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New Study Shows Voluntary Leaders Pave the Way for Solving Environmental Issues

On October 15th a new research study came out from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences showing how unselfish and voluntary leaders are more likely to mobilize support for environmental management within their own communities. Lead author of the study Krister Andersson, Director of the Center for Governance of Natural Resources, and contributing authors Kimberlee Chang and Adriana Molina-Garzón argue that early action taken from unselfish leadership is why local communities are so successful in governing their own resources.  

To further their point, while conducting research for the study, researchers created a game that mimics tragedy of the commons and Andersson comments on their findings, “We saw that when leaders behaved unselfishly as a response to the small, gradual decline in resources—when they make unselfish, harvesting decisions and propose a course of action for the group—then what we see in the next few rounds is much stronger agreement in the group around self-regulation, that many more group members are on board to self-regulate.”

For more information on the study and the article visit the Colorado Arts and Sciences Magazine website. 


Article written by Ciara Coughlan, IBS Student Assistant, PoliSci '21