Political ontology reveals the processes of domination at play in the enactment of realities in a(post-) colonial context. In this article, we illustrate the implications of the power asymmetries inherent in conservation and co-management of protected areas involving Indigenous populations. We do so by exploring the case of Pilón Lajas in the Bolivian Amazon region, an area with double legal status as an Indigenous Territory and Biosphere Reserve. Drawing from our ethnographic fieldwork, we describe how indigenous relational ontology and the modern ontology of 'cultural diversity' are enacted by different stakeholders, and analyse critically the problems that arise for protected area management owing to the domination of a single ontology in a context where different ontologies are enacted. We finish by presenting our argument that solving such problems requires a cognitive justice approach.
Keywords: Participation, society–nature relationship, relational ontology, territorial management, resource use, Bolivia
How to Cite:
Gambon, H. & Bottazzi, P., (2021) “The political ontology of protected area co-management: worlding and nature perceptions among stakeholders”, Journal of Political Ecology 28(1), 646–662. doi: https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.3026
- Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der Wissenschaftlichen Forschung (grant PDFMP1_137179)
- Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der Wissenschaftlichen Forschung (grant 176736)