University Of Tasmania
Stratford_et_al-Con_Biol-koalas-2000.pdf (200.72 kB)

Managing the Koala problem: interdisciplinary perspectives

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-26, 10:58 authored by Elaine StratfordElaine Stratford, Mazur, N, Lunney, D, Bennett, D
There is a complex scientific, ethical, and cultural debate in Australia about how best to conserve koalas and their habitat. Despite the diverse array of management and research options promoted by scientists, wildlife agency staff, and koala advocates, there remains a gap in our acknowledgment of the social factors influencing decision making about koala conservation. Koala management research has generated valuable scientific knowledge about koala biology and ecology but has been weak about organizational and policy processes and about the cultures within which we produce, disseminate, and legitimize this kind of knowledge. We suggest that more effective koala conservation will result from making the political and cultural influences on decision making regarding the koala more explicit in research, management, and policy-making forums. Research must be conducted in the context of the cultural significance of the koala. The koala's survival depends on preserving the valuable lands that these creatures (and many others) inhabit. Ultimately, the koala symbolizes conflicting land-use values and illustrates the need for greater collaboration, cooperation, and trust among social and natural scientists in the conduct of koala conservation research, management, and policy.


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Conservation Biology



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