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International conservation volunteering from the UK: what does it contribute?

  • Jamie Lorimer (a1)
Abstract

Increasing numbers of fee-paying volunteers now travel from the UK to work on conservation projects in middle and low income countries. The time and resources they commit have important implications for international conservation practice. This article provides an overview of this sector, comprising data on its size, value and key organizations. I map the scope of volunteer-led conservation in 2007 in terms of the countries, species and habitats prioritized for attention, and identify distinct geographical and taxonomic partialities towards particular taxa, countries and habitats. I outline how conservation priorities are established and reflect on two factors that help account for the identified partialities: the history and politics of international conservation and the cultural preferences of volunteers. In conclusion I argue that volunteering can help international conservation but is not a panacea for comprehensive efforts to protect threatened biodiversity.

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Corresponding author
*Department of Geography, Kings College London, Strand, WC2R 2LS, UK. E-mail jamie.lorimer@kcl.ac.uk
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Oryx
  • ISSN: 0030-6053
  • EISSN: 1365-3008
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