Hagemann, Jennifer (2022). The Value of an Elephant: Conservation Politics and Its Impact on Human-Elephant Relations in the Kunene Region/Namibia. Masters thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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In the Kunene Region in nothwestern Namibia, conservation politics have undergone significant changes over the past 100 years and consequently affected the relations between humans and elephants on a local level. Local inhabitants of the Kunene Region have maintained different kinds of relations to elephants from the last decades of the 19th century to the early 21st century. At first, they were hired as assistants to hunters; under colonial administration, they were excluded from using wildlife as a resource and in the late 20th century they became game guards, managing and protecting wildlife themselves under new conservation guidelines. Especially when it comes to internationally high valued species such as elephants, perspectives on conservation measures differ greatly between a variety of stakeholders. This thesis investigates the value of elephants from different perspectives in the international debate about trophy hunting and elephant conservation and its impact on local perceptions of elephants. The present image of elephants in Kunene is ambiguous. On the one hand, locals seem to support the growth of the elephant population in order to gain benefits (e.g. from tourism), on the other hand, they struggle to live side by side with them. Analyses investigating human-elephant conflicts led to effective interventions in the regions most affected. In that way, any conservancies are able to reduce conflicts involving elephants. To assess human-elephant conflicts and mitigation measures, education about elephants’ behavior is crucial. Using diverse sources, the local population gained a wide knowledge about elephants, their behaviour and measures to be taken to avoid conflict situations. Therefore, the thesis further aims at giving a broader understanding of the behavioural ecology of elephants as well as local perceptions and reactions towards elephant bahaviour.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters thesis)
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-628925
Series Name at the University of Cologne: Culture and Environments in Africa Series
Volume: 17
Date: 2022
Place of Publication: Köln
ISSN: 2194-1556
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 4: Außereuropäische Sprachen, Kulturen und Gesellschaften > Institut für Ethnologie
Subjects: Customs, etiquette, folklore
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Namibia, conservation, human-wildlife relations, Africa, elephants, MA thesisEnglish
Namibia, Naturschutz, Mensch-Umwelt Beziehungen, Afrika, Elefanten, MasterarbeitGerman
Date of oral exam: 2022
NameAcademic Title
Bollig, MichaelProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes
URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/62892


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