Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (10): 1358-1368.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2021082

• Original Papers: Animal Diversity • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Chinese public willingness of international wildlife conservation: A case study of African elephant

Xinyu Zhang, Yuxuan Hu, Zhongyi Zhang, Yuhan Fu, Yi Xie()   

  1. School of Economics and Management, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083
  • Received:2021-03-07 Accepted:2021-06-30 Online:2021-10-20 Published:2021-10-20
  • Contact: Yi Xie


Aim The government of China has been attaching great importance to wildlife conservation, actively performing international obligations of global wildlife protection and vigorously promoting public participation to expand public foundation of the conservation. Although the public intention to defend domestic wild species has been presented in literatures, their willingness to conserve global wildlife remains uncommon in the relevant literatures, which provide little decision-making references to promote public participation in global wildlife conservation. We therefore studied Chinese public willingness of nondomestic species conservation and its influencing factors.
Method The global flagship species African elephant (Loxodonta Africana) was selected as an invested subject and relevant studies and practices of their conservation were reviewed to construct the extended framework of the theory of planned behavior. Data were collected on- or off-line for analyses with structural equation modeling.
Results The results indicated that 68.5% of the public responded their positive willingness of African elephant conservation. The factors of individual norm [coefficient (hereinafter coef.) 0.422], past experience (coef. 0.253), perceived behavioral control (coef. 0.160), and attitude (coef. 0.156) illustrated positive impacts on the public willingness of African elephant conservation with a successively increasing impacting degree. The results also showed that male respondents (coef. ‒0.054) had lower conservation willingness, while the interviewees living in the western regions (coef. 0.066) possessed a higher willingness. The model passed the statistical fitting testification, confirming the reliability of the results.
Suggestion We therefore suggests that it is necessary to explicitly stipulate the role of policy guidance and enhance the senses of moral obligation and social responsibility among the public. It also proposes to strengthen publicity and education in the public to enrich their knowledge and experience and to cultivate their positive attitude towards conservation, and to broaden the channels of public conservation participation and improve their perception and behavior control. The recommendation finally includes to formulate reasonable programs and elevate the effectiveness of practical activities such as conservation publicity and education.

Key words: African elephant, conservation willingness, the theory of planned behavior, global wildlife conservation, public