A favourable shift towards public acceptance of wildlife conservation in Peninsular Malaysia: comparing the findings of the Wild Life Commission of Malaya (1932) with a recent survey of attitudes in Kuala Lumpur and Taiping, Perak

Abstract : Peninsular Malaysia is rich in wildlife including elephants and tigers but local attitudes towards conserving these species varies. With the aim of understanding the factors affecting these attitudes we analysed the data of the 1932 report of the Wild Life Commission of Malaya and compare them with the findings of a 2016 survey carried out in the city of Kuala Lumpur and the town of Taiping, Perak. We identify the limitations of using the full dataset of the Commission and instead focused on the 722 Asian respondents, stratified according to social status, looking at the attitudes of the Asian colonial elite, the kampong elite and farmers; as well as looking at the attitudes of individuals that had engaged in hunting. We compared these results with 525 respondents from the 2016 urban survey and found that the profile of the recent responses is comparable to that of the colonial elite – both being favourable to conservation. We suggest that the dramatic urbanisation and increase in literacy experienced by the peninsula since the 1930s has also seen an overall shift in favour of conservation and we recommend several steps to ensure that the costs of wildlife conservation be shared more equitably.
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Mathieu Guérin, Teckwyn Lim, Ange Tan, Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz. A favourable shift towards public acceptance of wildlife conservation in Peninsular Malaysia: comparing the findings of the Wild Life Commission of Malaya (1932) with a recent survey of attitudes in Kuala Lumpur and Taiping, Perak. Malayan Nature Journal, Special Edition, 2017, pp.21 - 31. ⟨hal-01845024⟩

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