Biodiversity governance in Peninsular Malaysia - identifying conservation priorities, evaluating the impact of federalism and assessing the governance of protected areas

Kangayatkarasu, Nagulendran (2018) Biodiversity governance in Peninsular Malaysia - identifying conservation priorities, evaluating the impact of federalism and assessing the governance of protected areas. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

To address global biodiversity loss, national and subnational actions are imperative. Malaysia is a biodiversity hotspot with a federal system of government. The literature points to gaps in governance of biodiversity. The aim of this Ph.D. was to understand issues on biodiversity governance in Peninsular Malaysia, with the following objectives: (i) identify conservation priorities; (ii) review and assess the effect of federalism; and (iii) review and analyse the governance of protected areas (PA). This research identified conservation priorities defined by multi stakeholder participation, deploying a workshop and snowball survey approach. This generated a ranked list of 35 priority issues under seven themes, with high degree of agreement among stakeholders. The prioritisation exercise and the literature revealed current federal system of governance posed biodiversity governance challenges. Building on postcolonial and political ecology frameworks, theoretical and empirical qualitative research was carried out on the impact of federalism on biodiversity governance; and the governance of protected areas. I concluded that that states did not want to give up their land for conservation as it is their source of revenue in the absence of incentives for conservation from federal government due to the dichotomy in the federal constitution. Governance of PAs is compromised with different laws operating at both state and federal level, shortage of manpower and funds. This study provides a menu of recommendation options which highlights constitutional, institutional, financial and legal reforms to strengthen governance of biodiversity. In terms of contribution, this study took an innovative approach to identify conservation priorities in Peninsular Malaysia while applying postcolonial and political ecology theory to examine biodiversity governance in a federalised developing country. I highlight the potential of this study to influence policy space and if the proposed reforms are implemented, Peninsular Malaysia has all the ingredients in terms of economic capability, sizeable forest cover and low population density for the effective conservation of biodiversity.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Campos-Arceiz, Ahimsa
Padfield, Rory
Keywords: biodiversity governance, conservation priorities federalism, protected areas, Malaysia, political ecology
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history. Biology
Faculties/Schools: UNMC Malaysia Campus > Faculty of Science > School of Geography
Item ID: 51781
Depositing User: KANGAYATKARASU, NAGULENDRAN
Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2018 04:40
Last Modified: 07 May 2020 18:00
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/51781

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