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Large Carnivore ConservationIntegrating Science and Policy in the North American West$
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Susan G. Clark and Murray B. Rutherford

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226107400

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226107547.001.0001

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Complexity, Rationality, and the Conservation of Large Carnivores

Complexity, Rationality, and the Conservation of Large Carnivores

(p.325) 10 Complexity, Rationality, and the Conservation of Large Carnivores
Large Carnivore Conservation

David J. Mattson

Susan G. Clark

University of Chicago Press

Conservation of large carnivores is invariably a complex amalgam of biophysical, social, psychological, and political factors interacting at multiple scales. Because human cognition is intrinsically limited, successful engagement with such complexity depends on deploying comprehensive frameworks that parse out relevant elements and tasks in ways that facilitate deliberative sequential processing. This chapter describes a framework that is attentive to the nature of human cognition and that encompasses factors potentially relevant to carnivore conservation, including elements of problem orientation, observer subjectivity and standpoint, social process, decision-making processes, and biophysical factors. We contend that all these features need to be considered in rational efforts to conserve large carnivores successfully.

Keywords:   cognition, complexity, decision process, frameworks, problem orientation, rationality, social process, standpoint

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