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Attitudes towards charismatic animals such as tigers, lions, bears and wolves vary greatly and change over time, resulting in bitter political debates. This comprehensive book identifies and analyses the factors that influence policies across the globe, highlighting how this impacts conservation as a whole. Issues such as overexploitation, hunting, ecotourism and the struggle to prevent illegal wildlife trafficking are examined, and science's role in policymaking is assessed. The conflicting forces behind legislation, including institutions, interest groups and the media are analysed, with particular focus on the significance of the Endangered Species Act, covering over 45 species that have become matters of political debate in 67 different countries. Case studies and conceptual frameworks provide a clear understanding of the key topics, shedding light on this important yet often overlooked area of environmental politics.
1. An introduction to wildlife politics
2. Science and the protection of wildlife
3. Implementation and enforcement issues in preserving wildlife
4. The development of US wildlife policies and legislation
5. Charismatic animals, carnivores, and the politics of wildlife
6. The ESA: evaluation and politics
7. Comparative wildlife politics
8. International wildlife politics
9. Wildlife politics, values, and ethics
10. Hunting and wildlife politics
11. Tourism: good or bad for conservation of wildlife?
Bruce Rocheleau is a Professor Emeritus in the Department of Public Administration, Northern Illinois University.
"There was perhaps a time when it was common to think that the quality of conservation outcomes was entirely dependent upon advances in scientific knowledge [...] However often its impact is filtered through political processes which can appear irrational, and sometimes are. This book is a thorough and comprehensive analysis of the political processes influencing outcomes for wildlife, albeit with a major part of the literature cited relating to the situation in the USA and developing countries. There is rather little said about the UK and EU where a different political dynamic is often at work. [...] What I did not find in this book is practical guidance about how to negotiate the political process and we are told more about the problems than the solutions. The lessons of success seem to me to ideally involve a clearly articulated case, broad and deep support, achievable goals and the possibility of efficient implementation, coupled with an ability to recognise or make political opportunity. Despite this, I found a great deal of interest, with a good helping of wise observation." John Hopkins, The Niche, British Ecological Society magazine, December 2018