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Environmental Values

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Environmental Values

Gaining Legitimacy and Losing Trust: Stakeholder Participation in Ecological Risk Assessment for Marine Protected Area Management

Raphael Treffny and Ruth Beilin

Environmental Values 20 (2011): 417-438. doi: 10.3197/096327111X13077055166144


This study examines the application of a qualitative Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA) tool to initiate management planning and community engagement in newly legislated Marine Protected Areas. Scientists and the agency expected the participatory element to increase the legitimacy of management by achieving consensus about management priorities as well as to engender trust in science and agency procedures. We point to the complex nature of participatory engagement when expert and lay knowledge are combined while an agency's claim to legitimacy rests on scientific judgements. While community engagement offered agency staff an additional way to claim legitimacy it also challenged the way planners, rangers as well as community representatives previously attained trust.


Risk, trust, legitimacy, participation, expert and lay knowledge

REFERENCES to other articles in Environmental Values:

In Truth We Trust: Discourse, Phenomenology, and the Social Relations of Knowledge in an Environmental Dispute. Michael S. Carolan and Michael M. Bell

Risk, Trust and 'The Beyond' of the Environment: A Brief Look at the Recent Case of Mad Cow Disease in the United States. Michael S. Carolan

CITATIONS in other Environmental Values articles

Editorial: To Act or Not to Act? Katie McShane

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