Local perspectives on marine reserve creation in the Bahamas
In 2000, the Bahamian government initiated the process of developing a network of marine reserves with the goal of setting aside about 20% of their coastal marine environment. Here, we use information from more than 200 interviews, 600 household surveys, and participant observation conducted from 2001 to 2005 in five Bahamian settlements to examine the influence of different socioeconomic factors on individual and community support of a hypothetical no-take marine reserve in their local area. We developed hypotheses regarding socioeconomic characteristics of household and individual perspectives of the marine environmental conditions and current management, and tested and confirmed these using various statistical and multivariate regression methods. We also compared across community variation in responses to within community differences. Policy implications of these findings are discussed.
Area of Interest: Bahamas