Managing protected areas poses a constant challenge to natural resource managers in Southeast Asia. Insufficient funds, exploitative activities, bureaucratic procedures, multiple management structures, poor maintenance, under-priced user fees, inequitable distribution of costs and benefits, and forest occupancy continue to plague protected area establishments in the region.
The accumulated body of knowledge provides a rich source of learning on protected areas. From scientific research studies carried out in Cambodia, China, Vietnam, the Philippines, and Thailand, six management strategy options for protected areas are extracted for easy reference and application of natural resource managers. These include building up and managing funds for preservation, rationalizing a national park entrance fee system, enhancing ecotourism benefits, distributing cost and benefits in protected area management, and avoiding resettlement whenever possible.
Protected area management is a dynamic task. Hence, while natural managers may be preoccupied tackling the issues of the day, they may also benefit from the results of studies in carrying out more effective long term strategies. Scientific studies and lessons derived from field experiences should feed one another to create a more dynamic and responsive management ethos for protected areas.
EEPSEA Studies Cited in this Monograph
Insights and recommendations presented in this monograph came from the following studies on environmental and resource economics of the Economy and Environment Program for Southeast Asia:
- Anda Jr, Alexander. 2006. An Institutional Assessment of the Integrated Protected Area Fund in the Philippines. Quezon City, Philippines: Resources, Environment and Economics Center for Studies.
- Bann, Camille. 2003. An Economic Analysis of Tropical Forest Land Use Options, Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia. EEPSEA Research Report No. ???. Singapore: IDRC.
- Dang Le Hoa, Nguyen Thi Y Ly. 2007. Estimating Households’ Willingness to Pay for Preserving Lo Go-Xa Mat National Park, Tay Ninh Province Using Contingent Valuation Method. Ho Chi Minh City: Faculty of Economics, Nong Lam University, Vietnam.
- Nguyen Thi Hai and Tran Duc Thanh. Undated. Using the Travel Cost Method to Evaluate the Tourism Benefits of Cuc Phuong National Park. EEPSEA Research Report . Singapore: IDRC.
- Orapan Nabangchang. 2003. A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Resettlement Policy: A Case Study of Ob Luang National Park, Northern Thailand. EEPSEA Research Report No. 2003-RR10. Singapore: IDRC.
- Thanakvaro Thyl De Lopez, Kan Vibol, et al. Undated. Policy Options for Cambodia’s Ream National Park: A Stakeholder and Economic Analysis.
- Nguyen The Lan. 2007. Protected Area Establishment, Interventions and the Local People’s Livelihoods: A Case Study of Phuhuong Nature Reserve. Vietnam.
- Yazhen Gong. 2004. Distribution of Benefits and Costs among Stakeholders of a Protected Area: An Empirical Study from China. EEPSEA Research Report No. 2004-RR3. Singapore: IDRC.