New research provides new evidence
New research shows that paying communities in Mexico to conserve and manage their jointly-owned property doesn’t just benefit the environment—it strengthens social relationships and a sense of community within those areas as well. …The findings provide new evidence that payments for environmental services can provide broader social benefits, according to the study’s co-lead authors, Oregon State University’s Jennifer Alix-Garcia and Amherst College’s Katharine Sims. This is the first analysis of the social capital impacts of a national-scale, globally relevant forest conservation program. It shows that payment programs improve participants’ “social capital”—involvement in assemblies, ability to resolve conflicts, trust between members and community-building efforts, among other things.