Project Directors: Robin Roth (University of Guelph) and Elizabeth Lunstrum (York University)

Traditionally managed in a top-down fashion, national parks in Canada are undergoing a rescaling of conservation practice towards the increased involvement of multiple actors ranging from neighbouring states and national and transnational non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to local communities and market-based actors. This rescaling is intensifying within the context of deep federal funding cuts to Parks Canada and demands that parks need to better reflect the values, interests and visions of a wider expanse of society. This is not unique to Canada but, rather, is a challenge facing protected areas around the world. The objectives of this project are thus to explore how conservation practice, understood as inclusive of large-scale governance and day-to-day management, has been rescaled within Canadian national parks and with what impact, and to situate this globally through a comparative analysis with established research sites in Thailand, Mozambique and South Africa.

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This research project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.