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Open AccessArticle

How Ecocentrism and Anthropocentrism Influence Human–Environment Relationships in a Kenyan Biodiversity Hotspot

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Economic Geography, Institute of Geography, School of Cultural Studies and Social Sciences, University of Osnabrueck, Seminarstr. 19 a/b, D-49074 Osnabrueck, Germany
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Department of Education, Faculty of Education and Social Sciences, University of Vechta, Driverstraße 22, D-49377 Vechta, Germany
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Terrestrial Ecology Research Group, Department of Ecology and Ecosystem Management, Technical University Munich, Hans-Carl-von-Carlowitz-Platz 2, D-85354 Freising, Germany
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Institute of Geoscience and Geography, Department of Geoecology, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Von-Seckendorff-Platz 4, D-06099 Halle (Saale), Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(19), 8213; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198213
Received: 21 August 2020 / Revised: 8 September 2020 / Accepted: 1 October 2020 / Published: 5 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainability, Biodiversity and Conservation)
Protecting nature and securing human livelihood needs are very conflicting especially in biodiversity-rich areas of the Global South. The Taita Hills Cloud Forest (THCF) in Kenya remains one of the top biodiversity hotspots worldwide. Environmental data for the area has been studied for decades. Sociodemographic analyses on inequality have been conducted by governmental and non-governmental organizations. Little has been done yet to correlate them to investigate their relationships. A lot of attention has been paid to the connection between agricultural practices and impacts on the environment, but human–environment relationships are much more complex, especially in Kenya’s biodiversity-rich areas. This paper assesses the local population’s perception of its surrounding environment and investigates their understanding of nature conservation. Using quantitative and qualitative methods, 300 survey respondents were classified concerning their nature ethical views (particularly anthropocentrism and ecocentrism). By using grounded theory, data were regularly reviewed during the entire research, to assemble an evaluable and comparable dataset. Our study reveals that gender has a distinct impact on whether the interviewees have an anthropocentric or ecocentric perspective of nature and conservation. Moreover, there is a strong need for an intermediate bridge between anthropocentrism and ecocentrism. View Full-Text
Keywords: human–environment relationships; nature conservation; Taita Hills; biodiversity hotspot; ecocentrism; anthropocentrism; human–government conflicts human–environment relationships; nature conservation; Taita Hills; biodiversity hotspot; ecocentrism; anthropocentrism; human–government conflicts
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rülke, J.; Rieckmann, M.; Nzau, J.M.; Teucher, M. How Ecocentrism and Anthropocentrism Influence Human–Environment Relationships in a Kenyan Biodiversity Hotspot. Sustainability 2020, 12, 8213. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198213

AMA Style

Rülke J, Rieckmann M, Nzau JM, Teucher M. How Ecocentrism and Anthropocentrism Influence Human–Environment Relationships in a Kenyan Biodiversity Hotspot. Sustainability. 2020; 12(19):8213. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198213

Chicago/Turabian Style

Rülke, Jana; Rieckmann, Marco; Nzau, Joslyn M.; Teucher, Mike. 2020. "How Ecocentrism and Anthropocentrism Influence Human–Environment Relationships in a Kenyan Biodiversity Hotspot" Sustainability 12, no. 19: 8213. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198213

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