Reordering space for wildlife protection: conservation partnerships as driver for human displacements in the Greater Selous Ecosystem

Authors: Christine Noe*, University of Dar es Salaam
Topics: Human-Environment Geography
Keywords: Reordering space, conservation, wildlife protection, partnerships, Selous
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Roosevelt 3, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Reordering space to establish large conservation landscapes has historically been carried out for political and economic control. In this paper, I examine how the creation of the Selous game reserve as Africa's ‘largest wilderness’ in colonial Tanzania and its continuity in the contemporary times has changed contours of social-economic and political landscapes. How have the rural poor navigated these changes? Are they politically and economically empowered as the country’s conservation territory rise to 40% of total land? This paper grapples with these questions in the context of the emerging density of conservation partners in the re-organization of space to create the Greater Selous Ecosystem. The paper analyzes primary data from over a decade of research in the area, suggesting that a convergence of interests of powerful actors is taking place, in view of securing space for wildlife protection. At the same time, the overflow of wildlife in village lands is prompting changes in the meaning and use of land for local users and is altering local institutions. Options are increasingly limited for those in the margins of local communities, who are both partners in sustainability but also shoulder the costs of coexisting with wildlife.

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