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CON-VIVA: Towards Convivial Conservation: Governing Human-Wildlife Interactions in the Anthropocene

CON-VIVA is grounded in the premise that conservation is critical to transformations to sustainability but that its practices need to change radically. Conservation can be effective in protecting biodiversity in places, but in toto has failed to halt global biodiversity loss. Continued habitat fragmentation and reduced funding during times of austerity compound this problem. Many conservationists now acknowledge this, leading to vigorous ‘Anthropocene’ discussions on how to reconfigure human-wildlife relations, protected areas and the role of economic development in conservation. CON-VIVA’s key objective is to conceptually refine and empirically test the prospects for one proposal emerging from these debates: convivial conservation. This new model responds to the T2S themes by moving beyond protected areas and faith in markets to build landscape, governance and funding pathways that integrate conservation and poverty reduction, while enhancing prosperity. CON-VIVA investigates the prospects for convivial conservation by comparing cutting-edge conservation cases that address human-wildlife conflict involving apex predators in Finland, USA and DAC-countries Brazil and Tanzania. Our hypothesis is that if ‘living with’ apex predators can be effectively combined with new forms of economic development, a transition to convivial conservation can be boosted significantly. By organising the project around integrated academic-practitioner networks on local and global levels, we will better understand the conditions for this transition, while conceptualising and popularising a new model for conservation. This allows CON-VIVA to contribute to SDG15 and to inspire and enhance broader transformations to sustainability.

Research team

Prof. B. Büscher, Wageningen University
Prof. D. Brockington, University of Sheffield
Prof. A. Nygren, University of Helsinki,
MSc. M. Bukhi, University of Dodoma
name Principal Investigator from Brazil t.b.a
name Principal Investigator from the United States t.b.a.