Researchers at Colorado State University and The Ohio State University have found that a cultural backlash stemming from the rise of populism may limit opportunities for state fish and wildlife agencies to adapt to changing social values in the United States. The team reached this conclusion by analyzing more than 12,000 surveys from 19 states and studying ballot initiatives related to hunting.
Based on the new study, researchers found that in states with the largest change in social values, individuals who held traditional values had lower levels of trust in the state wildlife agency. In contrast to traditional values, in which people believe wildlife exists for their benefit, the researchers describe an emerging set of values, in which wildlife and humans are seen as part of a connected social community, as mutualism.
In the case of human-wildlife conflict, traditionalists would be more likely to support lethal wildlife control methods while mutualists would be more supportive of restrictions on humans.
Rise of Populism Affects Wildlife Management in US
By Daniella Blot, Science, November 2017
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