Date of Graduation

8-2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Public Policy (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Political Science

Advisor

Eric J. Wailes

Committee Member

Brinck J. Kerr

Second Committee Member

Lori C. Holyfield

Third Committee Member

Daniel V. Rainey

Abstract

The management of common pool resources and policy conflicts between livestock and wildlife, two land-use types that take place in the same geo-spatial area has been a subject of debate among scholars for decades. This conflict in policies has engendered in communities which are beneficiaries attitudes that are either negative towards wildlife or favorable depending on the benefits they derive from them. This research therefore set out to understand the conflicts in the management of the Okavango Delta Ramsar Site (ODRS) where the OD is situated. The study used the grounded theory to collect and analyze the data in the ODRS from the respondent communities. The study finds that most members of the community had a favorable attitude towards CBNRM and the livestock policies. There is a difference in attitudes between communities that depend solely on CBNRM for livelihood and those that had alternative sources of livelihood such as cattle. The communities which depend only on CBNRM were strongly in favor of the policy and could not conceive life without CBNRM. Those which are not part of CBNRM and won cattle were against CBNRM as they felt it protected wild animals at the expense of livestock. The mixed reaction came from communities that are involved with both livestock and wildlife. The negative attitudes were expressed with regard to the decision making process concerning both livestock and wildlife polices as communities felt they were excluded and only informed about these policies. The study concluded that the power holders used their mobilization of process and bias to circumvent the communities in decision-making to avoid conflict.

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