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The importance of tangible and intangible factors in human–carnivore coexistence

Jacobsen, Kim S., Dickman, Amy J., Macdonald, David W., Mourato, Susana ORCID: 0000-0002-9361-9990, Johnson, Paul, Sibanda, Lovemore and Loveridge, Andrew (2021) The importance of tangible and intangible factors in human–carnivore coexistence. Conservation Biology, 35 (4). pp. 1233-1244. ISSN 0888-8892

Full text not available from this repository.

Identification Number: 10.1111/cobi.13678

Abstract

Conflict with humans is one of the major threats facing the world's remaining large carnivore populations, and understanding human attitudes is key to improving coexistence. We surveyed people living near Hwange National Park about their attitudes toward coexisting with lions. We used ordinal regression models with the results of the survey to investigate the importance of a range of tangible and intangible factors on attitudes. The variables investigated included the costs and benefits of wildlife presence, emotion, culture, religion, vulnerability, risk perception, notions of responsibility, and personal value orientations. This was for the purpose of effectively tailoring conservation efforts but also for ethical policy making. Intangible factors (e.g., fear and ecocentric values) were as important as, if not more important than, tangible factors (such as livestock losses) for understanding attitudes, based on the effect sizes of these variables. The degree to which participants’ fear of lions interfered with their daily activities was the most influential variable. The degree to which benefits accrue to households from the nearby protected area was also highly influential, as was number of livestock lost, number of dependents, ecocentric value orientation, and participation in conflict mitigation programs. Contrary to what is often assumed, metrics of livestock loss did not dominate attitudes to coexistence with lions. Furthermore, we found that socioeconomic variables may appear important when studied in isolation, but their effect may disappear when controlling for variables related to beliefs, perceptions, and past experiences. This raises questions about the widespread reliance on socioeconomic variables in the field of human–wildlife conflict and coexistence. To facilitate coexistence with large carnivores, we recommend measures that reduce fear (through education and through protective measures that reduce the need to be fearful), reduction of livestock losses, and ensuring local communities benefit from conservation. Ecocentric values also emerged as influential, highlighting the need to develop conservation initiatives tailored to local values.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 Society for Conservation Biology
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2024 17:24
Last Modified: 21 Jun 2024 07:00
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/121173

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