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dc.contributor.authorSieber, Tara L.en
dc.date.accessioned2010-06-10T00:20:23Z
dc.date.issued2006en
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/10182/2020
dc.description.abstractWetlands are defined by New Zealand's Resource Management Act 1991 as "includ[ing] permanently or intermittently wet areas, shallow water and land water margins that support a natural ecosystem of plants and animals that are adapted to wet conditions" (RMA 1991). Over ninety per cent of New Zealand wetlands have been lost or modified. Several conservation groups composed of volunteers have formed to protect the few remaining areas. These wetlands and their conservators serve as an interesting study into human-nature relationships because of the precarious state of the ecosystems and the dedicated, local volunteer groups that form around them. I explored the relationship between the two through the 'soft systems tradition', which places importance on a human constructed "system of interest" (Oreszczyn 2000, p.109) in order to answer three research questions: How can the relationship between members of the wetland conservation groups and the wetlands they preserve be described; What 'triggers' people's participation and involvement in local environmental groups dedicated to wetland preservation and restoration; How do the groups advocate for wetlands and does the government play a role in this advocacy? Using cultural models (Kempton et al. 1995), I argued that definitions and representations of nature are contested. Notions of place and dwelling, of actor-network theory (Cloke and Jones 2002), and of enclosure/restoration (Watts 2004, Elliot 1986), help to explain how people form their representations of nature within wetlands. Social capital theory (Putnam 2000) helped explain participants' involvement in wetland groups. Participants were involved in the wetland protection groups in order to express personal values, skills and identity through the group (Bishop and Hoggett 1986). Most individuals had a high sense of agency, and joined a wetland protection group because they believed that collective action is more effective than individual action (Taylor 2000, Horvath 1999). Groups that meet regularly and frequently, such as the Travis Wetland Trust, have more cohesive inter-personal bonds and individuals are more committed to the group than groups that meet infrequently (Lawler et al. 2000, Lawler 2001, 2002). This connection between group activities and positive emotion (Lawler 2002) explains why most members of the Travis Wetland Trust identified group involvement as the most important aspect of their involvement. In contrast, Otipua Wetland groups' members, who are divided between the Otipua Wetland Charitable Trust Board and the Friends of the Otipua Wetland, were more likely to name restoration or service as their primary reason for involvement in the group. Advocacy was considered part of group action, although it was not officially included in either group's objectives. Individuals believed they advocated in three ways: through education activities, communication regarding the wetland and through the restoration of the work itself. Individual advocacy translates into group advocacy, since the groups are viewed as vehicles for furthering individual concerns, and acting as a group gives a better chance of achieving results (Horvath 1999). The government played a role in both groups, and all parties maintained a positive working relationship with local government. A cooperative relationship with governments is essential for increasing public awareness of wetlands (Horvath 1999).en
dc.format.extent1-149en
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherLincoln Universityen
dc.subjectnatureen
dc.subjecthuman-nature relationshipsen
dc.subjectadvocacyen
dc.subjectlocal environmental groupsen
dc.subjectwetlandsen
dc.subjectCanterburyen
dc.subjectNew Zealanden
dc.subjectenclosureen
dc.subjectrestorationen
dc.subjectplace and dwellingen
dc.subjectproductive exchangeen
dc.titleWetland conservation in Canterbury, New Zealand : human-nature relationships and participation in local environmental groupsen
dc.typeThesis
thesis.degree.grantorLincoln Universityen
thesis.degree.levelMastersen
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Applied Scienceen
lu.contributor.unitLincoln Universityen
lu.contributor.unitFaculty of Environment, Society and Designen
lu.contributor.unit/LU/Faculty of Environment, Society and Design/STARen
pubs.organisational-group/LU
pubs.organisational-group/LU/Faculty of Environment, Society and Design
pubs.organisational-group/LU/Faculty of Environment, Society and Design/STAR
pubs.publication-statusPublisheden
dc.publisher.placeChristchurchen


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