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date: 15 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The challenge of how to slow the rate of decline in wildlife populations presents a significant public goods provision challenge to economists. This chapter synthesizes a set of outstanding economic issues associated with the efficient design of wildlife conservation. The analysis emphasizes three primary challenges: landowner incentives created by land use regulatory approaches may not promote wildlife conservation, the problem of defining benefits and considering broader landscape dynamics when deciding where to purchase habitat set-asides, and problems of asymmetric information and spatially dependent benefits with incentive-based conservation payments. Our main arguments are illustrated with several simple extensions to prior studies, and we explore future research directions.

Keywords: biodiversity, reserve selection, asymmetric information, land use, conservation, Endangered Species Act, return on conservation investment

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