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Protected Areas and Migration

The current edition of Conservation and Society has a special section on Protected Areas and Migration. A summary of three of them are presented here with their links.

Conservation and Society is a peer-reviewed interdisciplinary open access journal dedicated to the advancement of the theory and practice of conservation.

1. Conservation, relocation and the social consequences of conservation policies in protected areas: Case study of the Sariska Tiger Reserve, India.


The coercive, top-down approach to managing protected areas has created socio-cultural disruption and often even failed to conserve biodiversity. This top-down conservation approach has led to management decisions seriously threatening the livelihood and cultural heritage of local people, such as the resettlement programme established to move people from villages inside the park, and the reduction of access to resources and traditional rights. This article presents findings from an analysis of the resettlement program, documenting the consequences of the relocation process on people's livelihood in the Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan, India. The results show that local people have had little influence on the relocation process, and hardly any say on the limitations of access and use of resources linked to the constitution of this protected area. The article challenges the existing conservation paradigm practiced currently by the authorities in most protected areas in India, and calls for park management to rethink their vision of conservation, by adopting new approaches toward a more collaborative paradigm integrating conservation and development needs.

Maria Costanza Torri - Department of Social Sciences, University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto, ON, Canada

Full text at:;year=2011;volume=9;issue=1;spage=54;epage=64;aulast=Torri

2. 'Ha! What is the benefit of living next to the park?' Factors limiting in-migration next to Tarangire National Park, Tanzania.

What does it mean to live on the border of a national park in Tanzania? How do people perceive risks and potential gains associated with living next to a national park? How do concrete conservation practices shape livelihoods, and how, in turn, does this affect patterns of human migration around protected areas (PAs)?


Controversies and contestations of park and other protected area policies, new conservation rules and regulations (formal and informal), and new land classifications are redefining land and resource use, and thus livelihood options, for four ethnically distinct communities around Tarangire National Park, Tanzania. Research was conducted on how livelihoods have been shaped by perceptions of and in response to conservation policies and community-based conservation projects. Several factors were revealed that provide examples of perceived problems and issues, which would deter in-migration to these communities bordering a national park. Migration into these areas, located to the east, north-west, and western border of Tarangire National Park may be limited, at best, due to issues of fear and mistrust, lack of access to and alienation from land and resources, ethnicity, and litigious actions. This paper addresses these limiting factors, revealing how real world examples of conservation issues can be used to inform policy, rather than relying solely on statistical-based modelling.

Alicia Davis: US Fish and Wildlife Service-Office of Subsistence Management, Anchorage, Alaska, USA, and Department of Anthropology, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA

Full text at:;year=2011;volume=9;issue=1;spage=25;epage=34;aulast=Davis

3. Strangers in their own land: Maasai and wildlife conservation in Northern Tanzania.

"It's no wonder this area was taken by the wazungu (white people)", Neserian said, looking around her, shaking her head in awe. It was spectacular. It was, in her eyes, 'Maasai heaven'.


Despite dramatic transformations in conservation rhetoric regarding local people, indigenous rights, and community-oriented approaches, conservation in many places in Tanzania today continues to infringe on human rights. This happens through the exclusion of local people as knowledgeable active participants in management, policy formation, and decision-making processes in land that 'belongs' to them and on which their livelihoods depend. In this paper, I focus on a relatively new conservation area designed on the Conservation Trust Model-Manyara Ranch in Monduli district in northern Tanzania. I present this case as a conservation opportunity lost, where local Maasai who were initially interested in utilising the area for conservation, have come to resent and disrespect the conservation status of the area, after having lost it from their ownership and control. I illustrate how the denial of Maasai memories, knowledge, and management practices in Manyara Ranch threaten the future viability of the place both for conservation and for Maasai use. The paper contributes to a growing literature as well as a set of concerns regarding the relationship between conservation and human rights.

Mara J Goldman, Department of Geography, University of Colorado-Boulder, Boulder, CO, USA.

Full text at:;year=2011;volume=9;issue=1;spage=65;epage=79;aulast=Goldman