Tunnel Vision or Ecological View?

by Virginia H. Hine, Res. Specialist; Dept. of Anthropology, Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN,

Serial Information: Journal of the Irrigation and Drainage Division, 1971, Vol. 97, Issue 3, Pg. 397-403

Document Type: Journal Paper


The need for a more holistic view of man and his environment in planning man-made alterations in natural eco-systems is cited. Some of the factors that prevent environmental decision-makers from moving toward a more ecological view are analyzed. These include: differences in environmental perception; the position of the decision-maker in the social, political, and economic structure of his community; social values emphasizing progress, economic growth, and the idea of unlimited good. Results of a recent survey indicate that environmentalists are challenging conventional assumptions about such matters as the profit motive, private property rights, the desirability of economic growth, and the capacity of existing economic and political institutions to solve environmental problems. Some of the factors affecting the development of the conservation-ecology movement are analyzed. These include: segmented organizational structure, personal commitment, the effect of opposition, and some of the ideological themes being generated within the movement.

Subject Headings: Economic factors | Tunnels | Ecosystems | Decision making | Social factors | Political factors | Geomatic surveys | Profits

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