Human Network and Data Coordinator eButterfly Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada
In order to understand the impacts of conservation strategies, researchers, managers, and decision-makers must acknowledge the interdependence between nature and society, observing how both conform to a Complex Adaptive System (CAS). It is essential to acknowledge the interdependence of both the biological and social domains on conservation by integrating the two disciplines into a single methodological framework, improving conservationists' planning toolbox. We use as a case study the Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus), an iconic migratory butterfly that is in peril due to climate change and habitat degradation.
To achieve our objectives, this work is comprised of three key elements: 1) a systems dynamics population of the Monarch, 2) a discrete choice experiment aiming to describe urban residents' preferences for Monarch conservation strategies across the US and Canada, and 3) a method to couple both of the previous two pieces together into a coupled social-ecological model which, then, we use to analyze NGOs' private funding dynamics to improve their budgeting efficiency. More specifically, to test for ecological and financial mismatches between donations forecasted assuming a fixed donor’s willingness to Pay and realized contributions, which respond dynamically to donors’ context-dependent attitudes
Our goal in this paper was to test for ecological and financial mismatches between donations forecasted assuming a fixed donor’s WTP and realized contributions, which respond dynamically to donors’ context-dependent attitudes.
Our analysis uncovered that forecasted donations (using a non-dynamic donor's WTP) failed for more than half a million dollars to materialize as funds raised in a more rea-like situation in which donor WTP is dynamic and reactive to the ecological situation.
We then moved to use our coupled model (With dynamic WTP) to estimate the optimal amount of funds an NGO would need to raise to restore enough habitat to achieve a safe minimum Monarch's population size. Our results showed that an NGO would need to request their donors an average of $8 per household to reach their goals, however, such an amount was highly sensitive to the ecological context and the underlying behavioural model. We discuss the implications of those results.