Manish Chandi

Alumnus, Oceans and Coasts


M.A., Ph.D.

Manish Chandi works in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands on the interface between communities and the natural environment.  He completed his doctoral thesis in 2007 with the Oceans and Coasts programme in which he explored the impact of the 2004 earthquake and tsunami on community sharing mechanisms in the Nicobar Islands. He is currently associated with the Andaman and Nicobar Environment Team (, although he continues to collaborate actively with NCF. 




Kitchen Stories

Understanding how Nicobar communities share resources in the wake of the tsunami

Koomati 20hut


People of the rainforest

Tribal communities in the rainforests of the Anamalai hills


  • Journal Article
    Sharing mechanisms in corporate groups may be more resilient to natural disasters than kin groups in the Nicobar Islands
    Human Ecology. 43:709-720

    It has been suggested that kin groups are better predisposed to cooperatively manage essential natural resources than non-kin groups because of inclusive fitness gains. Whether these long-term genetic pay-offs sufficiently offset the immediate costs of cooperation in periods of scarcity is uncertain. We compared patterns of resource sharing across three island communities in the Nicobar Archipelago affected by the 2004 tsunami. While sharing mechanisms were similar across regions, group composition varied: Central and Southern Nicobar were organised along kinship lines, while Chowra was organised as corporate alliances of unrelated households. We documented post-tsunami losses and conflicts emerging in resource sharing after the event. While kin groups showed considerable breakdown in resource sharing arrangements, corporate communities in Chowra were much more resilient to change. Our results suggest that the more immediate reciprocity of corporate alliances may outweigh the potential benefits of inclusive fitness when faced with conditions of extreme resource scarcity.

  • Report
    Tribes of the Anamalais: livelihood and resource-use patterns of communities in the rainforests of the Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary and Valparai plateau.
    NCF Technical Report No. 16, Nature Conservation Foundation, Mysore.

    PDF, 1.5 MB

    The Western Ghats hill range of India, recognised as a global biodiversity hotspot, also contains impressive cultural diversity including a number of tribal communities. This study uses past records and primary field research to describe aspects of ethnic identity, social change, demography, livelihoods, and resource use among three tribal communities in the Anamalai hills along the Western Ghats mountains of southern India. Kadar, Muthuvar, and Malai Malasar communities across 190 households in 8 settlements located adjacent to rainforests in the Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary were studied to examine current modes of existence vis-à-vis their past and the use of rainforest patches they live within. (Download PDF to read more)

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