Writings on Women and Conservation

Today is International Women’s Day. So I’m going to be illustrating some of the types of resources the A.G. Leventis Library & Information Service can facilitate access to with a selection of gender related literature.

[If you just want to see the list of references scroll down to the Selected Bibliography at the end of this post.]

We do have a wonderful print collection, but are about much more than just books. Scientific output has risen exponentially since Kellert and Berry’s seminal paper on gender and wildlife was published in 1987. There is a huge wealth of information out there and the Leventis Library can help connect you with the information you need – whether or not you know what that is yet!

This post focuses on finding a resource that you already have a reference for. We’ll cover finding references in another post.

First things first

Whatever type of reference you have, you can always try putting the title into Google (or a search engine of your choice) with quote marks around it, e.g.

“The effect of gender on adoption of conservation practices by heads of farm households in Kenya”

The quote marks make Google only look for results with that exact string of text. You might strike lucky and find the full text of your reference is on the first page of results. If not, there are plenty of other tricks to try.

Journal Articles

As you might expect, journal articles make up a significant proportion of the selected bibliography. Sometimes journal articles can be really easy to find – you follow the First things first instructions and there it is. This may be because it is an open access article (e.g. Cho et al. 2014); or it may be because you are associated with an organisation with an institutional subscription to the journal and have been automatically recognised.

If a publisher’s website asks you to pay for an article you think your institution has a subscription to, look around the page for a log in link. Select institutional log in (possibly labelled Shibboleth) and you should get to a log in page you recognise. If you have trouble with this ask Lizzie for assistance.

Other articles can be harder to find. We might have what you’re looking for in hardcopy in the Leventis Library. Unfortunately journals aren’t yet included in our online library search, so either come and check the shelves or ask Lizzie (in person / email / tweet / facebook / carrier pigeon!).

If it’s not in the Leventis Library, it’s still worth asking Lizzie as she may be able to find it online for you with her special librarian magical powers! Or help you work out where else you might be able to get your hands on a copy.

University Library

Everyone working for a CCI Partner is eligible to register at, and borrow from, Cambridge University Library. This is a great resource, giving you access to many, many more books that we could possibly find space for in the Leventis Library, so do make use of it if you would benefit from it. For example Women and the environment in the third world (Dankelman & Davidson 2009) and Women & plants: gender relations in biodiversity management and conservation (Howard 2003) are books available to you from the University Library. You will also find a number of journals there not available to you electronically (e.g. Pillai & Suchintha 2006). Contact Lizzie for information on how to register with the University Library.


Student theses can provide excellent original research and data. You will find some theses in the Leventis Library’s print collection (to search the collection go to http://cci.cirqahosting.com/). If the thesis you are looking for isn’t in the library’s collection, you may still be able to access an electronic copy. For UK theses try EThOS http://ethos.bl.uk – the British Libraries doctoral thesis database. For theses from other countries contact Lizzie for assistance if the First things first method proves unsuccessful.


Reports of various types are another important source of information for conservationists. Many recent reports are available online (e.g. Al-Azzawi 2013, O’Brien 1995, Villalobos, Lobo & Casacante 2004). You may be lucky and find the reference just by using the First things first method. If not, try finding the website for the organisation who produced the report and look for a publications database to search. Sometimes documents in these databases won’t come up in a Google search.

However, despite recent surges in digitisation many reports are not yet online. The Leventis Library has a strong collection of this type of resource and the library search (http://cci.cirqahosting.com) will help you ascertain whether the reference you need is in the collection. As with any other type of reference, if you’re struggling to find a report get in touch with Lizzie who can help with sourcing these tricky references.

Leventis Library Print Collection

Finally, there’s the good old print collection. That’s what you probably think of when you think of a library – lots of books and journals sitting on shelves. If International Women’s Day has inspired you Silent invaders: Pesticides, livelihoods and women’s health (CI/PO.pe/008) is an interesting read.

Selected Bibliography

Aboud, A., Sofranko, A. J., & Ndiaye, S. (1996). The effect of gender on adoption of conservation practices by heads of farm households in Kenya. Society & Natural Resources, 9(5), 447–463. http://doi.org/10.1080/08941929609380987
Agarwal, B. (1994). A field of one’s own: gender and land rights in South Asia. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [In the Leventis Library – NP/CU/003]
Agarwal, B. (2009a). Gender and forest conservation: The impact of women’s participation in community forest governance. Ecological Economics, 68(11), 2785–2799. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2009.04.025
Agarwal, B. (2009b). Rule making in community forestry institutions: The difference women make. Ecological Economics, 68(8–9), 2296–2308. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2009.02.017
Aguilar Revelo, L., Quesada-Aguilar, A., & Shaw, D. D. M. P. (Eds.). (2011). Forests and gender. Gland, Switzerland : New York: IUCN ; WEDO. Retrieved from https://portals.iucn.org/library/sites/library/files/documents/2011-070.pdf
Al-Azzawi, R. (2013). Gender in conservation: Does a gender aware approach lead to an improvement in the achievement of conservation outcomes? Godalming, Surrey: WWF-UK. http://assets.wwf.org.uk/downloads/gender_in_conservation_report_june_2014_final.pdf
Awumbila, M., & Momsen, J. H. (1995). Gender and the environment: Women’s time use as a measure of environmental change. Global Environmental Change, 5(4), 337–346. http://doi.org/10.1016/0959-3780(95)00068-Y
Badola, R., & Hussain, S. A. (2003). Conflict in paradise: Women and protected areas in the Indian Himalayas. Mountain Research and Development, 23(3), 234–237. http://doi.org/10.1659/0276-4741(2003)023[0234:CIP]2.0.CO;2
Borden, R. J., & Francis, J. L. (1978). Who cares about ecology? Personality and sex differences in environmental concern1. Journal of Personality, 46(1), 190–203. http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6494.1978.tb00610.x
Cho, A. H., Johnson, S. A., Schuman, C. E., Adler, J. M., Gonzalez, O., Graves, S. J., … Bruna, E. M. (2014). Women are underrepresented on the editorial boards of journals in environmental biology and natural resource management. PeerJ, 2, e542. http://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.542
Czech, B., Devers, P. K., & Krausman, P. R. (2001). The relationship of gender to species conservation attitudes. Wildlife Society Bulletin (1973-2006), 29(1), 187–194. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3783997
Dankelman, I., & Davidson, J. (2009). Women and the environment in the third world: alliance for the future (2nd ed.). London: Earthscan. [In the University Library http://search.lib.cam.ac.uk/?itemid=|cambrdgedb|5027271]
Ewel, K. C. (1989). The role of women in ecology: A perspective from ecosystem science. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 4(2), 39–40. http://doi.org/10.1016/0169-5347(89)90136-5
Feka, N. Z., Manzano, M. G., & Dahdouh-Guebas, F. (2011). The effects of different gender harvesting practices on mangrove ecology and conservation in Cameroon. International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 7(2), 108–121. http://doi.org/10.1080/21513732.2011.606429
Fox, C. W., Burns, C. S., & Meyer, J. A. (2016). Editor and reviewer gender influence the peer review process but not peer review outcomes at an ecology journal. Functional Ecology, 30(1), 140–153. http://doi.org/10.1111/1365-2435.12529
Howard, P. L., 1953-. (2003). Women & plants: gender relations in biodiversity management and conservation. London: Zed Books,. [In the University Library http://search.lib.cam.ac.uk/?itemid=|cambrdgedb|3445241]
Hunter, M. L., Hitchcock, R. K., & Wyckoff-Baird, B. (1990). Women and wildlife in southern Africa. Conservation Biology, 4(4), 448–451. http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1523-1739.1990.tb00321.x
Jacobs, M., & Dinham, B. (2003). Silent invaders: Pesticides, livelihoods and women’s health. London: Zed Books. [In Leventis Library CI/PO.pe/008]
Kariuki, J., & Birner, R. (2016). Are Market-Based Conservation Schemes Gender-Blind? A Qualitative Study of Three Cases From Kenya. Society & Natural Resources, 29(4), 432–447. http://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2015.1086461
Kellert, S. R., & Berry, J. K. (1987). Attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors toward wildlife as affected by gender. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 15(3), 363–371. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3782542
Khadka, M., Karki, S., Karky, B. S., Kotru, R., & Darjee, K. B. (2014). Gender Equality Challenges to the REDD+ Initiative in Nepal. Mountain Research and Development, 34(3), 197–207. http://doi.org/10.1659/MRD-JOURNAL-D-13-00081.1
Martin, L. J. (2012). Where are the women in ecology? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 10(4), 177–178. http://doi.org/10.1890/12.WB.011
Martino, D. (2008). Gender and Urban Perceptions of Nature and Protected Areas in Bañados del Este Biosphere Reserve. Environmental Management, 41(5), 654–662. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00267-008-9069-7
Meinzen-Dick, R., Kovarik, C., & Quisumbing, A. R. (2014). Gender and Sustainability. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 39(1), 29–55. http://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-environ-101813-013240
Merchant, C. (1996). Earthcare: women and the environment. New York: Routledge. [In University Library http://search.lib.cam.ac.uk/?itemid=|cambrdgedb|1173196]
Mukadasi, B., & Nabalegwa, M. (2007). Gender mainstreaming and community participation in plant resource conservation in Buzaya county, Kamuli district, Uganda. African Journal of Ecology, 45, 7–12. http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2028.2007.00730.x

O’Brien, M. (1995). Women’s involvement in conservation I: A focus on Department of Conservation staff. Wellington, N.Z.: Department of Conservation. Available from http://www.doc.govt.nz/documents/science-and-technical/sr80.pdf

O’Brien, M., Jowett, L., & Duncan, P. (1995). Women’s involvement in conservation II: A report on a conference to involve women in the wider community in conservation. Wellington, N.Z.: Department of Conservation. Available from http://www.doc.govt.nz/documents/science-and-technical/sr81.pdf
Ogra, M. V. (2008). Human–wildlife conflict and gender in protected area borderlands: A case study of costs, perceptions, and vulnerabilities from Uttarakhand (Uttaranchal), India. Geoforum, 39(3), 1408–1422. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2007.12.004
Ogra, M. V. (2011). Gender and community-oriented wildlife conservation: views from project supervisors in India. Environment, Development and Sustainability, 14(3), 407–424. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-011-9332-6
Pearl-Martinez, R., Aguilar, L., Rogers, F., & Siles, J. (2012). The art of implementation: Gender strategies transforming national and regional climate change decision making. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. Available from https://portals.iucn.org/library/sites/library/files/documents/2012-086.pdf
Pettorelli, N., Evans, D. M., Garner, T. W. J., Katzner, T., Gompper, M. E., Altwegg, R., … Gordon, I. J. (2013). Addressing gender imbalances in Animal Conservation. Animal Conservation, 16(2), 131–133. http://doi.org/10.1111/acv.12032
Pfeiffer, J. M., & Butz, R. J. (2005). Assessing cultural and ecological variation in ethnobiological research: The importance of gender. Journal of Ethnobiology, 25(2), 240–278. http://doi.org/10.2993/0278-0771(2005)25[240:ACAEVI]2.0.CO;2
Pillai, K. R., & Suchintha, B. (2006). Women empowerment for biodiversity conservation through self help groups: a case from Periyar Tiger Reserve, Kerala, India. Int. J. Agricultural Resources Governance and Ecology,5(4), 338–355. [In University Library http://search.lib.cam.ac.uk/?itemid=|cambrdgedb|1173196]
Radel, C. (2012). Gendered livelihoods and the politics of socio-environmental identity: women’s participation in conservation projects in Calakmul, Mexico. Gender, Place & Culture, 19(1), 61–82. http://doi.org/10.1080/0966369X.2011.617905
Rajvanshi, A., & Arora, R. (2010). Mainstreaming biodiversity and gender in impact assessment for human well-being. Biodiversity, 11(1-2), 25–30. http://doi.org/10.1080/14888386.2010.9712643
Sasvari, A., Aguilar, L., Khan, M., & Schmitt, F. (2010). Guidelines for mainstreaming gender into national biodiversity strategies and action plans. Montreal, Quebec, Canada: Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Available from https://www.cbd.int/doc/publications/cbd-ts-49-en.pdf
Schneider, H. (2013). The future face of conservation: could it be female? Oryx, 47(01), 1–2. http://doi.org/10.1017/S0030605312001573
Sijapati, B. (2008). Gender, institutions & development in natural resource governance: A study of community forestry in Nepal. (PhD). London School of Economics and Political Science (United Kingdom). Retrieved from http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/2978/
Singh, R. K., Rallen, O., & Padung, E. (2013). Elderly Adi Women of Arunachal Pradesh: ‘Living Encyclopedias’ and Cultural Refugia in Biodiversity Conservation of the Eastern Himalaya, India. Environmental Management, 52(3), 712–735. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00267-013-0113-x
Sodhi, N. S., Davidar, P., & Rao, M. (2010). Empowering women facilitates conservation. Biological Conservation, 143(5), 1035–1036. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2010.02.014
Staples, K., & Natcher, D. C. (2015). Gender, Decision Making, and Natural Resource Co-management in Yukon. ARCTIC, 68(3), 356–366. http://doi.org/10.14430/arctic4506
Villalobos, G. R., Lobo, M. B., & Casacante, F. A. (2004). Diversity makes the difference: actions to guarantee gender equity in the application of the convention on biological diversity. San José, Costa Rica: World Conservation Union (IUCN). Retrieved from https://portals.iucn.org/library/sites/library/files/documents/2004-005-En.pdf

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