Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Resource Economics

Dissertation of Katharina Rauchenecker, 2010

Institutional Change in Hunting and Game Management – The case of German hunting associations
Start: 11/2004
End: 05/2007

German hunting associations are an example of a co-management regime between state administration and partly autonomous local self-governing actors. Although such arrangements are popular in the agri-environmental sector, new societal and political developments, such as the amendment of the German federal hunting law in 1998 and 2002, scrutinize them. Presently hunting associations face challenges that stem from internal and external changes. Novel requirements for wildlife management (due to ecological reasons) and new forms of land use demands by society, politics and members themselves influence the daily management of a hunting association. The research project therefore first identifies the potential influencing factors and then examines their specific impact on the governance structure of the hunting association. Data collection combines qualitative and quantitative methods. The first step consists of conducting personal guided interviews with the executive directors of the national unions of hunting associations. In a second step results are tested by application in a focus group and conduction of a standardized postal survey with the managers of hunting associations in Lower Saxony. The analytical framework includes theories of New Institutional Economics, namely Transaction Cost Theory, New Political Economy and the Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) and Institutions of Sustainability (IoS) approaches. For the first time, the research project provides a detailed situation analysis of hunting associations in Germany. Moreover the dissertation gives an assessment of the response of these resource management regimes to economic and social changes and their efficiency of adaption ability. Besides, the organizational behaviour of hunting associations as interest groups is highlighted. Theoretical considerations from the transaction cost perspective regarding compulsory membership of landowners in hunting associations lead to the conclusion that this should be maintained. In general, the project shows impacts and constraints of institutional change in game and land management and contributes to insights regarding the adaption capacity of self-organized governance structures in natural resource management.

Researcher: Rauchenecker Katharina

Cooperation Partners:

Advisor: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Konrad Hagedorn, PD Dr. habil. Volker Beckmann

Funding: Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt, Osnabrück