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IUCN management categories fail to represent new, multiple-use protected areas in Madagascar

  • Charlie J. Gardner (a1)
Abstract

The IUCN protected area management category system provides an internationally-recognized, unifying framework for the description and classification of the world’s diverse protected areas. It includes six main categories, of which category V has attracted debate because of its emphasis on the role of harmonious people–nature interactions in maintaining biodiversity within cultural landscapes. Madagascar’s new generation of protected areas comprises sites mainly proposed as category V, with the joint management objectives of biodiversity conservation and the promotion of natural resource use for rural development. Here, I use a categorization decision tool to investigate the categorization of 10 new protected areas proposed as category V, and find that these sites fail to meet the criteria for any management category. I argue that category V is inappropriate for these new protected areas because their associated people–nature interactions are largely negative for biodiversity. I further argue that management of these new protected areas differs fundamentally from management of category V protected areas in Europe, and recommend the modification of the management category system to account for such distinctions.

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Corresponding author
*Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NS, UK, and WWF Madagascar and Western Indian Ocean Programme Office, Antananarivo, Madagascar. E-mail cjamgardner@yahoo.co.uk
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