Non-government organization members' perceptions of governance: A comparison between Ontario and British Columbia provincial parks management models

Paul F.J. Eagles, Windekind C. Buteau-Duitschaever, Jasveen Rattan, Mark E. Havitz, Troy D. Glover, Francesc Romagosa, Bonnie McCutcheon

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    7 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper compares perspectives on the governance of the management models employed by two of Canada's largest provincial park systems, from the viewpoint of non-governmental organization members (NGOs) with an interest in protected areas. The two models are the parastatal model of Ontario (ON) Provincial Parks and the public and for-profit combination model of British Columbia (BC) Provincial Parks. Governance was evaluated using a computerized survey based on the 10 United Nations Development Program (UNDP) criteria of governance: accountability, consensus-orientation, effectiveness, efficiency, equity, public participation, responsiveness, rule of law, strategic vision and transparency. As part of a larger project, the survey was administered to members of NGOs with an interest in either of the two park systems. This was done in 2008 for British Columbia Parks and in 2009 for Ontario Parks. Analysis suggested that the 10 governance criteria might form 11 governance factors. Data suggest statistically significant differences in perception between NGOs in Ontario and British Columbia Park. Specifically, members of NGOs in Ontario had positive views and ranked all 11 governance factors closer toward good governance. Members of NGOs in British Columbia ranked 8 of 11 factors negatively, toward weak governance. This is the first study of this type where members of NGOs with an interest in either Ontario or British Columbia Parks voiced their opinion of governance within a systematic survey framework on the management models of the park systems with which they are involved. The research demonstrates that members of NGOs in Ontario have many more positive scores for the governance of the parastatal model than those in British Columbia have for the public for-profit model. We conclude that this difference is due to two factors: the management model used and the institutional relationships between the park systems and the associated NGOs. © 2012 Copyright 2012 Canadian Association for Leisure Studies / Association canadienne d'études en loisir.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)269-287
    JournalLeisure/ Loisir
    Issue number3-4
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2012


    • British Columbia
    • governance
    • management
    • NGOs
    • Ontario
    • parks
    • protected areas
    • provincial parks


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