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Parks, Proxies, and People: Ideology, Epistemology, and the Measurement of Human Population Growth on Protected Area Edges

David M. Hoffman

Keywords: conservation; epistemic communities; human migration; integrated conservation and development projects (ICDPs); population growth; protected areas

Abstract

There is an extensive literature about growing human populations on protected area (PA) edges and their contribution to biodiversity threats. This article reviews the conservation literature’s engagements with the question of human migration and population growth on PA edges by reviewing: (1) the normative basis of conservation biology; (2) the development of conservation science in response; (3) conservationist engagements with PAs, migration, and population growth; (4) the engagement with George Wittemyer and colleagues (2008); and (5) the landscape of analyses and debates regarding PAs and their relationship to migration. The review finds that a strong biocentric position of conservation biology is evident and discusses the impacts that this position has on research, conclusions, and policies intended to cope with this growing issue.

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