Behavior Change to Reduce Illegal Wildlife Demand
"Conservation is about managing humans. The science of human behavior change is the least understood, the least utilized, and the most important science in conservation."
~Brett Jenks, Rare, 2011
Human behavior, although responsible for negative impacts on wildlife, also represents the means by which strategies to reduce those impacts will more readily succeed. That is, biodiversity conservation is contingent upon managing human behavior and, at times, changing it. This is particularly relevant and salient topic in the context of the illegal trade of wildlife and wildlife products (both flora and fauna). Driven by dynamics of consumer demand and illicit supply, the illegal harvest and sale of wildlife propels over-exploitation of various species, threatening the survival of species. Mitigating this illegal trade requires a fuller appreciation of human behavior and methods to change it. In various sectors, social influence, behavioral insights, social marketing, and human-centered approaches are becoming more mainstream in practice and policy. However, in the context of conservation, and, in particular, the illegal wildlife trade, their usefulness is not well-known nor application widespread. This project outline various behavior change approaches and frameworks, discussing their usefulness and potential application in the context of the illegal trade of wildlife and wildlife products.
Wallen, K. E., & Daut, E. F. (2018). The challenge and opportunity of behavior change methods to reduce demand for illegal wildlife. Nature Conservation, 26, 55–75. link
Wallen, K. E., & Daut, E. F. (2017). Exploring social influence and social marketing to reduce consumer demand for illegal wildlife. Asian Journal of Conservation Biology, 6, 3–15. link
Wallen, K. E. (2018, April 24). Illegal logging costs nations billions of dollars every year: Here's how social science can help curb it. The Conversation. link
Conservation | Natural Resources
People | Behavior | Action