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Population, Resources, and Environment: Implications of Human Behavioral Ecology for Conservation

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Low, Bobbi S.; Heinen, Joel T.
Date: 1990
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/4032
Sector: Global Commons
Subject(s): conservation
population growth
resource management
global commons
Abstract: From p. 2: "Here we examine human resource use in a behavioral ecological context, generating testable predictions about resource use patterns, and making specific recommendations about strategies to promote wise resource use which should be adopted if a behavioral ecological, rather than the traditional view, is correct. As we explain in the next section, a behavioral ecological approach argues that humans, like all other living organisms, evolved to get resources in order to survive and reproduce, and that individual and familial well-being has always been central, while the good of the group has never been relevant. We argue that natural selection has shaped all living organisms to exploit resources effectively, in competition with each other, and that our problem is that through our cleverness,we have created a novel evolutionary circumstance--we have such technology that the very behaviors we evolved to perform are those likely to ruin us."

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