The Atlas of Conflict Reduction

The Atlas of Conflict Reduction

A Montana Field-Guide To Sharing Ranching Landscapes With Wildlife

By Hannah Jaicks

Science Diplomacy: Managing Food, Energy and Water Sustainably

Strategies for Sustainable Development Series

This book takes readers on a journey through western Montana to showcase ranchers and partner groups who are pioneering strategies for reducing conflicts with wildlife and why. Conservation heroes, using psychological theory interwoven with personal stories from the twenty-first century, provide a roadmap on how healthy, shared ranching landscapes can be achieved.

Hardback, 248 Pages


February 2022

£80.00, $125.00

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About This Book

The book is a firsthand account of Dr. Hannah Jaicks’ journey through western Montana's ranching landscapes to showcase the stories of ranchers and affiliated groups who are pioneering strategies for reducing conflicts with wildlife, while also stewarding the landscape. Americans depend on these people who live by working on the land. Ranchers have the power to shape the future of our lands, waterways, and wildlife communities, but enduring perceptions frame ranching as a unilaterally destructive force to the environment. Perception is slippery ground to base an argument on, however, and reality is far more complicated. Often seen as antithetical to one another, American ranchers and wildlife have long been entangled with another. The book is about producers and partner organizations who are forging new paths in conservation and addressing these seemingly intractable entanglements to sustain working ranch operations alongside healthy wildlife populations. It elevates the voices of these people striving daily to achieve wild and working landscapes in the West and serves as a model for how others can begin to do the same.

The author takes readers on a journey up western Montana to a different valley in each chapter and showcases the place-based stories of everyday conservation heroes who practice regenerative ranching, provide consciously raised agricultural products, advance strategies for collaborative conservation and protect vital habitat for endemic wildlife that would otherwise be developed and subdivided beyond repair. Ethnographic storytelling is interwoven with psychological theories to inform readers about progressive ways to make the world we share – with people and animals – a better place to live. Illustrations by Katie Christiansen of wildlife and conflict-reduction tools accompany the text, helping to underscore the vivid realities of shared landscapes and how they are achieved. 

There is no doubt the history of ranching is laden with problematic examples, and public and private rangelands are not universally in good condition today. This book aims to capture the increasing recognition that strong ranching practices coincide with good land and wildlife stewardship measures, but ranchers need help. If we want to see more of this remarkable work happening, environmentalists and concerned citizens need to step up and ensure these practices are not only possible but also become the norm. Everyone must be willing to come to the table and navigate discussions about how to work together more effectively and collaboratively. This book is a roadmap for how people can begin to do so.


“Dr. Jaicks is at her strongest when weaving dialogue from her extensive collection of interviews in Montana’s ranching community together with surveys of ecology, food systems and climate change literatures. Her approach offers a compelling glimpse into the lives, concerns and values of ranchers—a population that many, especially outside of the Rocky Mountain West—may have very limited access to. And just as importantly, her analysis gives readers a clear picture of how those lives, concerns and values can help chart a path toward human-wildlife coexistence.”—Joshua Morse, Gund Graduate Fellow, Rubenstein School for Environment and Natural Resources, University of Vermont, USA.

Author Information

Dr. Hannah Jaicks is an environmental psychologist who works across the Northern Rockies to help rural communities and native wildlife populations be more resilient under contemporary conditions of environmental and socioeconomic stress.


Science Diplomacy: Managing Food, Energy and Water Sustainably

Strategies for Sustainable Development Series

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations; Foreword by Dr. Susan G. Clark; Acknowledgments; List of Abbreviations; Introduction; Chapter One Boundaries; Chapter Two Understories: The Centennial Valley; Chapter Three Fear and Loathing: The Big Hole Valley; Chapter Four The Problem with Nature: The Ruby Valley; Chapter Five Beasts of Burden: The Gallatin Valley; Chapter Six A Climate Case for Cattle: The Tom Miner Basin; Chapter Seven This Is Going To Be a Huge Challenge: The Blackfoot Valley; Notes; Index.


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