Environment, Development and Sustainability

, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 461–481 | Cite as

Residents’ perceptions of human–elephant conflict: case study in Bahundangi, Nepal

  • Bhuwan DhakalEmail author
  • Brijesh Thapa
Case Study


Human–elephant conflict (HEC) has created detrimental impacts to the residents of Bahundangi in eastern Nepal. This agricultural community is located in the north-east region of Jhapa District and is the principal point of entry for elephants from West Bengal, India. The impacts are widespread on agricultural lands, household livelihoods, personal property, and security. This study explores residents’ impacts via a qualitative approach whereby locals describe narratives about the state of HEC in their community. This method allows for further probing of the issues and identifies themes to be utilized as the next step to build assessments. Six focus group discussions were conducted among different stakeholders. Five themes were identified which were divided into ten subthemes. Results illustrated a range of opinions and were largely correlated based on where houses were located. Collectively, participants were troubled with the status quo and vented their frustration about the lack of commitment, coordination, and elephant controls by the government. Also, concerns were further emphasized about the increase in conflict intensity which has exacerbated annually. HEC issue has been deeply entrenched and needs a multipronged strategy for conflict mitigation. Results should assist policy and decision makers with respect to implementation of strategic measure for conflict alleviation.


Human dimensions Wildlife Elephant Conflict Perceptions Policy 


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Tourism, Recreation and Sport ManagementUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

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