The Quality of Life and Perceived Human-Wildlife Conflicts among Forest Communities around the Mountain Gorilla’s Virunga Landscape in Africa

Edwin Sabuhoro, Jim Ayorekire, Ian E. Munanura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This article examines the relationships between human perceptions of conflict with wildlife and satisfaction with the quality of life in the Virunga landscape in Africa where mountain gorillas live. In addition, it explores how determinants of quality of life may indirectly influence the perceptions of conflict between people and wildlife. Using the bottom-up spillover theory of life satisfaction, it is hypothesized that quality of life is determined by access to critical livelihood resources, such as food, healthcare, and income. Furthermore, socio-psychological conditions, such as emotional and psychological strength, may mediate the relationship between access to resources and quality of life. This study revealed that life satisfaction positively predicts perceptions of conflict between humans and wildlife. The findings also indicated that health and psychological conditions were the strongest predictors of life satisfaction compared to food and financial security. However, the findings revealed variations by country. For example, food security predicts life satisfaction in Rwanda but not in Uganda. Health security predicts emotional wellbeing in Rwanda but not in Uganda. These results indicate that the nature of the relationship between wellbeing indicators and perceived Human-Wildlife conflict is likely country-specific. Therefore, efforts to strengthen the quality of life to indirectly advance wildlife conservation goals may need to be different in Uganda and Rwanda. The findings also suggest that investing in improving the quality of life of forest communities may incentivize increased perceptions of Human-Wildlife conflict. This is likely a result of pervasive consequences of increased funding for community development programs to incentivize conservation, which risks associating conflict with funding. Additional implications for practice and research are discussed in the paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2248
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


Dive into the research topics of 'The Quality of Life and Perceived Human-Wildlife Conflicts among Forest Communities around the Mountain Gorilla’s Virunga Landscape in Africa'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this