Understanding Community Capacity for Bottom-up Management of Mount Hakusan UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
The aim of the study was to understand the potential of Shiramine villagers for bottom-up administration of Mount Hakusan UNESCO Biosphere Reserve (MHBR). We investigated the various aspects of community capability using data from numerous sources, including interviews, surveys, and published reports. 23 people participated in a survey. Results has showed that the issues such as depopulation (35%), accessibility problems (especially for the elderly), difficulties with tourism, and the effects of school and municipal mergers were the biggest concern for the locals. However, the biggest values of Shiramine was rated as interpersonal interactions (56%), followed by the environment and traditional culture. Most of the residents expressed the high level of happiness by living inside the community (87%), which was related to the strong community bonds and natural surroundings.
The survey showed the presence of a variety of jobs, such as farmers, students, freelancers, housewives, and people working in administrative and governmental positions. These results showed a wide range of community involvement and the possibility of utilizing this diversity to boost the bottom-up management strategy. For the effective and sustainable management of BR, developing inclusivity and active participation, by using variety of talents and knowledge will play crucial role.
Keywords: Community development, UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Bottom-Up approach, Regional management, Sustainability
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