Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE)

Establishing a Long Term System
for Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE)

4. Costing

A full analysis of costs is provided in Annex 5 and summarised below. The assumptions on which the current costings have been based are as follows.

4.1 Assumptions

The costs of the MIKE system have been derived under the major headings of:

1 set-up costs
2 population surveys
3 data collection and compilation
4 technical support and data processing, reporting and audit
5 capacity building.


4.1.1 Set-up costs

At the site and national level, costs assume existing office accommodation and furnishing. The provision of computing equipment and power supply (as needed) for all site data collection officers, national and sub-regional compilers and full set-up costs for the central data processing unit, including staff recruitment costs, have been included. Costs of outfitting survey teams are included in the population survey component.

4.1.2 Population surveys

It is intended that population surveys, either by ground or aerial methods, will be conducted every other year in the 45 MIKE sites in Africa and the 15 sites in Asia. Costs have been estimated according to the type of count, the area that must be covered and the designated sampling intensity to be applied.

For each scenario, the sites were categorised according to type (savannah or forest) and survey method (aerial sample, aerial total, ground, dung). For each survey method, a cost per square kilometre was built up from the appropriate cost elements such as staff costs, equipment, rations, fuel, aircraft or vehicle hire, number of transects surveyed, etc. The total field data collection costs therefore are based on the product of total transect survey length and survey cost per linear kilometre.

For sample counts in Africa, costs have been based on a sampling intensity of 21%, which is considered to give results of the highest confidence level (Said, et al. 1995) under conditions in Africa. Direct ground sample counts in Asia are based on sampling intensity of 30%, using techniques previously documented to census elephants in Asian habitats (Karanth and Sunquist, 1992; Varman and Sukumar, 1995), while dung counts in Asian sites are based on sampling intensity of 40% (Dawson and Dekker 1991; Varman et al, 1995).

This takes no account of logistical questions regarding the number of teams in the field, nor of the presence or otherwise of survey capability in any given location.

4.1.3 Data collection and compilation

No new staff appointments are assumed. Rather, the project would contract and finance existing government or NGO staff or members of the AfESG/AsESG to collect and compile the required data.

For Africa, at the site level, 50% of one person's time is assumed, and 25% at the national, sub-regional or regional (Asia) level. For the purpose of this proposal, costs have assumed to be uniform throughout the Africa region.

In Asia, one full-time staff person would be assigned as the site officer at each of the 15 sites as well as full time positions for national and sub-regional compilers

The costings have been calculated on the basis of the following human resource requirements.





Number of data collection officers (on site):



Number of national compilers:



Number of sub-regional compilers:




A provision for team training has been included in the budget for Capacity Building.


4.1.4 Technical support, data processing and reporting

The costs of maintaining this unit were based on staff costs of three full time employees (assumed two expatriates recruited and one hired locally) plus typical office running costs in Nairobi, Kenya. Costs such as co-ordination, travel, attendance at meetings, report production and distribution, and external audit have also been included in this component.

4.1.5 Capacity building

The costs are based on six sub-regional workshops per year, employing a specialist consultant for up to one month each time, and up to 12 national or site-based workshops per year. In practice, it may be possible to run some of these workshops in conjunction with other scheduled meetings.


4.2 Annual cost estimates for three scenarios in Africa

Summaries for annual recurrent budgets for the three scenarios examined are shown below. A full breakdown of these budgets is provided in Annex 5. All figures are quoted in US$ unless otherwise specified.

TABLE 1. Estimated annual recurrent costs for sampling in Africa and Asia.



For 60 sites

Population surveys


- survey/count expenses incl. staff costs, equipment, provisions, fuel aircraft charges, etc.



Data collection and compilation


- staff cost contributions/consultancy fees for site officers and compilers, equipment, communication and reporting



Technical support and data processing unit


- staff costs, office running costs, report production and distribution, travel and meetings, external audit



Capacity building


- consultancy fees and travel, workshop expenses, training materials, participants' travel and expenses



Total (US $$)



4.3 Estimated overall costs for preferred Scenario 3


As Scenario 3 provides the best level of precision, at a relatively advantageous cost, in addressing the requirements of the Parties (see Annex 1), the following summary costs are presented for this scenario only. Table 2 outlines fixed, one-off set-up costs and annual recurrent costs for operations in Years 1-6. Annual recurrent expenditure increases have been assumed at an average of 5% per annum.

TABLE 2. Budget for Years 1 through 6, including set-up costs.


Set-up costs Annual recurrent costs Refit costs Total system costs
  Yr. 1 Yrs. 2-6 Yr. 3/4  
742,383 2,353,597 9,930,753 334,814 13,361,547


Table 3, below, provides a breakdown of the expenditure in a survey year by sub-region for Scenario 3. The percentage breakdown for each sub-region includes survey costs, equipment costs, data collection and compilation costs, technical support and data processing unit/reporting costs as well as capacity building.



Breakdown of annual recurrent expenditure for Scenario 3, by sub-region for Year 1.





East Africa



Central Africa



West Africa



Southern Africa



South Asia



Southeast Asia






5. References
3. Description of the proposed long term monitoring system (MIKE)