Political Science Faculty Publications

Document Type



Land protection policies such as creating and preserving national parks have been promoted to counter global threats to the environment and to conserve biodiversity. We know little, however, about the country characteristics that might be good predictors of whether states will choose to protect land or not. What factors within a state need to be the focus of global attention or need to be encouraged to promote land-protection policies? Using the global standard of 10% ecoregion protection, we test four categories of predictors–biodiversity, environmental threats, politics (such as treaty participation and NGO activity), and economics (such as GDP and trade measures)–as well as a multidimensional model in a multivariate analysis of 129 countries. Our findings suggest that the multidimensional model best predicts when it is likely that a country will protect land. While a number of key variables such as economic are not supported, the environmental threats model presents us with the strongest individual reason for land protection.

Publisher's Statement

Originally published in Sustainability: Science, Practice, & Policy http://ejournal.nbii.org.

Publication Date

Spring 2008

Publication Title

Sustainability: Science, Practice, & Policy

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