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Changing Abundance of Elephants and 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. "Changing Abundance of Elephants and Willingness to Pay for their Conservation," Economic Theory, Applications and Issues Working Papers 90538, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uqseet:90538
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/90538
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tisdell, Clement A. & Alauddin, Mohammad, 2002. "Market-Oriented Reforms in Bangladesh and their Impact on Poverty?," Economic Theory, Applications and Issues Working Papers 90521, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tisdell, Clement A., 2005. "Knowledge about a Species' Conservation Status and Funding for its Preservation: Analysis," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 55065, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
    2. Richardson, Leslie & Loomis, John, 2009. "The total economic value of threatened, endangered and rare species: An updated meta-analysis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(5), pages 1535-1548, March.
    3. Tisdell, Clem & Nantha, Hemanath Swarna & Wilson, Clevo, 2007. "Endangerment and likeability of wildlife species: How important are they for payments proposed for conservation?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 627-633, January.
    4. Tuan, Tran Hu & Lindhjem, Henrik, 2008. "Meta-analysis of nature conservation values in Asia & Oceania: Data heterogeneity and benefit transfer issues," MPRA Paper 11470, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Henrik Lindhjem & Tran Tuan, 2012. "Valuation of species and nature conservation in Asia and Oceania: a meta-analysis," Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, Springer;Society for Environmental Economics and Policy Studies - SEEPS, vol. 14(1), pages 1-22, January.
    6. Tisdell, Clement A. & Swarna Nantha, Hemanath, 2005. "Comparison of Funding and Demand for the Conservation of the Charismatic Koala with those for the Critically Endangered Wombat Lasiorhinus krefftii," Economics, Ecology and Environment Working Papers 55067, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
    7. Loureiro, Maria L. & Ojea, Elena, 2008. "Valuing local endangered species: The role of intra-species substitutes," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1-2), pages 362-369, December.

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