From Clients to Stakeholders: A Philosophical Shift for Fish and Wildlife Management

March 1, 1996 - Author: Daniel J. Decker; Charles C. Krueger; Richard A Baer Jr.; Barbara A. Knuth; Milo E. Richmond

Journal or Book Title: Human Dimensions of Wildlife

Keywords: stakeholder; management; decision making; constituents; interest groups; publics; clients; users

Volume/Issue: 1 (Number 1)

Page Number(s): 70-82

Year Published: 1996

Fish and wildlife management in North America has been experiencing a fundamental philosophical shift among professional managers and policy makers about who are the beneficiaries of management. This has been reflected in broadening notions of who should be considered in decision making; not just traditional clients who pay for and receive services of managers, but all stakeholders in fish and wildlife management. The term "stakeholder" has emerged to represent any citizen potentially affected by or having a vested interest (a stake) in an issue, program, action or decision leading to an action. The stakeholder approach in management decision making recognizes a larger set of beneficiaries of management (including, in concept, future generations) than the traditional concepts of constituencies and clients, or customers, a term currently popular among fish and wildlife agencies. The stakeholder approach requires: (1) identification of important stakeholders, (2) flexibility in selection of methods for incorporating stakeholder input in decision making to account for specific contexts, (3) development of a professional management philosophy strong enough to resist powerful special interests when broader public interests are in the balance, (4) development of ways to weigh stakeholder views on issues in management decision making, and (5) establishment of effective strategies for communication between managers and stakeholders and among stakeholders to encourage understanding and compromise.

Type of Publication: Journal Article

Tags: center for systems integration and sustainability, clients, constituents, decision making, interest groups, management, publics, stakeholder, users


Charles Krueger

Charles Krueger

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