Pacific Conservation Biology Pacific Conservation Biology Society
A journal dedicated to conservation and wildlife management in the Pacific region.

Just Accepted

This article has been peer reviewed and accepted for publication. It is in production and has not been edited, so may differ from the final published form.

Dingo singing: the howl of the advocate

Angela Wardell-Johnson , Clare Archer-Lean , Jennifer Carter


World Heritage protected areas are increasingly valuable resulting in engagement and advocacy challenging traditional formal management. Contesting voices show sharp divides in positions, but also opportunities for partnerships. The agency of the stakeholder being supported is crucial to any advocacy research but is complicated by the interested parties primarily being non-human animals, plant species or broader environments. They cannot speak in any literal sense. Scientists and managers frequently draw on empirical research to provide proof of voice in advocacy giving primacy to the scientific voice allowing moral and ethical positions to languish. Semantic mapping and close textual analysis contextualised positions in a specific case study: advocacy on behalf of the K’gari-Fraser Island dingo. We compared positions in the formal management community with the scientific research community. Themes in advocacy agendas and metaphorical strategies framing positions identify differences between, but also common ground. Management advocacy was premised on limits to human-dingo interaction while science advocacy called for dingo welfare. The synergy was tourists defined as the greatest threat to dingo welfare and viability. This common ground provides an effective starting point to support the dingo voice. Identifying options and constraints in advocacy positions is crucial for the future of dingoes on K’gari, but also for all people who engage with World Heritage values. Implicitly this paper defends the place of advocacy in scientific discussion and explored potential options for effective negotiation to achieve conservation outcomes acceptable to managers of contested iconic species in a World Heritage context.

PC17036  Accepted 05 February 2018

© CSIRO 2018