Protected areas are generally perceived as efficient instruments for the preservation of plants and animals and biodiversity. However, since protected areas restrict access to economically and culturally valued resources on the one hand and establish sources of income through tourism, development projects and also fines against intruders (e.g. poachers) they are highly contested arenas of political confrontation and ideological contestation between various groups of actors – actors ranging from local farmers, herders, and hunters to representatives of the local state (such as foresters) and international conservation agents. Three anthropological research projects scrutinize in ethnographic detail the social and political dynamics that are triggered off by the biosphere reserves and national parks Pendjari and W in Northern Benin.
Volk, Bianca. 2019. “Der prekäre Park”: Akteure, Ressourcen und Verhandlung im Nationalpark W, Benin. Göttingen Series in Social and Cultural Anthropology 14. Göttingen: Göttingen University Press. Link: https://univerlag.uni-goettingen.de/handle/3/isbn-978-3-86395-398-0
Kesseler, Sascha. 2017. “Wir schützen unseren Park”: Aushandlungsprozesse von Räumen, Identitäten und Institutionen im Pendjari-Nationalpark (Benin). Göttingen Series in Social and Cultural Anthropology 9. Göttingen: Göttingen University Press. Link: https://www.univerlag.uni-goettingen.de/handle/3/isbn-978-3-86395-262-4
Löhde, Barbara. 2010. “Political Interaction and Negotiation Processes between State and Non-state Stakeholders in the Periphery of the Transnational Park W: A Case Study of the Commune Karimama, Northern Benin.” M.A. Thesis, Institut für Ethnologie und Afrikastudien, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz.