Duan Biggs

Duan Biggs
The University of Queensland | UQ · Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science

Doctor of Philosophy

About

62
Publications
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2,683
Citations

Publications

Publications (62)
Technical Report
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The COVID-19 pandemic and the SARS-CoV-2 virus’s suspected wild animal origins have spurred fresh consideration of how to reduce zoonotic disease risks associated with wild animal trade. This Review assesses existing systems for managing and tracing wild animal trade chains to determine best practices for interventions that are context-specific to...
Article
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Large felids represent some of the most threatened large mammals on Earth, critical for both tourism economies and ecosystem function. Most populations are in a state of decline, and their monitoring and enumeration is therefore critical for conservation. This typically rests on the accurate identification of individuals within their populations. W...
Article
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Robust measures of animal densities are necessary for effective wildlife management. Leopards (Panthera pardus) and spotted hyenas (Crocuta Crocuta) are higher order predators that are data deficient across much of their East African range and in Uganda, excepting for one peer-reviewed study on hyenas, there are presently no credible population est...
Preprint
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Background: The international trade of wildlife (animals and plants) provides critical resources for human communities worldwide and contributes to local, national, and international economies. However, increasing demand presents a significant threat to both species and ecosystems as well as wildlife-centered livelihoods. Concerns regarding illicit...
Article
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Rhino poaching continues to threaten species survival despite decades‐long trade bans, with rhino horn use in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) contributing to global demand. Conservationists have debated over policy alternatives like trade legalization, and insight into TCM stakeholders is needed to support policymaking. The need for more researc...
Article
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A key obstacle to wildlife conservation is a scarcity of funding. A recent paper [Courchamp, F., Jaric, I., Albert, C., Meinard, Y., Ripple, W. J., and Chapron, G. (2018). The paradoxical extinction of the most charismatic animals. PLoS Biol. 16:e2003997. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2003997] illustrates how for-profit businesses' widespread use of th...
Article
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Despite the international ban on the trade of rhino horn that has been in place since 1977, persistent demand for horn in Asia has driven a spike in poaching over the past decade. This has embroiled the conservation community in a debate over the efficacy of banning trade relative to other solutions. Proposals for trade to be legalized and supplied...
Article
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The medicinal use of rhino horn in Asia is a major driver of poaching and illegal trade. Research into the different actors involved in this trade is needed to inform policymaking and improve conservation outcomes. While researchers have investigated rhino horn consumers in Vietnam, studies have yet to focus on China. Here, we conducted a large‐sca...
Article
Multiple sustainability initiatives have emerged in response to the environmental impacts of soy production, especially deforestation and climate change. But company commitments to reduce deforestation in their supply chains are not leading to outcomes on the ground. Achieving concerted action by supply chain actors requires consideration of their...
Article
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Abstract Numerous treatments in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) involve the use of wildlife products, including some that utilize ingredients derived from endangered flora and fauna. Demand for such endangered wildlife products in TCM can threaten the survival of species and pose serious challenges for conservation. Chinese medical practice is e...
Article
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Critical conservation issues such as bushmeat hunting, which exist in complex social, political, and policy landscapes, require the incorporation of diverse sources of knowledge as a key aspect of decision making. We demonstrate the utilization of both individual and collective stakeholder knowledge to contribute toward decision making. We used fuz...
Article
Ecologists and conservation scientists use social science research methods to carry out studies around the world. The language and cultural context in which study instruments are applied often differ from the context in which they were originally developed. Study instruments used in cross‐cultural research need to maintain equivalency in order to e...
Article
Community-based interventions are an important strategy to reduce bushmeat hunting, one of the key threats to African wildlife. However, understanding the possible effects of such programs prior to implementation is vital, in order to ensure that scarce funds are correctly directed. Here we used scenario-based interviews to explore the potential ef...
Article
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African lions are declining across much of their range, yet robust measures of population densities remain rare. The Queen Elizabeth Conservation Area (QECA; 2,400 km 2) in East Africa's Albertine Rift has potential to support a significant lion population. However, QECA lions are threatened, and information on the status of lions in the region is...
Article
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Disney's new Lion King movie (released July 19th 2019) has put lion conservation in the global spotlight, with millions of dollars being committed to recovering Africa's lion populations through the “Protect the Pride” campaign (a partnership between the Lion Recovery Fund and Disney Conservation Fund). Although this USD$ 1.5 million from the Disne...
Article
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Private land conservation areas (PLCAs) have become critical for achieving global conservation goals, but we lack understanding of how and when these areas respond to global pressures and opportunities. In southern Africa, where many PLCAs rely on trophy hunting as an income‐generating strategy, a potential ban on trophy hunting locally or abroad h...
Article
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The hunting and consumption of wild meat (bushmeat) is recognized as a key threat to the world's biodiversity and there are indications this threat may extend to much of the African continent. However, this problem is understudied in African savannah systems-particularly in southern Africa. Due to its illicit nature, little research on the drivers...
Article
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Achieving nature conservation goals require grappling with ‘wicked’ problems. These intractable problems arise from the complexity and dynamism of the social–ecological systems in which they are embedded. To enhance their ability to address these problems, conservation professionals are increasingly looking to the transdisciplines of systems thinki...
Article
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Although a major portion of the planet’s land and sea is managed to conserve biodiversity, little is known about the extent, speed and patterns of adoption of conservation initiatives. We undertook a quantitative exploration of how area-based conservation initiatives go to scale by analysing the adoption of 22 widely recognized and diverse initiati...
Article
There is currently fierce debate among rhino conservation stakeholders, scientists, and policy-makers over the legalisation of trade in rhino horn. Despite the prominent voice of animal welfare organisations in this debate and conservation more broadly, the welfare implications of a legal trade versus a trade ban have not been addressed. To explore...
Article
Full-text available
Conservation practice requires an understanding of complex social‐ecological processes of a system and the different meanings and values that people attach to them. Mental models research offers a suite of methods that can be used to reveal these understandings and how they might affect conservation outcomes. Mental models are representations in pe...
Article
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Views that protected area (PA) expansion relies predominantly on land purchased by government are increasingly being challenged. The inclusion of privately owned PAs (PPAs) in national conservation strategies is now commonplace, but little is known about their long‐term persistence and how it compares to that of state‐owned PAs. We undertook the fi...
Article
Market governance is viewed as a potentially effective mechanism to achieve more sustainable global production-to-consumption systems when state regulation between production and consumption regions is uncoordinated. Through examining a key global food sector, the soy–meat value chain, we assess how effective market governance is. In this sector, n...
Article
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One strategy to address threats to biodiversity in the face of ongoing budget constraints is to create an enabling environment that facilitates individuals, communities and other groups to self-organise to achieve conservation outcomes. Emergence (new activities and initiatives), and robustness (durability of these activities and initiatives over t...
Article
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Experiences with nature through visits to protected areas provide important cultural ecosystem services that have the potential to strengthen pro-environmental attitudes and behavior. Understanding accessibility to protected areas and likely preferences for enjoying the benefits of nature visits are key factors in identifying ways to reduce inequal...
Article
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Rhino poaching in Africa has risen alarmingly over the last decade, driven by illegal trade and demand for horns in Asia, where it is used medicinally. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) has deep cultural roots, and understanding demand drivers will inform conservation decision-making. We interviewed 15 TCM practitioners in Hong Kong, investigating...
Article
This essay is an extended and critical review, of John Hanks’ book Operation Lock and the war on rhino poaching , which is an insider account of hitherto untold stories of a secretive undercover operation to gather intelligence to counter the ongoing slaughter of Africa’s elephants and rhinos. Our critique employs the metaphor “ecology of mind”, fo...
Article
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Protected areas (PAs) remain central to the conservation of biodiversity. Classical PAs were conceived as areas that would be set aside to maintain a natural state with minimal human influence. However, global environmental change and growing cross-scale anthropogenic influences mean that PAs can no longer be thought of as ecological islands that f...
Article
Full-text available
Protected areas (PAs) remain central to the conservation of biodiversity. Classical PAs were conceived as areas that would be set aside to maintain a natural state with minimal human influence. However, global environmental change and growing cross-scale anthropogenic influences mean that PAs can no longer be thought of as ecological islands that f...
Article
An opportunity represents an advantageous combination of circumstances that allows goals to be achieved. We reviewed the nature of opportunity and how it manifests in different subsystems (e.g., biophysical, social, political, economic) as conceptualized in other bodies of literature, including behavior, adoption, entrepreneur, public policy, and r...
Article
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Collins et al. agree with our observation that the trade ban has failed and that a legal trade in Africa's rhino horn will be an important contributor to tackling the current poaching crisis. A skillfully regulated legal trade, in which horn is harvested renewably from live animals, will offer
Article
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A trade ban limits supply, therefore raising prices and driving black market poaching.
Article
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Innovative partnerships for conservation are required to stem the tide of continued ecosystem degradation. Nature-based tourism is one such partnership. Yet the natural attractions that nature-based tourism depends on are under increasing anthropogenic threat. Because of their dependence on international visitors, nature-based tourism enterprises a...
Article
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Enhancing the resilience of ecosystem services (ES) that underpin human well-being is critical for meeting current and future societal needs, and requires specific governance and management policies. Using the literature, we identify seven generic policy-relevant principles for enhancing the resilience of desired ES in the face of disturbance and o...
Data
Full-text available
Enhancing the resilience of ecosystem services (ES) that underpin human well-being is critical for meeting current and future societal needs, and requires specific governance and management policies. Using the literature, we identify seven generic policy-relevant principles for enhancing the resilience of desired ES in the face of disturbance and o...
Article
The success of adaptive management in conservation has been questioned and the objective-based management paradigm on which it is based has been heavily criticized. Soft systems thinking and social-learning theory expose errors in the assumption that complex systems can be dispassionately managed by objective observers and highlight the fact that c...
Article
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An increase in the frequency and intensity of environmental crises associated with accelerating human-induced global change is of substantial concern to policy makers. The potential impacts, especially on the poor, are exacerbated in an increasingly connected world that enables the emergence of crises that are coupled in time and space. We discuss...
Article
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Core to the planning–implementation gap in conservation is the failure to achieve the necessary shared vision and collaboration among typically diverse stakeholder groups to translate conservation assessments and plans into sustained on-ground outcomes for conservation. We suggest that a process of describing and sharing mental models—the cognitive...
Article
Full-text available
Tourism directed at bird watching (avitourism) has become increasingly popular. In many lower and middle-income countries, including South Africa, avitourism is being applied in an effort to simultaneously achieve community development and biodiversity conservation. This paper presents the results of an exploratory investigation of 11 community-bas...
Article
[Extract] The third edition of the Tourism Society's Dictionary for the Tourism Industry has an attractive white and gold cover that catches the eye. The back cover of this small dictionary suggests that is aiming to be a "useful introduction for those new to studying or working in tourism and related industries". A dictionary for a specific field...
Article
[Extract] In terms of the breadth that it covers, this book provides a useful summary of a diverse range of issues in tourism economics. It is therefore a pity that the finishing and editing were poorly done, as it turns what in many ways is a good reference book into a rather mediocre product. There are more editing mistakes than one would expect...

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Projects (4)
Project
I have just started (July 2020) my PhD at the University of Queensland looking at cross-cultural opinions and perceptions of the general public regarding various welfare and conservation issues that impact wild animals today. My research also has an underlying illegal wildlife trade connection in that I wish to see if there are differences or similarities of these opinions between the general public in illegal wildlife trade supply countries in comparison to demand countries.