HUMAN DIMENSIONS OF
WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT (HDWM)
M. Nils Peterson and Shari L. Rodriguez
Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology Program
Department of Forestry & Environmental Resources North
Carolina State University
Raleigh, NC 27606, USA
HDWM
► Portions
of wildlife management that focus on
the interactions between people and wildlife or
between people regarding wildlife
Imperatives for HDWM
► Professional
► Moral
► Learning from
constituents
► Investing in social capital
► Contributing to long term conservation solutions
Exercise
► What
skills and abilities will you need to avoid
becoming an “idiot savant wildlife manager?”
See:
 Jacobson, S.K. and M.D. McDuff. 1998. Training idiot savants: The lack
of human dimensions in conservation biology. Conservation Biology
12(2): 263-267.
 Cutler, M. R. 1982. What kind of wildlifers will be needed in the 1980s?
Wildlife Society Bulletin 10: 75-79.
The Evolution of HDWM
► The
client model
 Sportspersons paid for & received services from
wildlife managers
► The
stakeholder model
 Identifying stakeholders, incorporating their input into
decision-making, resisting special interest groups,
weighing stakeholder opinions, & employing effective
communication strategies
► The
citizen model
 Adding duties associated with citizenship to the
entitlements associated with being a stakeholder
Social Structural Approaches
► Political
economy
 Addresses how production, buying, selling and governance
interact to shape society
► Biological
basis of human interactions with wildlife
 Humans as hunters
► Humans
are preprogramed for inter- & intra-specific aggression due to
selection for hunting success
 Humans as hunted
► Natural selection makes
people fear wildlife because humans were
historically hunted by large carnivores before becoming hunters
themselves
 Biophilia
► Humans
have an instinctive bond with living systems
Social Structural Approaches
► Coupled
human-natural systems modeling
 The simulation of human society, its environment and
interactions between the two systems using physical or
mathematical models
► Economic
valuation
 The act of assigning value to an object
 Often involves determining the potential market value of an
object
Social Psychology
► Attitudes
 Positive or negative evaluations of an object which include
affective and cognitive dimensions
► Values
 Assigned value – meaning, goodness or worth placed on an
object
 Held value – beliefs formed early in life that differentiate good
from bad and are difficult or impossible to change
► Value
orientations
 Basic beliefs a cultural group brings to bear on decision
making
Social Psychology
► Behavior
 An individual’s conscious or involuntary action or
reaction to an object or environment
► Models
for predicting behavior towards wildlife
 The norm-activation model
 Rational choice models
►Theory
of Reasoned Action (TORA)
►Theory of Planned Behavior
Social Psychology
► Risk
Studies
 The study of actions or events that may lead to
consequences harming people or things humans care
about
dimension – applies to risks that are nonobservable, new, unknown to those exposed, have delayed
effects and lack scientific knowledge about them
►Dread dimension – applies to risks that are uncontrollable,
dreaded, catastrophic, fatal, difficult to reduce, pose risk to
future generations, demonstrate increasing levels of risk and
have involuntary exposure
►Unknown
Descriptive Research
► Quantitative examinations
of populations or
phenomenon
 “What”, “where”, “when”, and “how much”
questions
Philosophy
► Ethics
 Philosophy that provides the moral justification for
wildlife management decisions
► Justice
 Philosophy associated with the distribution of benefits
and costs associated with wildlife management
► Science
 Philosophy of the norms, methods, and biases of
wildlife science
Public Involvement
► How
to Use Public Involvement
 Trinity of voice theory
– sufficient opportunity for public to express
opinions
►Standing – respect & legitimacy given to public
perspectives
►Influence – public’s ideas are considered in the
management decision
►Access
Public Involvement
► When
to Use Public Involvement
 Decision tree (Fig. 23.3)
Decision tree for selecting public involvement methods for
wildlife management decision making, adapted from
(Lawrence and Deagen 2001).
Qualitative Approaches
 “How” and “why” questions
 Emic perspective
►A
description of human behavior or belief that comes from
within the culture
 Ethnomethodology, focus groups, participatory
action research, long interviews
 Most useful social knowledge comes from qualitative
inquiry
Qualitative Approaches
Credibility emerges from: triangulation, informant validation, larger
numbers of informants, longer time in the field, and using the actual
words of informants
Criteria for evaluating quantitative
research
Criteria for evaluating qualitative
research
internal validity
credibility
external validity
transferability
reliability
dependability
objectivity
confirmability
SUMMARY
►
Future wildlife managers need HDWM skills more than
any other type and have since the 1980s
► HDWM is evolving from providing a service for hunting
groups to facilitating partnerships with diverse
stakeholders
► Several key HDWM research programs ranging from
social psychology to philosophy inform modern wildlife
management
► Public participation is a powerful wildlife management
tool, buts its success depends on careful consideration of
6 dimensions of social context
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