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Compatible with Conviviality? Exploring African Ecotourism and Sport Hunting for Transformative Conservation
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Stockholm Resilience Centre.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7657-3102
2023 (English)In: Conservation and Society, ISSN 0972-4923, E-ISSN 0975-3133, Vol. 21, no 1, p. 38-47Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Recent decades have shown the increased popularity of market-based instruments (MBIs) for conservation despite mixed social and ecological outcomes. This paper explores the extent to which two crucial MBIs, namely, ecotourism and sport hunting, are compatible with 'convivial conservation', a novel, integrated approach that explores conservation beyond capitalism. We developed an analytical framework of five key features for transformative change that can potentially contribute to conviviality: access and property rights, benefit-sharing, value operationalisation, institutional arrangements, and decision-making processes. We analysed the use of ecotourism and sport hunting in southern and eastern Africa in relation to the five features. Based on 'radical incremental transformation', we applied these features to analyse if, and if so how, incremental changes to these MBIs can be supportive in transitioning conservation towards (further) conviviality. With insights from our extensive research experiences in eastern and southern Africa, we highlight that the institutional design and contextual factors determining power relations are often more important than the choice of instrument in influencing its social and ecological outcomes. In conclusion, we propose a shift in the dialogue on conservation beyond its infatuation with commodification by integrating convivial elements into the design of conservation policies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023. Vol. 21, no 1, p. 38-47
Keywords [en]
Benefit-sharing, Conviviality, Institutions, Market-based instruments, Transformation
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Research subject
Sustainability Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-200662DOI: 10.4103/cs.cs_42_21ISI: 000933490000004Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85149653975OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-200662DiVA, id: diva2:1625893
Available from: 2022-01-10 Created: 2022-01-10 Last updated: 2023-03-29Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Safeguarding nature and people: Integrating economics, politics, and human rights to transform biodiversity policies and governance
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Safeguarding nature and people: Integrating economics, politics, and human rights to transform biodiversity policies and governance
2022 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

None of the world’s biodiversity goals from the last decade were fully met, as biodiversity losses are occurring at an unprecedented rate. Policies are not always effective; their use may have adverse effects on people and nature. Biodiversity offsets are an example of a policy that can be used to protect and restore biodiversity loss from economic development. Yet, offsets have been criticized for poor ecological outcomes, commodifying nature, and creating social inequality. To address this challenge, we need to learn from the shortcomings of biodiversity policies and governance as new goals are being drafted under the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.

This thesis examines how biodiversity policies can be designed and implemented for effective and equitable outcomes for people and biodiversity. I focus on the design (Paper I) and implementation (Paper II) by examining economic instruments in conservation. I then broaden to the governance landscape by analysing the implementation of policies in national (Paper III) and international regulatory contexts (Paper IV).

The 4 papers cover a diversity of cases across the globe at different governance levels. Paper I conducted a policy analysis of offsets from six countries (Australia, England, Germany, Madagascar, South Africa, and the US), through an economic framing of biodiversity trading and institutional arrangements. Paper II reviewed market instruments for conservation, ecotourism and sport hunting in eastern and southern Africa, to analyse whether these instruments can be compatible with new ideas for conservation such as conviviality. Paper III investigated the politics around Mekong hydropower development, through multi-stakeholder interviews and a discourse analysis of the social and environmental impacts of a dam in Laos. Paper IV examined the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and how review mechanisms of human rights law can improve compliance.

This thesis highlights that a human rights-based approach provides important conceptual and political support for biodiversity governance. It contributes to the science-policy interface with these insights. First, the institutional design and implementation are as important for the outcomes as the type of policy. In economic policies such as offsets, a high involvement of the market does not influence the level of commensurability, but increases the degree of commodification. Second, the contextual factors (politics and power relations) of policies should be acknowledged to address inequality. An institutional design and implementation that ensures meaningful participation and a balance of power is crucial for effective and equitable outcomes. Review mechanisms used in human rights help to navigate power inequities, by ensuring that all rights-holders have a substantial voice.

Third, offsets can be designed with different institutional arrangements (state, market, voluntary). If a market approach is chosen with biodiversity trading, effective monitoring and regulation is needed to safeguard biodiversity. Lastly, to foster compliance with policies, management and enforcement approaches can be used in a complementary manner through positive incentives, sunshine methods, and negative incentives. Overall, this thesis provides insights of how to meet our global goals for protecting and restoring biodiversity, while safeguarding people and nature.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University, 2022. p. 53
Keywords
global environmental governance, human rights review mechanisms, biodiversity offsets, commensurability, commodification, economic instruments, transformations, Convention on Biological Diversity, compliance, safeguards
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Sustainability Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-200666 (URN)978-91-7911-752-8 (ISBN)978-91-7911-753-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2022-02-24, Vivi Täckholmsalen (Q-salen), NPQ-huset, Svante Arrhenius väg 20 and online via Zoom, public link is available at the department website, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 2016-01556
Available from: 2022-02-01 Created: 2022-01-11 Last updated: 2022-02-25Bibliographically approved

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Koh, Niak Sian

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