The role of Indigenous peoples and local communities in effective and equitable conservation

Dawson, Neil M., Coolsaet, Brendan, Sterling, Eleanor J., Loveridge, Robin, Gross-Camp, Nicole D., Wongbusarakum, Supin, Sangha, Kamaljit K., Scherl, Lea M., Phan, Hao Phuong, Zafra-Calvo, Noelia, Lavey, Warren G., Byakagaba, Patrick, Idrobo, C. Julián, Chenet, Aude, Bennett, Nathan J., Mansourian, Stephanie, and Rosado-May, Francisco J. (2021) The role of Indigenous peoples and local communities in effective and equitable conservation. Ecology and Society, 26 (3). 19.

[img]
Preview
PDF (Published Version) - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (1MB) | Preview
View at Publisher Website: https://doi.org/10.5751/ES-12625-260319
 
56
154


Abstract

Debate about what proportion of the Earth to protect often overshadows the question of how nature should be conserved and by whom. We present a systematic review and narrative synthesis of 169 publications investigating how different forms of governance influence conservation outcomes, paying particular attention to the role played by Indigenous peoples and local communities. We find a stark contrast between the outcomes produced by externally controlled conservation, and those produced by locally controlled efforts. Crucially, most studies presenting positive outcomes for both well-being and conservation come from cases where Indigenous peoples and local communities play a central role, such as when they have substantial influence over decision making or when local institutions regulating tenure form a recognized part of governance. In contrast, when interventions are controlled by external organizations and involve strategies to change local practices and supersede customary institutions, they tend to result in relatively ineffective conservation at the same time as producing negative social outcomes. Our findings suggest that equitable conservation, which empowers and supports the environmental stewardship of Indigenous peoples and local communities represents the primary pathway to effective long-term conservation of biodiversity, particularly when upheld in wider law and policy. Whether for protected areas in biodiversity hotspots or restoration of highly modified ecosystems, whether involving highly traditional or diverse and dynamic local communities, conservation can become more effective through an increased focus on governance type and quality, and fostering solutions that reinforce the role, capacity, and rights of Indigenous peoples and local communities. We detail how to enact progressive governance transitions through recommendations for conservation policy, with immediate relevance for how to achieve the next decade’s conservation targets under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity.

Item ID: 70578
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1708-3087
Keywords: Biodiversity conservation, Customary tenure, Environmental justice, Environmental stewardship, Equity, Governance, Human rights, Institutions, IPLC, Protected areas, Tenure security, Traditional ecological knowledge, Well-being
Copyright Information: Copyright © 2021 by the author(s). Published here under license by The Resilience Alliance. This article is under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. You may share and adapt the work for noncommercial purposes provided the original author and source are credited, you indicate whether any changes were made, and you include a link to the license.
Date Deposited: 09 May 2022 06:19
Downloads: Total: 154
Last 12 Months: 6
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page