural resources easily

Ordinary people can influence conservation and development issues in the village

People have an adequate standard of living

Conservation efforts are effective

Have you received any threat against you as a CAMC member? [1] yes [0] no

If ‘yes,’ why did not you resign? ____________________________

Have you lost anything as a result of the insurgency?

Have you learned anything new as a result of the insurgency?

What strategies have you adopted to cope with the insurgency?

Collective action, conflict and information:

In the past year, how often did the CAMC organize collective actions?
[0] never (0) [1] occasionally (1-5 times)
[2] frequently (6-10 times) [3] always (> 10 times)

Compared with other villages, is there more or less conflict in your village?
[1] more [2] the same [3] less

What are your three most important information sources about what the government is doing (such as conservation programs, development activities, agricultural subsidies, etc.)?
1. ________________
2. ________________
3. ________________

Did people migrate from your village due to the insurgency? [1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ how many?

Can CAMCs manage the ACA on their own? [1] yes [0] no

Why or why not?

If the government decides to hand over the ACA to CAMCs, how long do you think your committee needs to take the responsibility solely?
[5] < a year [4] 1-2 years [3] 3-4 years
[2] 5-6 years [1] > 6 years


Please check one: [1] male [0] female Ethnicity: ______________

What is your age? ______ years

How many people including you live in your household?

Have you migrated to this place? [1] yes [0] no. If ‘yes,’ which year ________
From where? _____________

How much education have you had?

What is your main occupation?

What statement best describes your total annual household income (from all sources and before taxes)?
Less than NRs. 30,000
NRs. 30-60,000
NRs. 60-90,000
NRs. 90-120,000
more than NRs. 120,000

Thank you very much for your cooperation.

Time interview terminated: