Do Migrants Degrade Coastal Environments? Migration, Natural Resource Extraction and Poverty in North Sulawesi, Indonesia.

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Recent literature on migration and the environment has identified key mediating variables such as how migrants extract resources from the environment for their livelihoods, the rate and efficiency of extraction, and the social and economic context within which their extraction occurs. This paper investigates these variables in a new ecological setting using data from coastal fishing villages in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. We do not find as many differences between migrant and non-migrant families regarding destructive fishing behavior, technology, and investment as might have been expected from earlier theories. Instead, the context and timing of migrant assimilation seems to be more important in explaining apparent associations of migration and environmental impacts than simply migrants themselves. This finding fits well with recent literature in the field of international migration and immigrant incorporation.





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Cassels, Susan, Sara R Curran and Randall Kramer (2005). Do Migrants Degrade Coastal Environments? Migration, Natural Resource Extraction and Poverty in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Hum Ecol Interdiscip J, 33(3). pp. 329–363. 10.1007/s10745-005-4142-9 Retrieved from

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Randall Kramer

Juli Plant Grainger Professor Emeritus of Global Environmental Health

Before coming to Duke in 1988, he was on the faculty at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. He has held visiting positions at IUCN--The World Conservation Union, the Economic Growth Center at Yale University, and the Indonesian Ministry of Forestry. He has served as a consultant to the World Bank, World Health Organization and other international organizations. He was named Duke University's Scholar Teacher of the Year in 2004.

Kramer's research is focused on the economics of ecosystem services and on global environmental health. He is currently conducting a study on the effects of human land use decisions on biodiversity, infectious disease transmission and human health in rural Madagascar. Recent research projects have used decision analysis and implementation science to evaluate the health, social and environmental impacts of alternative malaria control strategies in East Africa. He has also conducted research on health systems strengthening, economic valuation of lives saved from air pollution reduction. and the role of ecosystems services in protecting human health.

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