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Green infrastructure and landscape connectivity in England: a political ecology approach

Bormpoudakis, Dimitrios (2016) Green infrastructure and landscape connectivity in England: a political ecology approach. Doctor of Science (DSc) thesis, University of Kent, University of Reading. (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Abstract

'Conservation is about people, not just animals' argued Prince William in a letter to The Financial Times , written to gather support for ending ivory poaching and trading. This truism is often repeated by conservationists; we are frequently reminded that what we do - as humans - influences nature 'out there'.

I am not claiming to be the first to identify this contradiction within conservation, but contra a sizeable number of scientists who work on similar subjects, I am normatively for conservation. A wealth of research has been published on conservation-society relationships that interrogates wider political, societal and economic constrains and opportunities as they relate to conservation. Usually though, research on what could be called critical conservation studies is (a) published in journals that conservationists do not read, and (b) is conducted by non-conservationists, often critical of conservation as a science and praxis per se. Thus all this wealth has little import to wider discussions about the future of conservation science and practice, and is even considered by conservationists as hostile to their agenda. I hope it is obvious from the above that I place this piece of research within the wide field of conservation science - despite drawing from a variety of disciplines.

I begin with a section that introduces the reader into the area of study , followed and a brief literature-based summary of conservation in England from the beginning of the 20th century. The next three chapters should be read as a small trilogy that discusses the general trends in conservation policy and governance in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis (Chapter 3), followed by two smaller chapters (vignettes) that study post-financial crisis landscape scale conservation from: (a) a policy and governance perspective (Chapter 4); a use of science and scientific metaphors perspective (Chapter 5). The following two chapters try to reconstruct the where and when (geography and history are important) specific conservation policies and practices emerge, always in relation to economic and political changes. Chapter 6 is a genealogy of green infrastructure, from its emergence in the post-riot Liverpool landscape of 1981, to its current amalgamation with ecosystem services and monetary-valuation-of-nature milieu. Chapter 7 looks at biodiversity offsetting and argues that changing economic and transport geographies are crucial in understanding why biodiversity offsetting emerged as a solution to wildlife-development conflict in this instance and in the South East of England in particular. I conclude with a proposal for a new conservation that places utopia at the centre of its methodology (Chapter 8).

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Science (DSc))
Thesis advisor: Tzanopoulos, Joseph
Thesis advisor: Potts, Simon
Uncontrolled keywords: nature neoliberalism, conservation history, green infrastructure, political ecology, biodiversity offsetting, post-politics, geography of conservation
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation
Depositing User: Users 1 not found.
Date Deposited: 27 Jul 2016 09:40 UTC
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2020 04:14 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/56639 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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