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1 September 2015 People and Protected Areas: Understanding Attitude Alignment for More Effective Conservation
Charlotte E. L. Whitham, Shi Kun, Philip Riordan
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When the attitudes of local people towards wildlife and conservation are not aligned with those of other stakeholders, significant conflicts can result, potentially undermining conservation efforts. We collected attitudinal data from 171 local people and 59 governmental staff from a Nature Reserve in southwestern China. These attitudinal questions covered key topics of ecosystem services, protected areas and human-wildlife coexistence. Statistically significant (p<0.05) similarities of responses between local people and staff were identified and the nature of any disparity was investigated. The majority of attitudes relating to protected areas (60%) and coexistence (100%) were statistically similar between the two groups, unlike 25% of responses relating to ecosystem services. Few characteristics of staff were statistically associated with their attitudes, whereas responses from local people were frequently associated with sub-village. Such attitudinal studies inform recommendations that consider the potential for future conflicts that might persist following attitudinal disparity between two key stakeholders.

Charlotte E. L. Whitham, Shi Kun, and Philip Riordan "People and Protected Areas: Understanding Attitude Alignment for More Effective Conservation," Journal of Resources and Ecology 6(5), 281-292, (1 September 2015).
Received: 18 March 2015; Accepted: 1 August 2015; Published: 1 September 2015
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