L8: Protected areas as an essential part of sustainable development?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 13:45 to 15:15

The lecture focuses on the general frameworks of protected areas and asks for the role of protected areas in the discussion about sustainable development. Despite the fact, that the Danube River is (at least in most of its upper and middle parts) a highly regulated river, it nevertheless is accompanied by a series of areas that show different statuses of protection (e.g. nature park, national park, Natura 2000, biosphere reserve). How manifold the reasons for the designation of protected areas can be, the existence of protected areas are always an expression and manifestation of a societal discourse and conflict. Many different obstacles (political, juridical, social and economical) have to be faced (and overcome) until an area gains the status of being protected. As a consequence, protected areas have to fulfill very different expectations to finally be accepted on a broad basis in their host region. Some of these expectations are:

  • to contribute to regional development,
  • to stimulate and fostering tourism,
  • to provide good and reliable jobs,
  • to provide good and easy accessible possibilities for recreation and leisure time,
  • to contribute to environmental and esthetical education,
  • to facilitate scientific research,
  • and: to protect natural heritage.

Facing so many expectations, the question arises in what way and on what general (societal) basis protected areas can contribute to a sustainable development of a region? This will be the core question of the lecture.

Suggested reading (see attachments):

  • Introduction to Conservation
    • Hambler, Clive & Susan M. Canney (2013): Conservation. Cambridge, UK, Cambridge University Press. (Chapter 1)
  • Conservation and Nationalism
    • Gissibl, Bernhard, Sabine Höhler & Patrick Kupper (eds.) (2012): Civilizing nature. National parks in global historical perspective. New York, Oxford: Berghahn Books. (Chapter 1)
  • Conservation and Capitalism/Money
    • Brockington, Dan, Rosaleen Duffy & Jim Igoe (2008): Nature Unbound. Conservation, Capitalism and the Future of Protected Areas, London, New York, Earthscan. (Chapter 1 and Chapter 9)
    • Getzner, Michael, Michael Jungmeier & Sigrun Lange (2010): People, parks and money. Stakeholder involvement and regional development: a manual for protected areas, Klagenfurt, Johannes Heyn. (Chapter 2)
  • Conservation and displacement
    • Dowie, Mark (2009): Conservation Refugees. The Hundred-Year Conflict Between Global Conservation and Native Peoples, Cambridge, MIT Press. ("Introduction" and "Nature")
    • Agrawal, Arun & Kent Redford (2009): Conservation and Displacement: An Overview. In: Conservation and Society, 7 (1), 1-10.