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First line of defence: engaging communities in tackling wildlife crime

This article reports on a symposium on wildlife management held in February 2015 (Beyond Enforcement: Communities, Governance, Incentives and Sustainable Use in Combating Wildlife Crime) which concluded that enforcement alone is insufficient to combat the illegal wildlife trade; if done poorly, it can even have major negative consequences.

A better approach, according to symposium participants, is community engagement based on listening, trust-building, respect for traditional authority, the development of shared, co-created approaches, and, crucially, recognition of the rights of communities to use and benefit from wildlife.

The article appears from page 33 in Unasylva 249, an international journal of forestry and forest industries.

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