Service Communautaire d'Information sur la Recherche et le Développement - CORDIS

Human Wildlife Conflicts in Europe Fisheries and Fish-eating Vertebrates as a Model Case

During the past 3 years an interdisciplinary team with researchers from the natural and social sciences from 9 European countries has joined to study human-wildlife conflicts using fisheries and fish-eating vertebrates as model cases. The project called FRAP was funded by the EU. The main goal of the project was the development of a generic framework for reconciliation action plans for conflicts between wildlife conservation and human resource use. The project team has developed a proposal for a new book on Human-Wildlife Conflicts that presents the joint experience gained in the analyses of various model conflicts and a generic framework for the development of biodiversity reconciliation action plans. The generic framework is a structured procedure covering ecological and legal, economic, and social aspects of the conflicts in concern. It is presented as a concrete, step-by-step guideline for people that have to deal with human-wildlife conflicts.

The target groups are mainly managers and decision makers in such conflicts, representatives of the affected stakeholder groups that are involved in negotiations of conflict resolution, and scientists that contribute to the development of reconciliation action plans. It facilitates the identification of gaps in existing reconciliation approaches that may hamper their success and it helps to design reconciliation action plans for new or previously ignored human-wildlife conflicts. Please find attached a brief outline of the planned book and a preliminary Table of Content.

What is the major focus of this book? This book is about conflicts between different stakeholder groups triggered by protected species that compete with humans for natural resources. The species in mind are particularly clever and adaptable, therefore difficult to manage. Partly due to successful species protection policies, they are increasing in numbers and distribution, getting again in closer contact with humans and raising more and new conflicts. The book deals with various types of damages caused by protected vertebrates and their management. It is about key ecological features of typical conflict species and mitigation strategies including technical mitigation and modelling approaches. At the same time, it covers a systematic analysis and development of policies for conflict mitigation and the design of participatory decision strategies involving relevant stakeholders.

How does the book differ from previous books? In North America, there is a long tradition in the field of resolving human-wildlife conflicts, which led to the establishment of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a governmental authority dealing with damage and conflicts due to wildlife. Whereas several books are available that focus on North American experiences or on the experience in conflicts with a singular particular species, the FRAP project was the first major integrated research attempt to address human-wildlife conflict reconciliation in Europe from a generic point of view. While the book provides a European perspective covering case studies from various European countries, it also develops a framework for the development of biodiversity conflict reconciliation action plans that can be used globally. Whereas previous projects in Europe and elsewhere usually could draw only on a limited range of scientific experience, the FRAP project and thus the planned book draws on the experience of a wide range of wildlife biologists, fishery biologists, economists as well as legal and social scientists. In addition, globally, previous research efforts focussed on the development of frameworks to identify hotspots of human-wildlife conflicts whereas adequate frameworks to guide managers and scientists in their struggle to develop and implement reconciliation action plans are still missing but direly needed.

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