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Governance Performance and Social Networks in Endangered Species Conservation: A Case of Rebun Lady's Slipper

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Yamaki, Kazushige
Conference: Commoners and the Changing Commons: Livelihoods, Environmental Security, and Shared Knowledge, the Fourteenth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons
Location: Mt. Fuji, Japan
Conf. Date: June 3-7
Date: 2013
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10535/8998
Sector: Wildlife
Region: East Asia
Subject(s): IASC
performance
conservation
endangered species
governance and politics
Abstract: "Co-management conducted by diverse stakeholders is an important key element in the governance of natural resources as public commons, since relationships between stakeholders have a significant effect on the performance of that governance. This study analyzes how the relationships of stakeholders influence the performance of collaborative natural resource governance using social network analysis. Conservation activity regarding the Rebun Lady's-Slipper (Cypripedium macranthos var. rebunense), which is an endangered species, was used as a case study. Conservation activity is implemented under two formal institutions: the Rebun Lady's-Slipper Conservation and Breeding Program and the Rebun Town Alpine Flowers Council. The former is responsible for overall policy making, and the latter conducts monitoring and education activities. I asked 38 actors who were involved in the Rebun Lady's-Slipper conservation activity to assess the activities. Most respondents evaluated 'monitoring and patrol' and 'education activity' as good, while less than half of the respondents evaluated 'policy making' as good. The social network of the Rebun Town Alpine Flowers Council that conducts 'monitoring and patrol' and 'education activity' was highly cohesive and had a high proportion of ties between actors in different subgroups. This indicates that bonding and bridging social capital are developed, fostering a collaborative relationship that is necessary for monitoring and education activities. On the other hand, centralization was low, and the network was separated into subnetworks in the Rebun Lady's-Slipper Conservation and Breeding Program, indicating that leadership is lacking in the policy-making process. It is concluded that the performance of Rebun Lady's-Slipper conservation activities is closely related to the social network structures."

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