Western-style conservation has, according to many practitioners, become increasingly hard to justify. On the plains of Africa, in the tiger reserves of Asia and the rainforests of South America, hunters have been outlawed as poachers. Suspicion is growing that governments are using conservation as an excuse for land-grabbing.
Some observers believe that a new conservation scenario is slowly emerging from such clashes, in which people rediscover ways to live in harmony with wildlife, rather than be totally separated from it. They reason that wildlife has a rightful economic as well as biological and cultural value.
This report, produced just before the 10th full meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES), held in Zimbabwe in June 1997, explores the debate on how wildlife in developing countries can best be preserved whilst also allowing communities to flourish.