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Politicians, Peasants and Poachers: The Political Economy of Wildlife Policy in Zambia, 1964-1991

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Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Author: Gibson, Clark C.
Date: 1995
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/3589
Sector: Wildlife
Region: Africa
Subject(s): wildlife
political economy
economic policy
Abstract: "This book explores these and other puzzles that surround the politics of wildlife policy in Africa. It does so by examining the content, continuity, and change of wildlife policy in Zambia in the post-colonial period. It then compares the Zambian case with selected cases from Kenya and Zimbabwe. Four empirical questions frame this study. First, why did the first independent governments of Zambia, Kenya, and Zimbabwe keep colonial wildlife laws intact, despite prior promises by nationalists to reverse such exclusionary measures? Second, why did these powerful African presidents respond in different ways to the rise of poaching? Third, why did the administrators of these countries' wildlife programs in the 1980s create bureaucratic structures that frustrated certain conservation goals? And fourth, why did these same programs, designed to offer incentives to so that they would conserve animals, fail to stop illegal hunting? "This book argues that because wildlife is an important economic and political resource in each of these three countries, individuals and groups have sought to structure policy to secure wildlife's benefits for themselves. These actors operate in an arena composed of numerous institutions that affect their strategies and choices. The outcome of their efforts is wildlife policies that do not necessarily protect animals; in fact, many policies generated poor conservation results in Zambia, Kenya, and Zimbabwe. Rather, wildlife policies and their outcomes reflect attempts by individuals and groups to gain private advantage."

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