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Conservation and Livelihoods

This work reflects growing concerns about the relationship between biodiversity conservation policy and poverty and focuses particularly on poverty/conservation linkages at national and international scales. The nature of poverty/conservation connections remains highly contested. It is recognised that global efforts to conserve biodiversity and to alleviate poverty may be in conflict. Specifically, eviction of rural communities to create protected areas can cause hardship and poverty and contravene legal or human rights. While economic benefits can flow from protected areas (e.g. through wildlife tourism), local socio-economic impacts can be strongly negative. We analysed national level aggregate poverty data from the World Bank World Development Indicators (2004) and national data on the nature and extent of protected areas (World Database on Protected Areas 2005) to identify and explore regional and income-based typologies between protected areas and poverty.


  • Chronic Poverty Research Centre, Institute for Development Policy and Management (IDPM), University of Manchester (2004).


  • ‘Conservation and Poverty at National and International Scales’. Report to IDPM, 2004.
  • Upton, C., Ladle, R., Hulme, D., Jiang, T., Brockington, D. and Adams, W. ‘Do Protected Areas Promote Poverty?’ Submitted to Oryx, 2006.
  • Adams, W.M. and Hutton, J. (2007) ‘People, parks and poverty: political ecology and biodiversity conservation‘, Conservation and Society 5 (2): 147-183.