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Article

Community Participation in Nature Conservation: The Chinese Experience and Its Implication to National Park Management

by 1, 2 and 1,3,*
1
Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2
School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
3
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4760; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114760
Received: 8 April 2020 / Revised: 8 June 2020 / Accepted: 9 June 2020 / Published: 11 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue National Parks: Theories and Practices)
Rural communities are taking active roles in conservation. However, the basic modes and content of community participatory approach are seldom summarised or reflected on in China, leaving the use of terms confused and their links to practice disconnected. By reviewing the literature, we traced back to the protected area-community relations from the perspective of features of rural communities, namely knowledge accumulation, social bond, collective actions, and risk-aversion, and reflected on changing roles of community conservation through recognition of these features. Combining case studies and our own research experience, we focused on the de facto practices behind the somewhat casual use of several terms and re-classified community participation in conservation to three modes of community participatory management, community co-management, and community dominant management, along a continuum in which, from low to high level, conservation is more a means rather than an end for the community to be empowered for their own resource management. We argued that the success of community participation must ensure stable and flexible land tenure so that the right to benefit can be guaranteed, and the collective action in managing resources can be achieved by empowerment. In practice, further institutional changes of improvement in the legislation and optimisation in benefit sharing and compensation are needed to promote community participation in a broader social participation context. View Full-Text
Keywords: community participation; empowerment; protected areas (PAs); conservation; land tenure; collective action; national park community participation; empowerment; protected areas (PAs); conservation; land tenure; collective action; national park
MDPI and ACS Style

He, S.; Yang, L.; Min, Q. Community Participation in Nature Conservation: The Chinese Experience and Its Implication to National Park Management. Sustainability 2020, 12, 4760. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114760

AMA Style

He S, Yang L, Min Q. Community Participation in Nature Conservation: The Chinese Experience and Its Implication to National Park Management. Sustainability. 2020; 12(11):4760. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114760

Chicago/Turabian Style

He, Siyuan, Lingfan Yang, and Qingwen Min. 2020. "Community Participation in Nature Conservation: The Chinese Experience and Its Implication to National Park Management" Sustainability 12, no. 11: 4760. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114760

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