Social equity in natural resource management: A case study from southern Guam

View down a gentle, grassy, hill-bounded swale, with over a dozen people working at pulling up the grass.
Community members help in restoration efforts of the forest in the Manell-Geus watershed. (Photo: Patrick Keeler)

Across the Pacific and other parts of the world, natural resource management decisions that affect how we use our land and seas have led to conflicts between the community and natural resource managers. Our environment is inseparably linked to cultural values, traditions, and identity, which make natural resource management issues more complex to solve. However, effective natural resource management is necessary to build our resilience to climate change and to protect the livelihoods of our island communities. This case study will examine the impact(s) of community involvement in natural resource management efforts in the Manell-Geus watershed over the last ten years. Volunteer programs are one tool natural resource managers use to educate and involve community members in natural resource management interventions. This project will examine the historical context of natural resource management in southern Guam, explore the value and impact of volunteering for natural resource management, and discuss potential community development opportunities to increase equitable, meaningful involvement in natural resource management on Guam.





Romina King
Associate Professor of Geography, University of Guam


Marybelle Quinata
Micronesian Studies Department, University of Guam