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dc.contributor.authorGalbraith, Mel
dc.contributor.authorBollard-Breen, B.
dc.contributor.authorTowns, D. R.
dc.description.abstractPublic participation theory assumes that empowering communities leads to enduring support for new initiatives. The New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy, approved in 2000, embraces this assumption and includes goals for community involvement in resolving threats to native flora and fauna. Over the last 20 years, community-based ecological restoration groups have proliferated, with between 600 and 4000 identified. Many of these groups control invasive mammals, and often include protection of native species and species reintroductions as goals. Such activities involve the groups in “wicked” problems with uncertain biological and social outcomes, plus technical challenges for implementing and measuring results. The solution might be to develop a citizen science approach, although this requires institutional support. We conducted a web-based audit of 50 community groups participating in ecological restoration projects in northern New Zealand. We found great variation in the quality of information provided by the groups, with none identifying strategic milestones and progress towards them. We concluded that, at best, many group members are accidental scientists rather than citizen scientists. Furthermore, the way community efforts are reflected in biodiversity responses is often unclear. The situation may be improved with a new approach to data gathering, training, and analyses.en_NZ
dc.publisherMDPI (Molecular Diversity Preservation International and Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)en_NZ
dc.rights© 2016 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (
dc.subjectecological restorationen_NZ
dc.subjectcitizen scienceen_NZ
dc.subjectconservation volunteeringen_NZ
dc.subjectNew Zealanden_NZ
dc.subjectwicked problemsen_NZ
dc.titleThe community-conservation conundrum : is citizen science the answer?en_NZ
dc.typeJournal Articleen_NZ
dc.subject.marsden050202 Conservation and Biodiversityen_NZ
dc.identifier.bibliographicCitationGalbraith, M. P., Bollard-Breen, B., & Towns, D. R. (2016). The Community-Conservation Conundrum: Is Citizen Science the Answer?. LAND, 5(37), pp.1-16. doi:10.3390/land5040037en_NZ
dc.contributor.affiliationUnitec Institute of Technologyen_NZ
dc.contributor.affiliationAuckland University of Technologyen_NZ
dc.contributor.affiliationNew Zealand. Department of Conservationen_NZ
unitec.publication.placeBasel, Switzerlanden_NZ
unitec.institution.studyareaNatural Sciences

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