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Conservation and Society
An interdisciplinary journal exploring linkages between society, environment and development
Conservation and Society
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 244-253

Wildlife Protection, Community Participation in Conservation, and (Dis) Empowerment in Southern Tanzania

1 Department of Geography, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
2 Institute of Resource Assessment, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Correspondence Address:
Christine Noe
Department of Geography, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-4923.170396

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The debate about conservation and human welfare (poverty or development) is no longer new in the literature. Yet, poverty and conservation challenges persist. This paper seeks to demonstrate how community involvement in conservation has both empowering and disempowering effects. The paper uses two villages in the Namtumbo district, one representing those villages that are involved in wildlife protection and the other representing those villages that are not involved in conservation. The paper addresses two questions: 1) does community participation in wildlife protection lead to their empowerment? and 2) does empowerment, in turn, lead to community development? Different methods of data collection were used, including quantitative interviews using questionnaire and the qualitative techniques (such as group discussions, observations, and secondary analysis of policies and village documents related to wildlife conservation projects). Findings from these sources drive the main argument of the paper that the relationship between community participation in conservation and economic empowerment remains problematic after two decades of community-based conservation interventions.

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