Common Pool Resources

821 Words 4 Pages
The “Tragedy of the Commons” is a metaphoric term that was popularized by Garrett Hardin in 1968. However, the Tragedy of the Commons is widely understood as an economic theory that suggests that individuals will act in their own self-interests and overuse a common pool resource for their own short-term benefits, while destroying the resource for long-term use. While focusing on population growth, the welfare state, and the use of the Earth’s natural resources, Hardin suggests that individuals are incapable of policing or managing common pool resources based on morals and consciousness alone (Hardin, 1968). This idea is widely accepted and reflected in resource management systems around the world. Common pool resources, specifically natural …show more content…
Because natural resources are global in scale, individuals managing natural resources are usually social institutions, politicians, people involved in local and national resource governance systems, social and physical scientists, and other interested parties (Sikor et al., 2017). To preserve natural resources, and other commons, policy and decision makers from diverse backgrounds must put aside their own self-interested behavior and cooperate with others in order to achieve the overall goal of resource management (Kopelman, 2009). This paper will explore how or if cooperation arises when common pool resources, specifically natural resources, are regulated in large-scale populations. It is hypothesized that cooperation among individuals or agencies managing common pool resources is needed to efficiently protect the resources from depletion or over-use. The individuals affected by potential policies protecting natural resources have to cooperate and adhere to community or global enforcements of such policies as well. The overuse and management of three natural resources and its relations to cooperation and the Tragedy of the Commons are highlighted in this …show more content…
There are many animal species that are in danger of being extinct. Often times their natural habitats are destroyed by deforestation, which eventually leads to declining population rates of certain animal species. However, many animal species are endangered due to poaching and other wildlife crimes. Many wildlife crimes that happen around the world are considered ‘open access’ crimes. Unless an animal is considered personal property of an individual or institution, the animal is considered an open-access common pool resource. This is a dangerous way of viewing and managing wildlife resources because a free-for-all mentality is created and animal species are then in danger of being over exploited. A 2011 article titled Preventing Wildlife Crimes: Solutions That Can Overcome the ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ suggests that the majority of wildlife poaching committed globally is not done by organised criminals or professional poachers, but rather by individuals living in the same area as the animals. Often times locals take advantage of the flora and fauna species around them to gain monetary benefits. Locals often capture animal species and sell them to a middleman or market. The legal and illegal trading of wildlife species is often the only source of income for individuals in impoverished

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