Community Based Natural Resources Management (CBNRM) is an approach used in the management of natural resources worldwide. This approach could promote biodiversity conservation and socio-economic goals if implemented well. However, there is little research involving the reconciliation of environmental and social goals. To judge the effectiveness of CBNRM, six social and environmental indicators were used including biodiversity protection, empowerment, conflict resolution, gender balance, equity, and local participation. Mumbwa and Lupande Game Management Areas (GMAs) were the locations of this study. Data collection included 349 interviews with respondents among whom were 7 chiefs and 5 Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) officials, document analysis, and field observations. Study results indicated that in Zambia, utilization of CBNRM rarely resulted in the protection of biodiversity, neither did it guarantee the sustainable utilization of natural resources and nor offer social benefits previously attributed to it. However, the study established that with proper implementation suggested, desired benefits could be achieved.
Keywords: Biodiversity. Community – based natural resource management. Sustainability. Zambia.