The green economy and protected areas – constraint or opportunity?


Dr Karl Evans, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences | +44 (0)114 2220125


Dr Rob Bryant, Department of Geography
Dr Johan Oldekop, Sheffield Institute for International Development

This project is part of the Risk, Resilience and Responsibility in Public-Private Partnerships in the Green Economy interdisciplinary scholarship network.

Grantham Scholar

Bowy den Braber

How protected areas (PAs) influence people’s well-being and livelihoods is one of the most controversial debates in conservation policy. PAs can constrain economic development by preventing exploitation of natural resources, thus increasing poverty. In contrast, PAs may also secure long-term flows of ecosystem services and generate economic benefits from natural capital, thus reducing poverty in local communities. The debate on whether PAs constrain or provide opportunities for economic development remains lively, intense and unresolved.

It is becoming increasingly relevant as many countries consider expanding protected area networks through biodiversity off-setting and payment for ecosystem services schemes. This studentship focuses on Brazil and Indonesia as case studies. It will apply recently developed analytical techniques and novel datasets to answer the question of how protected areas influence the economic development and poverty of local communities.

Contact: Bowy den Braber,