The indigenous Bedouin farmers as land rehabilitators—Setup of an action research programme in the Negev

Amir Mor-Mussery*, David Helman, Yael Agmon, Itsik Ben-Shabat, Salem El-Frejat, Deborah Goldman Golan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The Negev suffers from enhanced land degradation, mostly due to lack of awareness about its state, and hostility between the region's indigenous Bedouin farmers and the authorities. In order to examine a potential solution to this 'Lose–Lose' situation, a unique project is underway, with the collaboration of the Yeroham Municipality and the adjacent Rahma Bedouin farmers' village. The concept of this ongoing Programme is based on bidirectional knowledge transfer of farming data between the farmers and land scientists, aimed to adapt Bedouin traditional cultivation methods and transform them into methods that restore the environment and are also profitable. In order to reach this goal, a highly knowledgeable Bedouin liaison person was appointed to carry out the project together with the Coordinating Team. A comprehensive study and tour were carried out in order to analyze the different landforms and Bedouin cultivation preferences. An initial survey was carried out and data from literature collected in order to determine the ecological and archaeological characteristics of the ecosystem. The area was then prepared for agricultural utilization by removing widespread garbage and dealing with wadis that have been filled with construction waste. This project, which integrates soil enhancement, agriculture utilization, and traditional Bedouin farming, aims for rehabilitation of the northern Negev gullied areas. However, the implementation of the study concept in the field is accompanied by many challenges related to Bedouin interclan communication and the diverse types of degraded lands.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)2533-2539
Number of pages7
JournalLand Degradation and Development
Issue number17
StatePublished - Nov 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


  • Rahma Bedouin
  • farmers
  • in situ land rehabilitation
  • stakeholder involvement
  • wadi reclamation
  • youth


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