By Nichodemus Mwania
Land is the most important factor of production, besides labour and capital in Kenya. It is not only a critical resource, but also the foundation of economic development for the country (MLHUD, 2016). The major land-cover types in Kenya are forests, savannahs, grasslands, wetlands, fresh and saline water bodies, and deserts. These are used for agriculture, pastoralism, water catchments, nature reserves, urban and rural settlements, industry, mining, infrastructure, tourism, recreation. Other uses include cultural sites, fishing, forestry, energy. A larger population in the country derives their livelihoods from land based activities (MLHUD, 2016).
Just like buying clothes in a shop where you have to perform relevant assessments to ascertain whether they fit your tastes and size, so does purchasing a parcel of land or a plot also involve performing relevant assessments to ascertain authenticity of ownership and whether it fits your desires. However, before I proceed to discuss the fundamentals of purchasing land in Kenya, lets us first take a look at some facts below.
Urban population increase
Since independence, the urban population in Kenya has been on the increase. The urban population grew to 1 million in 1969, increasing at a rate of 7.1 percent per year. At the time of Kenya's first population census in 1948, there were 17 urban centres with an aggregate population of 285,000 people. The urban population was proportionately small (5.3 percent of the total population), with majority of the urban dwellers being non-African. Since then the number of urban centres, the urban population and the proportion of people living in urban centres have been increasing. The number of urban centres increased to 91 in 1979 and to 230 in 2009. The urban population increased from 2.3 million in 1979 and to 12 million in 2009. The proportion of people living in urban centres increased from 15.1 percent in 1979 and to 31.3 percent in 2009. In all Censuses, the urban population has been disproportionately concentrated in Nairobi and Mombasa (Kenya Republic, 2012). Being a Capital City, Nairobi is the most urbanised County in Kenya, with its entire population being urbanised. Nairobi is followed by Coast and Central provinces with more than one-third of the population living in urban centres respectively. Nyanza, Rift Valley and Eastern provinces have between 21 and 25 percent of urban population. North Eastern and Western are the least urbanised provinces in Kenya with less than 20 percent of the population living in urban centres (Kenya Republic, 2012). Nairobi and Mombasa, which are the same time the two largest towns in Kenya, are wholly urban. These two counties are followed by Nakuru (45 percent), Isiolo (44 percent); Kajiado (41 percent); Uasin Gishu (39 percent); Kericho (38 percent); Migori (34 percent); Vihiga (31 percent) and Kilifi (25 percent). The rest of the counties have less than one-quarter of their populations living in urban areas. Meru, West Pokot and Narok are the least urbanised counties with less than 10 percent urban population (Kenya Republic, 2012).
The Kenya Vision 2030 anticipates that more than half of our nation’s population is going to be residing in urban areas following the current population trends. Thus, Kenya will need to plan for decent and high quality urban livelihoods for her population. The NSP creates a hierarchy of urban areas as national, regional and urban growth areas and anticipates the emerging metropolitan areas (MLHUD, 2016).
The housing shortage
One of the main problems that accompanies this rapid urbanization is a lack of adequate housing for the urban populations. In a press statement released in early 2016 by the Cabinet Secretary to the Ministry of Lands Housing and Urban Development, Prof. Jacob Kaimenyi, Kenya was found to be facing a major challenge in the housing sector. It was noted that the country is experiencing an annual housing deficit exceeding 250,000 units. So what does this portend? A bright future by way of more opportunities.
A number of opportunities present themselves. For example, it has been noted that there has been occurrence of rapid urbanization which is as a result of devolution and the realization of Vision 2030. Another opportunity is access of prime and virgin lands for housing which have provided a perfect opportunity for investors in the sector. Another opportunity is in the construction industry. Where land is being bought especially in urban areas, a housing or commercial development is usually in the offing. As noted in the NCA strategic plan 2012-2018, the construction industry is a key growth sector in Kenya economy and has consistently posted the second highest growth. The industry also offers direct employment to a significant proportion of the labour force spread throughout the country. The industry comprises of various ministries, construction material manufacturers and supplies, contractors, construction professionals, construction workers, transport providers in addition to related industry, banking and insurance sectors (National Construction Authority, 2012).
THE FUNDAMENTALS OF BUYING LAND OR A PLOT IN KENYA
Exercising formal due diligence while buying land in Kenya is as follows:
a) Preliminary land identification and informal due diligence
Under this step, a prospective buyer identifies a piece of land that meets their criteria including size, location, soil type etc. They need to have a clear picture of what they want, before starting the search. In doing so, they need to be aware that there are different kinds of properties i.e. agricultural land, residential, controlled development, commercial etc. They need to exercise some basic preliminary due diligence about the property, especially by using a government surveyor to verify the land dimensions. Government surveyors are available at the Ministry of Land Housing and Urban Development, at the County Level (Kituo Cha Sheria, 2015). As noted by Wahome (2014), Wanjiku (2016) and Boniface (2015) in their articles, land in Kenya is identified by Plot Number (P.N.) or Land Reference (L.R.) number. It is important that the prospective buyer exercises the preliminary informal due diligence personally by verifying the status of the Beacons on the land which they intend to purchase and by consulting professionals such as land surveyors and physical planners. If it is impossible to do that because of constrains beyond the control of the prospective buyer such as distance for foreigners and people working and living abroad, we can exercise the assessment on your behalf at a fee by capturing coordinates, taking pictures and videos, seeking relevant maps/plans and documentations and contacting relevant authorities as evidence.
From where I seat, your independent informal due diligence is adviced. A wordpress article by Legal Basics Kenya (2015), concures with this. So what do I mean by " independent informal due diligence"? Independent informal due diligence entails seeking information from informal sources such as people living in a particular area concerning lets say historical land injustices in that area, news coverage of a particular area concerning lets say security among other factors. Local leaders and elders or even the provinical administration i.e. the chiefs and their assistants can have more reliable information concerning land in a particular area.
As far as non-citizens are concerned, the Kenya Constitution 2010 allows them to own land in Kenya too. But on a leasehold basis. The lease expires after 99 years. They need to consult Article 65 clause (1) of the Kenya Cosntitution 2010 and law firms for interpretation before commiting their money to purchase any land. A little advice will go a long way here, "Do not leave any stone unturned".
b) Conduct a search at the lands registry
The next step is carrying out an official search at national level at the Ministry of Land Housing and Urban Development and the County Registry in which the land falls. The search will state the ownership and status of the land. To do a search, ask the seller for a copy of the title deed. You will then be required to fill a search application form and attach on it single copies of the title deed, ID card and PIN certificate and pay Kshs 500 at the Registry and get an official receipt. The search takes two to three days and is designed to give you the following information: the registered owner of the property, its size and any hindrances against the land such as court orders, caveats, cautions and loans taken against it, the title and search numbers, date the search was done, nature of title (freehold or lease), approximate area in hectares, name and address of proprietor and whether a title has been issued. A title with any unresolved issues of the above is not transferrable (Kituo Cha Sheria, 2015). The search results must be signed and sealed by the Registrar. If all is clear, then you may proceed to the next step which is writing a sale agreement (Kituo Cha Sheria, 2015). An article by Wahome (2014) seems to corroborate with this. He urges a prospecting buyer to conduct a search at either the Ministry Land Housing and Urban Development or at the County in which the land is located. Just as Kituo Cha Sheria, he points out that the search will reveal the true owners of the land in question, enable the buyer ascertain whether there are middle men involved in its sale and establish whether the title deed has been charged or has a caveat.
So why waste time and go out of your way to conduct all these checks yet there are other "important things" to do? Article 61 clause (1) of the Kenya Constitution 2010, proclaims that all land in Kenya belongs to the people of Kenya collectively as a nation, as communities and as individuals (Kenya, Republic, 2010). Clause (2) outlines the classification of land in Kenya as either public, community or private (Kenya, Republic, 2010). In conducting these checks, a prospecting buyer is able to verify that such land exists in reality and that it’s not public land, community land, a road or railway reserve, land earmarked for a major government infrastructural project or someone else's land some fellows are trying to sell you. A good example of such a scenario is a story of a kenyan athlete in Eldoret which surfaced late last year of how some "trusted" partner of his swindled him of his property.
c) Sale agreement
The next step is to individually or through your agent, or your advocate/solicitor/lawyer, engage the seller or his agent or lawyer/advocate/attorney/solicitor for purposes of tabling, discussing, and agreeing on sale terms and coming up with a Sales Agreement (Boniface, 2015). Make sure you read and understand (the English used) in the agreement before you append your signature on it.
According to Kituo Cha Sheria (2015), the sale agreement is prepared by the seller’s lawyer and it indicates the terms of sale including the names of the buyer and seller, price of the land, mode of payment and documents to be supplied by the seller to facilitate registration of the transfer of land to the buyer. In order that the process is above board, a the willing buyer appoints a lawyer to represent him/her in the signing of the sale agreement. At this point the buyer may be required to pay a 10% deposit (in form of cheque, banker’s draft) with the balance payable within 90 days after signing of sale agreement. After the parties have signed the sale agreement, the document must then be stamped to make it legally abiding. This stamp is two hundred shillings (Kshs. 200) for the original and twenty shillings (Kshs. 20) for the others Kituo Cha Sheria (2015). For further details concerning the payments, you can consult the Ministry of Lands Housing and Urban Development downloads page and check on the "Registration of transfer of land revised" document.
d) Transfer and procurement of completion documents
According to Kituo Cha Sheria (2015), the transfer document is usually prepared by the buyer’s advocate and approved by the seller’s lawyer. The seller is supposed to procure the completion documents at his costs, including the: original title deed, 3 copies of transfer of land duly completed by the seller, ID Card of certificate of registration of the seller and PIN certificate, 3 passport sized photos of seller (if company, photos of two of its directors) land rent clearance certificate (for leasehold land) rates clearance certificates, and consent to transfer and valuation form duly completed by the seller. The document should also be signed by the buyer who is also required to produce copies of his ID card, PIN certificate and passport photos.
e) Stamping the transfer
The buyer is required to apply for the valuation of the land by the government valuer using valuation form duly completed by the seller. Lands office will use these documents to determine stamp duty payable. The stamp duty should be paid to the Commissioner of Domestic Taxes through National Bank, Kenya Commercial Bank or any other appointed bank. Once payment is done, the buyer should lodge the documents at the lands office for stamping with duty. Thereafter the buyer should book the following documents for registration: title deed, land rent and rates clearance certificate, valuation report, consent to transfer, stamp duty declaration and pay-in-slip (Kituo Cha Sheria, 2015).
f) Registration of the transfer
This is the last process of the land purchase and it involves the registration of the transfer in favor of the buyer (Kituo Cha Sheria, 2015). However, Boniface (2015) advices that once the transfer has been completed, it is important that the buyer conducts a fresh search for the same property. This is just to ensure that this new search will reflect their name.
Kryptone Consulting Ltd offers the following services:
By Michael Jumba
In early times, when the population was still small and the land available to assimilate the wastes was large, waste disposal did not pose a problem. But when man began to form groups, villages and communities, wastes became a consequence of life that needed to be taken care of (UNEP, 2005).
Unfortunately, epidemics like the bubonic plague and many more fatal events had to happen before man realized that he had to properly manage the wastes he produced. From careless open dumping practices to engineered sanitary landfills, proper and effective solid waste management has evolved into what it is today and continues to transform as society evolves (UNEP, 2005). Open dumping is still the most prevalent method of waste disposal for many countries, most particularly the less developed ones. The foremost reasons for this practice are lack of knowledge and financial constraints. Nonetheless, it should not require another epidemic, sickness, or contamination before national and local governments give proper solid waste management the priority and urgency it deserves (UNEP, 2005).
What is waste?
Waste can be loosely defined as any material that is considered to be of no further use to the owner and is, hence, discarded. However, most discarded waste can be reused or recycled, one of the principles of most waste management philosophies. What may be of no further use to one person and regarded as waste to be dumped, may be of use to the next person, and is the basis of the rag picking trade, the sifting through of refuse at landfills for recovery and resale, a very fundamental historical waste management practice still functioning in many countries, often conducted on a highly organised commercial basis.
Waste is generated universally and is a direct consequence of all human activities. Wastes are generally classified into solid, liquid and gaseous. Gaseous waste is normally vented to the atmosphere, either with or without treatment depending on composition and the specific regulations of the country involved. Liquid wastes are commonly discharged into sewers or rivers, which in many countries is subject to legislation governing treatment before discharge.
In many parts of the world such legislation either does not exist or is not sufficiently implemented, and liquid wastes are discharged into water bodies or allowed to infiltrate into the ground. Indiscriminate disposal of liquid wastes pose a major pollution threat to both surface and groundwater. In this article we will focus on Municipal Solid Waste (MSW).
So what is Municipal Solid Waste (MSW)?
Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) is a type of non-hazardous solid wastes (with the exception of household hazardous waste) generated by households, businesses, institutions, and light industry (administrative, cafeteria, packaging, etc.), including ash from the combustion of MSW. Types of solid waste excluded from the definition of MSW are industrial process waste, construction and demolition debris, offal, sludges, tires, and ashes, except ashes from the combustion of MSW (National Renewable Energy Laboratory, 1995).
In another definition, Municipal Solid Waste (MSW), commonly called “trash” or “garbage,” includes wastes such as durable goods (e.g., tires, furniture), nondurable goods (e.g., newspapers, plastic plates/cups), containers and packaging (e.g., milk cartons, plastic wrap), and other wastes (e.g., yard waste, food). This category of waste generally refers to common household waste, as well as office and retail wastes, but excludes industrial, hazardous, and construction wastes (Center for Sustainable Systems, 2016). In many developing countries of which Kenya is a part, municipal solid waste disposal by open dumping is still under practice for reasons such as: ignorance of the health risks associated with dumping of wastes; acceptance of the status quo due to lack of financial resources to do anything better; lack of political determination to protect and improve public health and the environment; by traditions thus it is the oldest known way to handle MSW, just to fill a hole in the ground (Kurian et.al., Undated).
Municipal Solid Waste Management (MSWM)
Municipal solid waste management (MSWM) is an intricate process encompassing planning, engineering, organization, administration, financial and legal aspects of activities associated with generation, storage, collection, transfer and transport, processing and disposal of municipal solid waste (household garbage and rubbish, street sweepings, construction debris, sanitation residue etc.) (Shafqat et.al., 2014). Unfortunately, MSWM has not always been a high priority for local and national policy makers and planners, especially in developing countries. Other issues with more social and political urgency might take precedence and leave little budget for waste issues. Thus, in many cities around the world, effective, functioning policy measures have been elusive and the resources invested in the sector inadequate. National governments can make a critical contribution by making waste management a national priority (United Nations Environment Programme, 2013).
The collection of municipal solid waste is a public service that has important impacts on public health and the appearance of towns and cities. It is one of the important obligatory functions of any urban local authority. It refers to all activities pertaining to the control, collection, transportation, processing and disposal of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) in accordance with the best principles of public health, economics, engineering, conservation, aesthetics and other environmental considerations (Munala and Moirongo, 2011). Unfortunately many urban administrations seem to be losing the battle of coping with the ever-increasing quantities of waste. The challenge is made greater by the diversity of materials in the waste, which is no longer mainly food waste and ash, but includes more and more plastic packaging, paper and discarded electronic equipment (UN-HABITAT, 2011).
In low-income countries as well as many middle-income countries, MSW is the largest single budget item for cities and one of the largest employers (Hoornweg and Bhada-Tata, 2012). However, the failure to consider important parameters of each particular location has led to many failed systems and the wastage of huge sums of money. In many cases, collection vehicles and containers have been purchased in large numbers but they have not been effective and have been operational for only short periods that are much less than their expected design lives. In some cases unsuitable equipment has been purchased because of corruption, but in many cases the fault lies with the assumption that the same type of waste collection equipment will work effectively in any situation (UN-HABITAT, 2011).
Solid waste management is one of the most difficult environmental problems in the urban centres of developing countries, where services are often grossly deficient, especially within low-income settlements. Often these settlements comprise a sizable proportion of the city’s area and population – as much as half in some cases. Rapid urban growth, accompanied by the increasing density of population, traffic congestion, air and water pollution, increasing per capita generation of solid waste and the lack of land conveniently situated for waste disposal, all point to a rapid further aggravation of the already acute problems of solid waste management. Future demands are certain to increase as cities’ residential, commercial and industrial sectors expand and as economies develop (Coffey & Coad, 2010).
The MSWM problem in Kenya
It is worth noting that Kenya as a country has some of the best legislations, regulations, strategy and policy in the world in-so-far-as environmental management and MSWM is concerned. Some of the legislations are: the Kenya Constitution (2010), the Environmental Management and Co-ordination Act (EMCA)1999, the national environment policy 2013, NEMA waste management regulations of 2006, the Kenya Vision 2030, the National Solid Waste Management Strategy, the Environmental Management and Coordination (Impact Assessment and Audit) Regulations 2003, the Public Health Act Chapter 242 of the Laws of Kenya (revised 2012), the Occupational Safety and Health Act 2007, the County Governments Act 2012, The urban areas and cities Act 2011, and Local government Act (Cap 265).
The Environmental Management and Co-ordination Act (EMCA), 1999 is an Act of Parliament meant to provide for the establishment of an appropriate legal and institutional framework for the management of the environment matters.
Chapter four, part two section 42 of the Constitution of Kenya (2010) proclaims that every person has the right to a clean and healthy environment (Kenya, Republic, 2010). However, the situation on the ground is far from close to what is on paper. Municipal solid waste continues to be a major problem in our cities and rural towns.
According to the national environment policy 2013, 6.3.1 Inefficient production processes, low durability of goods and unsustainable consumption and production patterns lead to excessive waste generation. Despite efforts to encourage reuse, recycling and recovery, the amount of solid waste generated remains high and appears to be on the increase (Kenya, Republic, 2013).
The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) waste management regulations of 2006, are very explicit in matters waste generation, waste transportation, and waste disposal. For example, concerning responsibility of waste generators, no person shall dispose of any waste on a public highway, street, road, recreational area or in any public place except in a designated waste receptacle and any person whose activities generate waste shall collect, segregate and dispose or cause to be disposed off such waste in the manner provided for under the regulations. Concerning transportation of municipal solid waste, a person licensed to provide the service shall ensure that the collection and transportation of such waste is conducted in such a manner that does not cause scattering, escaping and/or flowing out of the waste and that they shall ensure that the vehicles and equipment for the transportation of waste are in such a state that shall not cause the scattering of, escaping of, or flowing out of the waste or emitting of noxious smells from the waste (National Environment Management Authority, 2006).
Despite the existence of laws and policies guiding waste management, weak implementation and poor practices have led to towns and cities being overwhelmed by their own waste, consequently affecting public health and the environment (NEMA, 2015). Evidence points to the direction that we are lacking in integrated municipal solid waste management.
What is integrated municipal solid waste management?
According to Kaluli, Mwangi and Sira (2011), Integrated solid waste management includes source reduction, source separation, recycling and reuse as well as materials recovery. The waste materials that remain should be safely disposed into a sanitary landfill.
Sanitary land filling is an important component of integrated waste management for safe disposal of the fractions of municipal solid waste (MSW) that cannot be reduced, recycled, composted, combusted or processed. However, about three-quarters of the countries and territories around the world use ‘open dumping’ method of disposal of MSW. It is a primitive stage of landfill development at which solid wastes are disposed of in a manner that does not protect the environment, susceptible to open burning, and exposed to disease vectors and scavengers. Lack of adequate waste treatment and disposal infrastructure, large volumes of waste involved in metropolitan cities, proximity of disposal sites to the water bodies and ever-burgeoning residential areas even in the proximity of waste disposal sites has given rise to significant environmental deterioration and health impairment in most of the cities (Kurian et.al., Undated).
Challenges facing MSWM in Kenya
This urbanization and increased affluence has led to increased waste generation and complexity of the waste streams. This trend is compounded by growing industrialization of the Kenyan economy. Despite the existence of laws and policies guiding waste management, weak implementation and poor practices have led to towns and cities being overwhelmed by their own waste, consequently affecting public health and the environment (NEMA, 2015).
In low-income residential areas where most services are unsatisfactory, residents normally give priority to water supply, electricity, roads, drains and sanitary services. Solid waste is commonly dumped onto nearby open sites, along main roads or railroad tracks, or into drains and waterways. Pressure to improve solid waste collection arises as other services become available and awareness mounts regarding the environmental and health impacts of poor waste collection service.
Poorly served residents often form community-based organisations (CBO) to upgrade local environmental conditions, improve services and/or petition the government for service improvements. CBOs which may arise in middle and upper income neighbourhoods as well as in low-income areas may become valuable partners of the government in local waste management. When sufficiently organised, community groups have considerable potential for managing and financing local collection services and operating waste recovery and composting activities (Schubeler, Wehrle, & Christen, 1996).
At the moment in Kenya, the involvement and engagement of these valuable stakeholders is still inadequate.
In addition to the problem, municipal decision makers do not give adequate priority to SWM. Instead, financial allocations go for staff salaries as the first priority, and what is left is spent on visible infrastructure projects. Very little is allotted to improving SWM services, varying between 1 percent and 30 percent of the total municipal budget depending on the size of the municipality (Zhu et.al, 2008).
Vehicles may be unreliable because they are not suited to the work they have to do or the conditions they work in, because they are driven carelessly or misused in other ways, or because they are not properly maintained. The reliability of vehicles can be measured in terms of their availability, which is the proportion of the time that they are available for service (UN-HABITAT, 2011).
While the NEMA waste management regulations of 2006 are very clear on the type of vehicles that are to be used for MSWM in Kenya, open vehicles that spread waste as they are driven are currently being used on our roads posing both environmental and health risks.
The Schubeler et.al., (1996) conceptual framework
The Schubeler et. al. (1996) conceptual framework provides brief definitions of the main concepts of MSWM and identifies the goals and principles that normally guide MSWM system development. The conceptual framework is structured along three principle dimensions, corresponding to the questions: What is the scope of waste management activities? Who are the actors and development partners in the field? and, How should strategic objectives and issues be addressed?.
According to the conceptual framework, the goals of MSWM are: to protect environmental health, to promote the quality of the urban environment, to support the efficiency and productivity of the economy and to generate employment and income. On the other hand, the principles of sustainable waste management strategies are: to minimize waste generation, to maximise waste recycling and reuse, and to ensure the safe and environmentally sound disposal of waste. Concerning the scope of waste management activities, Schubeler et.al. (1996) assert that within the overall framework of urban management, the scope of MSWM encompasses planning and management, waste generation and waste handling processes.
The conceptual framework describes the (Actors) in MSWM as a wide range of public and private sector stakeholders e.g. individuals, groups and organisations are concerned with MSWM as service users, service providers, intermediaries and/or regulators. Schubeler et.al. describe context as the prevailing political, socio-cultural, economic and environmental factors which determine the effectiveness and sustainability of MSWM systems.
Lastly, the conceptual framework discusses the strategic aspects of MSWM. These aspects may be understood as those portions of the context which are directly influenced and/or mobilised by waste management strategies. Development of sustainable MSWM systems implies that specific objectives be formulated and appropriate measures taken regarding a range of strategic aspects for example, enhancing technical capacity in MSWM.
Kryptone Consulting Limited has staff with adequate capacity to offer solid waste management solutions. In our MSWM business undertakings, we have operationalized the Schubeler et.al. model and the UN waste management hierarchy model to fit our clients' needs. Our services here are:
By Michael Jumba
In one of our earlier articles on this platform, "Marketing Research of march 1, 2017", we discussed how the business environment is full of uncertainty and the need for businesses to adapt to the ever changing environment if they are to continue to be relevant. One methodology of adapting to the ever changing business environment is through the use of social media and social media marketing (SMM).
According to Neti (2011), Social media is hot. Social Media is now the trend and for businesses, it represents a marketing opportunity that transcends the traditional middleman and connects companies directly with customers. This is why nearly every business on the planet-from giants like Starbucks and IBM to the local ice cream shop-are exploring social media marketing initiatives. Much like email and websites first empowered businesses social media is the next marketing wave.
Monica and Raluca (2014) explains that earlier on, consumers used the Internet for its content: they read it, they watched it, and they used it in order to purchase various products and services. Nowadays, things have changed. More and more consumers are utilizing content sharing sites, blogs, social networking and wikis-to create, modify, share and discuss Internet content. This represents the social media phenomenon, which can have an enormous impact on a business’ reputation, sales and on its survival in an environment getting fiercer and fiercer as days pass.
so what is social media?
Social media is engaging with consumers online. According to Wikipedia, social media is internet-based tools for sharing and discussing information among human beings. Social media is all about networking and networking in a way that espouses trust among parties and communities involved. Any website which allows user to share their content, opinions, views and encourages interaction and community building can be classified as a social media. Some popular social media sites are: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Digg, MySpace, StumbleUpon, Delicious, Scribd, Flickr etc (Neti, 2011).
The meaning of the term ‘social media’ can be derived from two words which constitute it. Media generally refers to advertising and the communication of ideas or information through publications/channels. Social implies the interaction of individuals within a group or community. Taken together, social media simply refers to communication/publication platforms which are generated and sustained by the interpersonal interaction of individuals through the specific medium or tool (Neti, 2011). Wikipedia has a general definition of the term: Social Media is the democratization of information, transforming people from content readers into content publishers. It is the shift from a broadcast mechanism to a many-to-many model, rooted in conversations between authors, people, and peers.
Social media uses the “wisdom of crowds” to connect information in a collaborative manner. Social media can take many different forms, including Internet forums, message boards, weblogs, wikis, podcasts, pictures, and video.
Social media is made up of user-driven websites that are usually centered on a specific focus (Digg = news) or feature (del.icio.us = bookmarking). Sometimes, the community itself is the main attraction (Facebook and Myspace = networking).
Social media are media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Social media uses web-based technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogues.
social media marketing and how it all begun
While some might think that the Social Media Marketing (SMM) is a new phenomenon, the reality is that Social Media Marketing is not such a new phenomenon. It did not begin yesterday or the day before yesterday. It is actually more than ten years old. The entire phenomenon began with the launch of LinkedIn in 2003. But since this is a network targeted mainly to businesses its popularity is much lower than that of the social networks dedicated to the public at large (Monica and Raluca, 2014).
LinkedIn was soon followed by MySpace and Facebook in 2004. The hysteria of sharing pictures, videos and thoughts online was augmented by the launch of YouTube in 2005 and of Twitter in 2006. These are the main players on the market. They are doubled by some minor ones like LiveJournal (highly popular among Russian speaking internet users), MyLife, MySpace, Reddit, Tumblr, Netlog (popular in Turkey, Europe and the Arab World), Pinterest and SumbleUpon. Google decided to enter the game in 2011 with its social network platform named Google Plus, better known to users as Google+. According to reports revealed in 2013, Google+ had 300 million monthly users; quite far from the 1.32 billion monthly active users reported by Facebook in June 2014 (Monica and Raluca, 2014).
Social media marketing is marketing using online communities, social networks, blog marketing and more. It's the latest "buzz" in marketing. The explosion of social media phenomenon is as mind boggling as that and the pace at which it is growing is maddening (Neti, 2011).
Trust and goodwill are the basis of social networking, and by marketing in the realm of social media these fundamental notions need to be adhered. It is probably the only marketing platform that encourages fool proof communication and accountability among sellers as well as consumers. Global companies have recognized Social Media Marketing as a potential marketing platform, utilized them with innovations to power their advertising campaign with social media marketing (Neti, 2011).
Evidence from online sources seems to suggest that, different industries are adopting social media marketing at different rates, and while many industries have started using social media marketing in their efforts to reach more customers, many still have not positioned it as their top priority.
Charitable organizations seem to have outpaced the business world and academia in their use of social media. A majority of the organizations are blogging. While a sizable chunk report social media as very important to their fundraising strategy. While these organizations are best known for their nonprofit status and their fundraising campaigns, they demonstrate an acute, and still growing, awareness of the importance of Social Media strategies in meeting their objectives.
Even though many businesses are still at the experimental stage-learning how best to use social media tools, evidence indicates that marketers think social media marketing is here to stay and will play an increasingly important role in their work in acquiring and retaining customers in the future.
Thus, it is not an exaggeration to say that social media marketing is already a vital part of the 21st century marketing mix. The absence of social profiles on the “Big Three” (Facebook, Twitter and Google+) would definitely be a strategic mistake for businesses which want greater exposure and popularity on the digital market.
In an era where technology prevails, entrepreneurs as well as marketers see the need to keep up with the fast pace of change or risk being outdated. Gone are the days when a pure-bricks business model would thrive well in current market scenario. It is practically impossible to design a marketing strategy without considering social networks. Social media has become an important ingredient in today’s marketing mix in general and in promotion mix in particular. Adapting some form of marketing online through social media is a key for all businesses-if they are to stay relevant.
relevance of social media marketing
The role of social media in marketing is to use it as a communication tool that makes the companies accessible to those interested in their product and makes them visible to those that don't know their product. It should be used as a tool that creates a personality behind their brand and creates relationships that they otherwise may never gain. This creates not only repeat-buyers, but customer loyalty.
In a 2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report 2010, a majority of marketers (56%) were using social media for 6 hours or more each week, and nearly one in three invested 11 or more hours weekly. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and blogs were the top four social media tools used by marketers, in order. A significant 81% of marketers planned on increasing their use of blogs. A majority of the marketers were employing social media for marketing purposes and small businesses were slightly more likely to use social media. 76% of marketers were spending at least 4 hours each week on their social media marketing efforts.
In the present context, it has increasingly become pertinent for companies to: (1) build a favorable base of consumers, and (2) involve them in decision making. Social media gives marketers a voice and a way to communicate with peers, customers and potential consumers. It personalizes the "brand" and helps you to spread the message in a relaxed and conversational way.
Adult beverage companies, exotic automobile manufacturers, pastry shops have been using social media tool. Pepsi Coke, Nokia and many of the top brands have effectively used social media for achieving their business objectives.
role of social media marketing
Social media is now increasingly becoming an ingrained aspect of political campaigns, national defense strategies, public policy, public relations, brand management and even intra company communication.
benefits of social media marketing
Significantly different from conventional marketing strategies, Social Media Marketing (SMM) offers three main distinct advantages. One, it provides a window to marketers to not only present products/services to customers but also to listen to customers’ grievances and suggestions. Two, it makes it easy for marketers to identify various peer groups or influencers among various groups, who in turn can become brand evangelist and help in organic growth of a brand. And, three, all this is done at nearly zero cost (as compared to conventional customer outreach programmes) as most of the social networking sites are free*(with the only thing paid for being the internet usage data bundle). For purposes of being specific, social media marketing helps in:
Why businesses need to consider social media marketing
At Kryptone Consulting Ltd, we have a team of dedicated individual who have the capacity to handle any social media marketing problem our clients might be facing. We offer the following solutions in the Africa cyber-territory:
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Bashar, A., Irshad, A., & Wasiq, M. (2012). EFFECTIVENESS OF SOCIAL MEDIA AS A MARKETING TOOL: AN EMPIRICAL STUDY. International Journal of Marketing, Financial Services & Management Research, 88-99.
Monica, B., & Raluca, B. (2014). Social Media Marketing to Increase Brand Awareness. Journal of Economics and Business Research, 155-164.
Neti, S. (2011). SOCIAL MEDIA AND ITS ROLE IN MARKETING. International Journal of Enterprise Computing and Business Systems, 1-16.
Wikipedia. (2017, March 5). Social Media. Retrieved from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_media
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By Michael Jumba
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and small and medium-sized manufacturing firms (SMFs) play a major role in countries at all levels of economic development with many acknowledging an increase in the proportion of SMEs and SMFs globally. It is predicted that the number of such entities will continue to grow, due to declines in manufacturing and growth in the service sector (Kobylanski and Szulc, 2011). As markets are becoming more global, many business opportunities are opening up for small and medium-sized businesses, but competitive pressure is increasing at the same time. They need to adjust their actions to the environmental challenges through active market development, a continuous search for market opportunities and expansion of their customer base. Many researchers and practitioners are looking to find the answer to the fundamental question as to why some organizations are more profitable with good perspectives for growth while others cannot achieve this feat (Kobylanski and Szulc, 2011).
The business environment is filled with a lot of uncertainty that come or may come in various forms. In addition to the everyday aspects of running a business, a company has to consider factors such as materials, energy shortages, inflation, economic recessions, unemployment, and technological changes. Increased competition in the global marketplace, the advancement of manufacturing technologies, and increasingly limited life cycle of products, have also greatly impacted product innovation strategies of the small and medium-sized manufacturing firms. A profitable company must respond to the market with its products and advertising (Smith and Albaum, 2012).
Another challenge that small firms are facing is that managers/owners often rely only on previous experience and common sense, because in their perception the boundary between marketing and selling becomes very blurred. One of the most important aspects that determine an organization’s market position is the entrepreneurs’ approach to market orientation and marketing actions. Small business managers’ attitude toward a structured approach to marketing can be seen as a sign of maturity and responsible decision making that can lead to a positive business performance. (Kobylanski and Szulc, 2011).
A substantial body of literature now highlights that there has been a fundamental and systematic change in the way small and medium-sized manufacturing firms SMFs undertake product innovation activities. Furthermore, use of external networks through collaboration and outsourcing has witnessed a substantial growth by the SMFs. External alliances and collaboration has become a cornerstone of the firm’s product innovation strategy by which we refer specifically to the use of outsourcing and strategic alliances to undertake product innovation.
The importance of external alliances in this sense is in relation to SMFs that lack the necessary resources and expertise to effectively manage the new product development process, from innovation to commercialization stages. Despite mostly having limited resources, SMFs need to overcome external barriers to growth by using external alliances if they are to continue to be relevant.
In order to be a successful entrepreneur one must adapt to the ever-changing business environment. A critical tool for measuring the market, staying competitive and adapting to the business environment is conducting rigorous marketing research (Smith and Albaum, 2012).
What is market research?
According to Smith and Albaum (2012), marketing research is about collecting information that will be used as evidence by decision makers to find solutions to business problems. Some of the business questions that are asked here are:
In simple terms that is to say, the solution to most business problems can be found through conducting marketing research. It is a search for information that will help you succeed in capturing your market share.
The focus of marketing research
Marketing research focuses on understanding the customer, the company, and the competition. These relationships are at the core of marketing research. Companies must understand and respond to what customers want from their products. However, this relationship is always influenced by competitors and how their products are received by your market. Thus, you must clearly identify the customer, company, and competition before developing a research project.
There are several important factors you must consider before you begin, including:
Methodologies of conducting marketing research
There are two main ways of going about marketing research; Fundamental research and Applied research.
Fundamental research seeks to extend the boundaries of knowledge in a given area and doesn’t necessarily solve your immediate problems. Nevertheless, it has useful applications. It reveals information and relationships that could be useful at a later date. For example, The PK company could conduct fundamental research about consumer preferences for certain combinations of chewing gum flavors under its label that differ in sugar type and strength of sweetness.
Applied research gathers information to solve a specific problem or set of problems. For instance, customers engaged in a blind taste test would respond with what they specifically liked or disliked about a new PK chewing gum product compared to a competitor’s product e.g Fresh chewing gum. This information could be used to tune your business plan, focus your advertising campaign, or improve your product.
Benefits of Market research
What we do for our clients
At Kryptone Consulting Ltd, we have a dedicated team of researchers: from fresh graduates who have just entered the job market to elite researchers who have over ten years experience conducting marketing research.
We specialize in finding creative and innovative ways to respond to our clients’ needs and challenges. The breadth and depth of our expertise allows us the flexibility to undertake a wide range of engagements. We provide solutions to match your needs.
We have business experience in the areas of automobile, agriculture, fast moving consumer goods, trade outlets, Information technology, Financial services, Travel & Tourism, Real estate among others.
We undertake the following types of studies;
Kobylanski, A., & Szulc, R. (2011). DEVELOPMENT OF MARKETING ORIENTATION IN SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES EVIDENCE FROM EASTERN EUROPE. International Journal of Management and Marketing Research, 51.
Royle, M. T., & Fox, G. (2011). THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PSYCHOLOGICAL STRAIN SELF-REGULATION, AND INFORMAL ACCOUNTABILITY FOR OTHERS. International Journal of Management and Marketing Research, 1.
Sen, A. K., & Haq, K. (2011). PRODUCT INNOVATION BY SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED FIRMS THROUGH OUTSOURCING AND COLLABORATION. International Journal of Management and Marketing Research, 63-73.
Smith, S. M., & Albaum, G. S. (2012). Basic Marketing Research: Volume 1. Utah: Qualtrics Labs, Inc.
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By Nichodemus Mwania
A baseline survey is a study that is done at the beginning of a project to get knowledge of the current status of an item of study before a project commences.
According to the Food Agricultural Organization, a baseline survey is a descriptive cross-sectional survey that mostly provides quantitative information on the current status of a particular situation – on whatever study topic – in a given population. It aims at quantifying the distribution of certain variables in a study population at one point in time. (FAO, 2013)
A baseline study is done after a decision to implement a project has been made. It is done to act as a benchmark for measuring project success or failure.
Baselines surveys are important to any project for they are the starting point for a project. A recommended way of starting a project is to carry out a baseline study. Through its results, a baseline serves as a benchmark for all future activities, where project managers can refer to for the purposes of making project management decisions.
Baseline studies are important in establishing priority areas for a project. This is especially true when a project has several objectives. The results of a baseline study can show some aspects of a project need more focus than other while others may only need to be given little focus.
Take for example a project on the awareness of HIV AIDS disease in Nairobi. A baseline study may show that while there is generally high public information on awareness of risk and prevention strategies, these strategies are either non-existent or inaccessible. In this case, project output would focus more on improving access to prevention strategies and little on doing media campaigns and community mobilization.
Without a baseline, it is not possible to know the impact of a project. A baseline study serves the purpose of informing decision makers what impact the project has had on the target community. Accordingly, along with other strategies such as use of control groups, it also helps in attributing change in the target population to the project.
Baseline tools are used for evaluation: the tools used during a baseline study are normally the same tools used during monitoring and evaluation of a project. This is important for ensuring that management compares the situation before the planned project and the aftermath of the project. As such, conducting a baseline means that time and other resources for designing evaluation tools are minimized or even eliminated altogether.
In most cases, it is a donor requirement that a baseline study is carried out as part of the program process. Since monitoring and evaluation is integral for any donor to establish future project success, they might, and always do compel implementing organizations to carry out baseline studies.
Baseline surveys should be carried out at the very beginning of a project and for obvious reasons. Any manager wants to ensure that any possible impact of a project is captured at the evaluation.
Where a baseline study is conducted after project activities have already been initiated, the accurate picture of the initial status cannot be reflected since the project is already having some impact, however little. It is therefore always best practice to conduct a baseline before project implementation.
If there is still a long way to go for the project and a baseline wasn’t conducted, managers can always consider conducting a study to act as a baseline. However, if at the end of a project there was no baseline study conducted, there are a few alternatives to consider for the purpose of measuring project success.
Previous studies on literature review may be used as baselines. Several studies are conducted by different agencies including national health surveys and environmental surveys. Project managers can always consider surveys that were conducted by other organizations at the project inception as baseline studies. For example, national HIV and AIDS surveys can act as baseline data and compared to end of evaluation results, for a project on such.
Another alternative for a baseline survey is to identify a group with homogeneous characteristics to the project target population and conduct a study on the two groups. The selected group then acts as a comparison group to measure success. The disadvantage of this strategy is that true homogeneity is usually very difficult to establish. As a matter of fact, it usually almost never exists.
Before conducting a baseline study, it is important to identify the indicators for the project. The indicators help in the designing of the questionnaire and also in determining evaluation indicators. The type of indicators could also dictate the type of data to collect and how the analysis of the data will be done.
Indicators should be set according to the SMART criteria: Specific to the objective; Measurable either quantitatively or qualitatively; Available at an acceptable cost; Relevant to the information needs of decision-makers; and Time-bound so that users know when to expect the objective or target to be achieved.
Indicators are linked to objectives and are expected to be achieved in the short-medium-long term. They should be based on objectives outlined in the national nutrition policy.
For example, indicators (clinical and biological) in the nutrition area; percentage of stunted children under three years (or under five years), percentage of wasted children under three years (or under five years), percentage of under-weight under three years (or under five years) etc.
Baseline indicators should come from officially recognized sources of information such as the national Population studies, the Health and Nutrition Surveys etc. Targets need to be established and agreed against these baseline indicators. The classification of baseline indicators according to age, gender, rural, urban, literate and illiterate divides can help highlight significant disparities and the setting of targets that aim to close the gaps.
The contribution towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and related Targets should also be acknowledged.
The study population is most often the project target population. Establishing the boundary so as to ensure the sample is only limited to the target population is important. Also related is the sampling procedure. The most common one is the simple random sampling. However, sometimes this is not possible because of various reasons, which might mean that a different sampling procedure is considered.
In some cases, it could necessary to involve other organizations in the baseline survey. This is especially viable if “similar” projects share a starting timeline and share a target group, most often by projects sharing a donor. This normally saves costs an increases confidence in the baseline results.
Availability of funds will dictate the intensity and scope of the baseline study. More funds might also mean that both quantitative and qualitative methods are adopted, while limited funds might imply that an organization only goes for quantitative methods.
When planning a baseline study, the implementing organization needs to determine both what change needs to be assessed and what sort of comparison(s) will need to be made as part of that assessment of change.
There are two common ways to measure change; ‘with and without’ activity – this seeks to mimic the use of an experimental control, and compares change in the activity location to change in a similar location where the activity has not been implemented, and ;before and after’ activity – this measures change over time in the activity location alone.
Basically, the purpose of a baseline study is to provide an information base against which to monitor and assess an activity’s progress and effectiveness during implementation and after the activity is completed.
The evidence of climate change in Kenya is unmistakable. Temperatures have risen throughout the country. Rainfalls have become irregular and unpredictable, and when it rains downpour is more intense. Extreme and harsh weather is now norm in Kenya.
In areas near large water bodies, the maximum temperatures have risen like other areas but the minimum temperatures have either not changed or become slightly lower.
As regards rainfalls the most visible feature is the increased variability year to year and during the year. There is a general decline of rainfall in the main rainfall season of March-May (the Long Rains). In other words, drought in the long rains season is more frequent and prolonged. On the other hand there is a general positive trend (more rains) during September to February. This suggests that the "Short Rains" (October-December) season is extending into hot January to February season.
What is zoning?
Zoning is the practice of allocating different areas of a Town, or City different uses. Zoning is an explicit and legal way of ordering land uses and is the basic tool of urban planning today. Through zoning, local governments have the legal obligation (police power given to them by state goveernments) to relate every piece of private property to all others and to be concerned about the health, safety and well being of the community (http://www.uwec.edu/geography/Ivogeler/w270/zoning-history.htm).
Zoning allows a local government to control and regulate the uses and characteristics of buildings, structures, and land within its boundaries. The authority for zoning is broadly based on a community's police power, allowing for the protection of the public's health, safety, and general welfare (http://archive.cityofpaloalto.org/knowzone/news/details.asp?NewsID=787&TargetID=239#introduction).
History of Zoning
In the United States
Types of zoning
There are several types of zoning codes in use today and combinations thereof. It is sometimes difficult to distinguish between the "types" of codes and their respective "formats" or "techniques", so all will be discussed here to some extent (http://archive.cityofpaloalto.org/knowzone/news/details.asp?NewsID=787&TargetID=239#introduction).
Single Detached Residential Zone
Neighbourhood Convenience Commercial Zone
Industrial Business Zone
Urban Services zones
Urban Service Zone
Benefits of zoning
What is an Indicator?
An indicator can be defined as follows:
Types of Indicators (Performance indicators)
This type of indicators measure the quantity, quality and timeliness of resources-human, financial and material technological and information provided for a project, program or activity.
These measure the progress of activities in a program or project.
Output indicators measure the quantity, quality and timeliness of the products (goods or services) that are the result of an activity, project or program.
They measure the intermediate results generated by programme outputs. Correspond to any change in people's behaviour as a result of project or program activities.
Characteristics of a good indicator
Objectively Verifiable Indicators (OVIs)
Objectively verifiable indicators are signs or signals demonstrating whether each level of the vertical logic is or is not being achieved.
They must be valid, reliable, precise, cost-effective and stated independently from other levels. They ought to make clear how the target group will benefit from the realisation of outputs. Indicators should be specific in terms of: Quantity, Quality, Time, Target group and place.
Examples of Indicators
Land use indicators
Surface water indicators
EIA is a systematic examination conducted to determine whether or not an activity or project will have any adverse impact on the environment. It is designed to Identify, Interpret, predict and communicate information about the impact of a project. It is a critical and objective examination of the impacts of a project on the environment before its implementation. The term impact describes both negative and positive environmental influences caused by a project.
Functions of E.I.A
Core values of E.I.A
Guiding Principles of E.I.A
Solid waste management operations are hazardous in nature involving high risks in terms of the employees getting injury and getting into contact with disease causing pathogens. This makes it important to put safety first before any task is performed to ensure operations run smoothly and with minimal or absence of safety incidents or accidents.
1.Safety Hats/ Helmets
3.Respirators and dust masks
6.Safety Eye protection
1. Safety Hats/Helmets
2. Ear Protection
3. Respirators and dust masks
4. Safety Coveralls
In Solid Waste Management coveralls are meant to:
5. Safety footwear
6. Eye protection
Eye protection is important in the following ways:
7. Safety gloves
Evaluations are divided into two broad categories:
1. FORMATIVE EVALUATION
Sometimes refered to as internal evaluation is a method of judging the worth of a project or programme while the project/ programme is in progress (Continual improvement). Helps the evaluators and project managers find out how well goals and objectives are being met. The main purpose is to identify deficiecnies resulting in the instigation of corrective measure hence ensuring that the project achieves its milestones and eventualy the targets. Employs more of qualitative methods of inquiry.
Examples where it can be applied are:
Questions that Formative Evaluation seeks to answer are:
2. SUMMATIVE EVALUATION
Takes place following project implementation (summation). Sometimes refered to as external, it is associated with more objective and quantitative methods with the focus being on the outcome. Some of the instruments used to collect the data are Questionnaires, Surveys, Interviews, Observations and Testings among others. Methodology used to gather data ought to be specified, carefully designed and carefully executed to guarantee accurate and valid data.
Can be applied on virtually all programs such as Health programs, Environmental programs, Educational programs, Humanitarian programs among others where the program managers and evaluators seek to find out their impact or whether their objecctives materilaised.
Examples of questions which summative evaluation seeks to answer are:
Most fires are preventable.Those responsible for workplaces and other buildings to which the public have access can avoid them by taking responsibility for and adopting the right behaviours and procedures. However, before we proceed with this discussion, it is important to understand the general fire safety hazards.
GENERAL FIRE SAFETY HAZARDS
Fires need three things to start - a source of ignition (heat), a source of fuel (something that burns) and oxygen.
Sources of ignition include:
Naked Flames, heaters, lighting, electrical equipment, smokers' materials (cigarettes, matches etc) and anything else that can get very hot or cause sperks.
Sources of fuel include:
Paper, wood, plastic rubber or form, loose packaging materials, waste rubbish furniture among other matrials.
Source of Oxygen is of course the air around us.
KENYA'S LEGISLATION ON FIRE SAFETY
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Act, 2007 of the Laws of Kenya, Safety provisions in the case of a fire, section 81.(9), 'Every occupier of a work place shall take effective steps to ensure that all persons employed therein are familiar with the means of escape in case of firem and with the routine to be followed in case of fire'.
Section 81.(1) of the same Law states that, 'In every workplace or workroom there shall be':
ACTION TO BE TAKEN
Employers, building owners and or occupiers must carry out fire safety risk assessments and keep them up to date. This shares the same approach as health and safety risk assessments and can be carried out either as part of an overall risk assessment or as a separate exercise.
Based on the findings of the assessment, building owners, employers and /or occupiers need to ensure that they provide adequate and appropriate fire safety measures to minimise the risk of injury or loss of life in the event of a fire.
To help prevent fire in the workplace, a risk assessment ought to identify what could cause a fire to start i.e. sources of ignition (heat and/or sperks) and substances that burn and the people who may be at risk.
Once the risks have been identified, appropriate action ought to be taken to control them. Consideration should be given to whether they can be avoided altogether or, if not possible, how they can be reduced and managed. Consideration should also be given to how people will be protected if there is a fire.
KEY POINTS TO REMEMBER
Some social scientists believe that accidents may reflect a person’s attitude towards life. They reason that frequent accidents are symptomatic of inadequate social adjustment. They state that as one’s person sense of social responsibility increases, the potential for accidents decreases correspondingly. The assumption is that as one lives by the internalized set of rules which govern one’s behavior in all activities. The more these rules reflect social irresponsibility the more likely it is that the individual will suffer an accident. This is quite relevant to the Kenyan Situation where both the government and the citizens don’t seem to care about fire safety management until when fires disasters occur.
Suchman theorized that rejection of social constraints leads to a higher incidence of accident injuries. He studied more than 1,500 high school and college students through personal interviews and written questionnaires. A significant relationship was found between accidents and characteristics commonly associated with social deviance. He reasoned that behavioral activities such as fighting and cheating on tests represented an attitude of social irresponsibility and could cause a person to be a high-risk candidate for accidental occurrences. (See figure below).
Kryptone Consulting limited Solid Waste Management operations may include in or preference, source reduction, reuse, recycling, composting, thermal reduction in incenerators, properly constructed landfill on site, local disposal in properly constructed landfill or incenerator or burn pit.
In executing Solid waste management operations, it is Kryptone's goal to employ all of the above options as applicable, with the resources and conditions at each site, while achieving service, environmental and ethical obligations. In application, Kryptone's goal is to reduce or eliminate (preferred) the use of burn pits, where possible. Burn pits are an expedient method to destroy and reduce the volume of solid waste (quick fix). However, burn pits lead to alot of air pollution.
All Solid waste must be sorted to remove non-combustible materials and prevent the release of hazardous/regulated waste. The most favourable Solid waste option is to reduce, reuse and/ or recycle waste. Waste that cannot be reused/recycled should be reduced in volume, such as through incineration, shredding or compacting (baling). The accepted waste disposal option is to landfill without volume reduction. Land farming or composting is recommended for biodegradable waste where possible. Such operations ought to be integrated with any nation building program.
Further information available on links below
Greenhouses are structures that enable the cultivation of fresh agricultural produce (such as fruits, vegetables, flowers, etc.) in qualities, quantities and time periods otherwise impossible to achieve when cultivating on the same region in the open.
The area of the greenhouse is separated from the outside environment by a transparent cover that lets sunlight through and provides a wide variety of services to the plants and to the farmer:
Depending on the natural environmental conditions, the type of crop, and the farmer's requirements, different technical solutions can be found to achieve the same goal.
Therefore, tropical regions usually have many greenhouses whose main function is to provide physical protection for the crops – to protect the plants from winds and natural harms, to protect against rain in order to control the irrigation and fertilization routine, and sometimes in order to overcome diseases and pests.
These designated greenhouses are usually simple and cheap structures, covered in thin plastic sheets, with set ventilation openings and without unnecessary means of monitoring and control.
Soil conservation efforts are mainly aimed at preventing soil erosion and keeping it conducive for plant growth. It is important to note that soil is one of the most important natural resources and hence the need to devise and implement ways of conserving it.
Plants meant for subsistence are at the base of a food pyramid and are crucial to the existence of life. Plants need soil for survival. Soil is one of the three main factors responsible for plant growth, the others being sunlight and water. Plants extract water and nutrients from the soil. So soil is an important constituent of the ecological system and its conservation is essential.
To conserve soil is to prevent it from being eroded and from losing its fertility due to alteration in its chemical composition. Planting trees and terracing are two of the best ways to prevent soil erosion. Similarly, certain farming practices like no-till and contour plowing help prevent loosening of the soil. Preventing pollution of soil helps maintain soil health, contributing to the conservation of this precious natural resource.
Ways to conserve soil
Plant grass and ground cover:
Bare ground and soils are frequently eroded by strong winds and heavy rainfall. The intact roots of lawn grass or ground cover will help retain the soil when these areas are exposed to strong winds and rains.
We all know that roots of trees firmly hold on to the soil. As trees grow, their roots also grow deep into the soil. As the roots of trees spread deep into the layers of soil, they hold it tightly, thus preventing soil erosion. Trees also act as wind barriers and breakers hence preventing the surface soil from wind erosion.
A terrace is a leveled section of a hilly cultivated area. Owing to its unique structure, it prevents rapid surface runoff of water. Terracing gives the landmass a stepped appearance, thus slowing the washing down of soil.
The process of preparing soil for plowing is known as tilling. No-till farming is a way of growing crops without disturbing it through tillage. The process of tilling is beneficial in mixing fertilizers in the soil, making rows and preparing the surface for sowing. But the tilling activity can lead to compaction of soil, loss of organic matter in the soil and the death of soil organisms. No-till farming is a way to prevent the soil from this harm.
This practice of farming on slopes takes into account the slope gradient and the elevation of soil along the slope. It is the method of plowing across the contour lines of a slope. This method helps in slowing the water runoff and prevents soil from being washed away along the slope. Contour plowing also helps in percolation of water in the soil.
Some pathogens tend to build up in soil if the same crops are cultivated again and again. Continuous cultivation of the same crop also leads to imbalance in the fertility demands of the soil. To save the soil from these adverse effects, crop rotation is practiced. It is a method of growing a series of dissimilar crops in an area. Crop rotation also helps in the improvement of soil structure and fertility.
Maintain Soil pH:
The contamination of soil by addition of acidic or basic pollutants and due to acid rains has an adverse effect on the soil pH. Soil pH is an indicator of the level of nutrients in soil. The uptake of nutrients by plants also depends on the pH of soil. Maintaining the correct value of soil pH, is thus essential for soil conservation.
Water the Soil:
We water plants, we water the crops, but do we water the soil? We seldom do. Watering soil is a good measure of soil conservation. Watering the soil along with plants growing in it is a way to prevent soil erosion caused by wind.
The salinity of soil increases due to excessive accumulation of salts in the soil. This has a negative effect on the metabolism of crops. The salinity of soil is detrimental to the vegetative life in it. The death of vegetation leads to soil erosion. Hence, salinity management is an indirect way of conserving soil.
Promote Helpful Soil Organisms:
Nitrogen-fixing and denitrifying bacteria are important constituents of the nitrogen cycle. They live in soil. Bacteria and fungi help keep the soil healthy. Organisms like earthworms help decompose organic material in the soil. They aid soil aeration and help it maintain porosity. Rodents too, help soil the same way. This increases the absorbing capacity of soil. Earthworms, through aeration of soil, enhance the availability of macronutrients. These helpful organisms boost soil fertility and help in soil conservation.
Grow Indigenous Crops:
Planting native crops is beneficial for soil conservation. If non-native plants are grown, fields should be bordered by indigenous crops to prevent soil erosion, thus achieving soil conservation.
More Tips to conserve soil
Mulch is a covering placed over soil to protect it from erosion and help the soil retain water content. Mulch also serves as a good source of nutrients for plants and helps them sustain in times of drought and dry weather. Mulching is a good practice for conservation of soil moisture.
Harmful gases and solid wastes that pollute air and water, also pollute land, rendering the soil infertile. Excessive deposition of salts in the soil makes it unsuitable for plant growth. In the absence of vegetation, soil is exposed to erosion due to wind and water. Good farming and gardening practices can help restore soil health and preserve this natural resource.
According to the Wikipedia, its a hundred years since the inception of Nairobi City by the British(1899) as a simple rail depot along the railway linking Uganda and Mombasa. The town quickly grew from a railway depot to the Capital of British East Africa in 1907. It became the capital city of Kenya after Kenya attained her independence in 1963. At the moment it is estimated that Nairobi has 3 million plus residents and the number is expected to grow due to high numbers of rural to urban migration. There are a number of reasons why people migrate to Nairobi and can be categorised into two: Push and Pull factors. Push factors are mainly Instability in certain regions in the country that cause people of these areas to run to cities for safety, Harsh climatic conditions in various regions in the country and unemployment in other areas of the country. Pull factors are: Services available in cities, infrastructure, better jobs, a sense of personal safety, Ready market for goods and services among others.
Since its inception Nairobi City has grown in leaps and bounds. However, this growth in most cases was never checked with adequate planning and enforcement of building regulations and by-laws; this has led to a lot of challenges. While developments continued and continue to sprout everyday and everywhere within the city, certain essential services, public utilities and amenities have and are at a constant a case in point is fire fighting equipment, stations and fire marshals. Below are the major challenges Nairobi City is facing:
Planning: Nairobi has been functioning and offering its services in the past 40 or so years without a master plan.The results of this are evident everywhere in the city; developments coming up without any clear order. Examples are 'estates' such as Githurai, Zimmerman, Kayole, Umoja, Dandora, Kangemi among many more.
Solid Waste management: Residents of Nairobi are literary walking on garbage and waste. During the early 90s and 80s going backwards, Waste management services offered by the city council were somehow effective. Dumpstars were located strategically in city estates and there used to be garbage collection tracks that used to empty the dumpstars once they were full and dispose them in a professional maner. During the mid 90s, those services gradually vanished including the dumpstars and garbage collection tracks. To date, there is no clear waste management system in Nairobi and its environs. Waste management was effectively left in the hands of the city residents. This has led to garbage pilling up in the middle of roads and anyone who feels like he/she can start a garbage collection business joins the bandwagon.
Sewerage and Liquid Waste: Nairobi is one city where most of its sewage and liquid waste either ends up in water bodies and/or rivers or it degrades the land. The only sewage system available is that which was left by the colonial administration. What is happening at the moment is that as new developments come up, they connect their sewage systems to the old one leading to over flows due to overloads. As a result, sewage freely flows into water bodies and on land contaminating everything wherever it flows with its pathogens.
Inadequate housing and informal settlements: For close to three decades now since BuruBuru and Kahawa West estates were constructed, The City Council of Nairobi has not made any substantial arrangement to ensure that it provides housing for the residents in the city. Private developers have taken advantage of this vacuum to make mega profits but still housing requirements are and have not been met. This has led to haphazard developments and proliferation of informal settlements.
Fire Safety: Nairobi is a city in dire need of fire safety measures. Fire Safety measure are not in place in most city suburbs and wherever they exist, they are either defective or inadequate. Most buldings in the city have not been inspected by qualified fire professionals hence are potential death traps in the event of fires.
Security: Due to the rapid urbanization taking place in Nairobi and the inability of the City Council of Nairobi and the Kenya government to provide services to the citizens Some essential services like security have been left behind. As a result, there is run way crime in various suburbs of the city. Although the crime is concentrated in the eastlands side of the city where residential populations at high density, No place in Nairobi is safe.
Public transportation within the city: During the early 90s when we had the Kenya Bus Services, transportation within the city was orderly. This order came to an end when public transportation was privatised and members of the public allowed to offer this service. This is when we saw commuter fares rise, road rage went up and general road disorder in the way public transport vehicles are painted, Loud deafening music, dangerous driving and the way touts handled passangers. Commuter trains are insignificant since their operation and services are undefined. Anyone who feels he/she has the resources and wants to venture into the transportation business has ventured into the business due to lack of regulation mechanisms. As a result there is heavy conjestion in virtually all city roads during peak hours in the form of traffic jams. The city roads are also very narrow and need to be increased in their widths so that they carrying capacity goes up.
Zoning: There are various types of zoning. Vertical, Horizontal and Zoning using population density. In Nairobi, there is no clear policy on development zoning and control and if present, they have and/or are not enforced. For example, neighbourhoods such as Kahawa West and Umoja that were zoned to be bungalows have been dostorted with four storey apartments.
That Nairobi's Thika 'Superhighway' was an ambitious project is not in doubt. Ambitious as it may have been, it turns out that the sustainability and objective of the project has had a lot of people asking questions. A few examples of the questions being asked are: What was the objective of the project?, and Is the project sustainable in the long-term?
Anyone who frequently uses this route has to agree that the 'superhighway' has really helped a great deal in terms of easing traffic jams. However, during peak hours-especially in the evenings after work, there are several 'traffic chock spots' on the 'superhighway' that if they had an alternative they would rather avoid at all costs. Starting from the outcasts going towards the city center these spots are: The Kenyatta University main gate area, The Kahawa Sukari underpass, The Githurai round about, Roy Sambu round about, The Ruaraka overpass and round about, The overpass by the GSU headquaters, The Pangani area underpass and finally the Globe round about.
It is becoming clearer by the day that during the road design stage, the issue of population density was either underestimated, pushed to the side or ignored all together by designer, engineers and planners. Areas where population density is high and the road passed through them or near by them, ought to have been designed with feed roads and exit roads whose widths were wider than they currently are to ensure that the high number of vehicles using them were adequately catered for therefore reducing traffic jams. For instance, the notorious 'chock spot' of Roy Sambu ought to have been designed in such a way that flow of traffic in and out of the freeway is continous and not compromised as currently is.
Another important issue that ought to have been given priority during the design stage is the issue of rogue public service vehicles (PSVs). The outer lanes on both sides of the 'superhighway' should have been designed so that their widths are wider enough to take care of the reckless driving by this vehicles. Because the outer lanes on both sides of the 'superhighway' are always prone to being chocked by traffic and obstructions by indsciplined PSV drivers; the same PSVs have made it a habit to use the freeway then pull over right on the freeway and drop passangers there. This is tranfering the problem from the side lanes to the freeway and this will soon spell disaster.
Just a year after the project was commissioned, sections of the road have been vandalised by goons who like working under the cover of darkness. Street lights, Safety signs and some road barriers have gone missing courtesy of this guys. If this can happen in a year, what should we expect five years after the project was commissioned?
To sum up, Thika superhighway was an ambitious project; A project which some argue came way too early before its time. Others say the Kibaki government misplaced its priorities by implementing a project of such a magnitide while most roads in the country are in a dilapidated state. International media like CNN termed such projects as 'African fantasies' since they tend to focus on irrelevance while a majority of Africans survive on less than a dolar a day. If the issues of road discipline, vandalism and road courtesy are not taken seriously with regard to Thika superhighway, then what was thought to be a noble solution to an urbanization problem that Nairobi city faces will end up being a worse problem. This will in turn prove that the pessimists were right.
Climate Change is a major environmental problem facing the globe today. It is decribed as a significant and lasting change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods ranging from decades to millions of years. a change in global climate patterns apparent from the mid to late 20th century onwards, attributed largely to the increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the use of fossil fuels.
It may be a change in the average weather conditions or a change in the distribution of weather events with respect to an average, for example, greater or fewer extreme weather events. Climate change may be limited to a specific region, or may occur across the whole Earth.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), there are seven indicators that are increasing and would be expected to increase in a warming world, they are: Humidity; Atmospheric Temperature; Sea surface temeperature; Sea level; Ocean Heat Content; Temperature over oceans, and; Temperature over land.
Three indicators are decreasing and would be expected to decrease even more, they are: Sea ice; Glaciers, and; Snow cover.
The recent Westgate mall attack perpetrated by the Al shabaab terrorists of Somalia has brought to the fore the status of safety, security and security apparatus in Kenya. People from diverse backgrounds; Muslims, Hindus and Christians alike, the young and the old were massacred in cold blood in the name of revenge by a terrorist gang that had warned Kenya long enough of impending attacks after Kenya decided in the October of 2011 to send its troops into Somalia in what was called "Operation protect the nation." Property of unknown value was destroyed and the longterm effect on the economy is going to be negative. This brings us to the following burning questions:
Questions that still linger over the Westgate mall attack:
The bottom line:
Following the events that unfolded on the fateful day and the way the country's security forces responded, it is clear that our security forces are ill trained, ill equipped, ill remunerated and this makes them react to security situations. Should we choose to continue this way, then we'll continue to lose innocent lives and hard earned property and this will affect the economy negatively. One sign of a failed security system is the inability to act on intelligence and surveillance data on time in order to identify and detect criminals before they commit their crimes.
Since the attack, there has been no serious action to ensure there is safety and security in this country- all we hear in the media is pure 'lip service' and the call for every Kenyan neighbours to know one another. Only time will tell if measures were taken to prevent a repeat of such an event but for the moment, "Be vigilant because you are your own security".
What is Sustainable Development (SD)?
The most frequently quoted definition of Sustainable Development is from Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland Report: Sustainable development is "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."
It contains within it two key concepts:
Thus the goals of economic and social development must be defined in terms of sustainability in all countries - developed or developing, market-oriented or centrally planned. Interpretations will vary, but must share certain general features and must flow from a consensus on the basic concept of sustainable development and on a broad strategic framework for achieving it.
Development involves a progressive transformation of economy and society. A development path that is sustainable in a physical sense could theoretically be pursued even in a rigid social and political setting. But physical sustainability cannot be secured unless development policies pay attention to such considerations as changes in access to resources and in the distribution of costs and benefits. Even the narrow notion of physical sustainability implies a concern for social equity between generations, a concern that must logically be extended to equity within each generation.
The Concept Sustainable Development focuses on the following:
Objectives of this article are:
This is an assessment conducted with purpose of providing an analytical framework for rating the ability to monitor and evaluate progress in achieving designated goals.
One way of conducting a readiness assessment is by determining the roles and responsibilities of your M&E team. for instance:
Capacity Building requirements
"If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there." (Alice's adventures in Wonderland Lewis Carroll 1865).
In order not to wonder in wonderland and having completed the details in step one, it is of importance for the M&E team to gather and agree on a set of outcomes that will be used in the evaluation process.
It involves identiifying problems and issues of concern then
turning them to positive outcomes.
It is important that every member of the M&E team participates in this process. Two, Three, Four Heads are better than one.
It is this set of outcomes that will determine the direction that the M&E will take.
The process of setting and agreeing on outcomes involves the following:
Step 3: Selecting Key Performance indicators to Monitor Outcomes
Baseline: The first measurement of an indicator
Targets are specified objectives that indicate the number, timing and location of that which is to be realized.
The following factor will aid in target selection:
Step 7: The "E" in M&E-Using Evaluation to support a result based management system
Evaluation and Monitoring are complimentary to each other in that in order for an M&E specialist to get good data for evaluation, all data gathered during monitoring ought to be considered. All monitoring leads to an overall assessment of your project which is the evaluation part.
Evaluation is not restricted to assessing causes and changes after intervention or initiatives are over. It is a process usually done at the end of a project. However, there are different methodologies of evaluation. You can opt to undertake it at the begining of a project, in the middle of the project and at the end of the project.
Evaluation process provides the following information:
Pragmatic uses of evaluation
M&E reports are used to:
Presentation of Data in clear and understandable form
There are variuos ways findings can be used. The following are ten ways of how evaluation findings can be used:
Step 10: Sustaining the M&E system within an organization
Six critical components of sustaining effective M&E systems
The dangers of UV rays are well known. Protection of your eyes and wearing proper eye protection is is very important for the safety of an individual and or employees.
Sunglasses should be worn when an individual or employee is outdoors in order to protect their eyes from damaging UV rays. Mounting evidence shows that exposure to UV rays can lead to cataracts, mascular degradation or skin cancer around the eyelids. Below are factors to consider whe choosing eye protection: