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Effects of a Change in Abundance of Elephants on Willingness to Pay for their Conservation

Author

Listed:
  • Bandara, Ranjith
  • Tisdell, Clement A.

Abstract

This paper explores the way in which the stated willingness to pay for the conservation of Asian elephants in Sri Lanka varies with hypothetical variations in their abundance. To do that, it relies on results from a sample of residents of Colombo. The willingness to pay function is found to be unusual. It increases at an increasing rate for hypothetical reductions in the elephant population compared to its current level (a level that makes the Asian elephant endangered) and also increases at a decreasing rate for increases in this population from its current level. Rational explanations are given for this relationship. The relationship is, however, at odds with relationships suggested in some of the literature for total economic value as a function of the abundance of a wildlife species. It is suggested that willingness to pay for conservation of a species rationally includes a strategic element and may not always measure the total economic value of a species. Nevertheless, willingness to pay is still policy relevant in such cases.

Suggested Citation

  • Bandara, Ranjith & Tisdell, Clement A., 2004. "Effects of a Change in Abundance of Elephants on Willingness to Pay for their Conservation," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 48979, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uqseee:48979
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/48979
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tisdell, Clement A., 2003. "Recreational Fishing: Its Expansion, its Economic Value and Aquaculture's Role in Sustaining it," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 48974, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
    2. Kearney, Robert E., 2001. "Fisheries property rights and recreational/commercial conflict: implications of policy developments in Australia and New Zealand," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 49-59, January.
    3. Tisdell, Clement A. & Wilson, Clevo, 2003. "Economics of Wildlife Tourism," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 48969, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tisdell, Clement A. & Wilson, Clevo & Swarna Nantha, Hemanath, 2004. "Public Support for Sustainable Commercial Harvesting of Wildlife: An Australian Case Study," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 51418, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
    2. Tisdell, Clement A. & Wilson, Clevo, 2004. "Knowledge and Willingness to Pay for the Conservation of Wildlife Species: Experimental Results Evaluating Australian Tropical Species," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 51293, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
    3. Tisdell, Clement A. & Wilson, Clevo, 2004. "Information and Wildlife Valuation: Experiments and Policy," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 51409, University of Queensland, School of Economics.

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