Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Agriculture, Food and Environment



First Advisor

Dr. G. Andrew Stainback


This study evaluated the effectiveness of two distinct approaches to ecosystem conservation in Rwanda’s Nyungwe National Park: cookstove technology adoption and market-based policy instruments. A June 2014 survey of 250 households revealed that use of improved cookstove technology dramatically decreased fuelwood consumption for households in rural Rwanda, but that design, engineering and conflicting policy issues can hamper the widespread use of energy-efficient cooking technology. The second component of this research used the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) within a multi-criteria analysis (MCA) framework to explore the options for designing and implementing market-based instruments around the country’s conservation targets, particularly the highly biodiverse Nyungwe National Park. A series of workshops, held in June, October and November of 2014, were conducted at the local level (with regional farmers and agricultural cooperatives) and the national level (with representatives from conservation organizations and government). Focus group participants identified criteria for evaluating MBIs, and then ranked the priority of these criteria. Finally, national-level experts ranked how well distinct MBIs could achieve conservation goals. This paper summarizes the focus group findings and provides a recommendation for the design and implementation for market-based conservation instruments in Rwanda.