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Perceived Attitude and Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) establishment: Why households’ characteristics matters in Coastal resources conservation initiatives in Tanzania


  • Jennifer K. Sesabo
  • Hartmut Lang
  • Richard S.J. Tol

    () (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin)


In recent years, conservation initiatives through Marine Protected Area (MPAs) in many developing countries have been molded to win the support and participation of local communities. Increasingly, studies have been undertaken to enhance the understandings of the characteristics of rural communities. In the case of Tanzania, the level of compliance with marine and coastal resources management is constrained by lack of knowledge regarding coastal communities’ behavior and characteristics. Indeed, it is hypothesized that the knowledge about rural coastal communities will lead to an increase in compliance of conservation initiatives. Therefore, this paper provides an empirical assessment of households’ perceived attitudes towards proposed MPA establishment in two Tanzanian coastal villages (Mlingotini and Nyamanzi) and their vicinity. Based on survey data, the results indicate that 50.23% of households had favorable attitudes towards the introduction of MPA, out of which 34% belonged to the poor class. Moreover, a majority of households indicate that there is a need of public participation in planning and implementation of MPA. Subsequently, Probit regression, which featured in the analysis revealed that perceived costs and benefits accruing from MPAs establishment, awareness of MPAs objectives and rules that govern the use of marine and coastal resources, dependency on marine and coastal-based activities, perceived fishery conditions, wealth and location variables have a significant influence on perceived attitudes towards establishing of new MPA. Based on the findings, it can be concluded that conservation initiatives through the establishment of MPAs may be more beneficial and more effective when policy makers understand the characteristics and behavior of coastal communities. In addition, conservation initiatives should be based on the consensus building and participation of all stakeholders.

Suggested Citation

  • Jennifer K. Sesabo & Hartmut Lang & Richard S.J. Tol, 2006. "Perceived Attitude and Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) establishment: Why households’ characteristics matters in Coastal resources conservation initiatives in Tanzania," Working Papers FNU-99, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Mar 2006.
  • Handle: RePEc:sgc:wpaper:99

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    Cited by:

    1. Thapa Karki, Shova & Hubacek, Klaus, 2015. "Developing a conceptual framework for the attitude–intention–behaviour links driving illegal resource extraction in Bardia National Park, Nepal," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 129-139.
    2. Faasen, Helena & Watts, Scotney, 2007. "Local community reaction to the `no-take' policy on fishing in the Tsitsikamma National Park, South Africa," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 36-46, October.
    3. Dritan Osmani, "undated". "A note on optimal transfer schemes, stable coalition for environmental protection and joint maximization assumption," Working Papers FNU-176, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University.

    More about this item


    marine protection areas; fisheries; Tanzania;

    JEL classification:

    • Q22 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Fishery

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