An excerpt from: Journal of Natural Resources Policy Research Vol. 1, No. 3, 243–253, July 2009 The Tragedy of the Commons * GARRETT HARDIN Professor of Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara JR1o9Ju3Nr9nR-a0l4o56f79Natural Resources Policy Research, Vol. 1, No. 3, May 20 9: p . 0–0 GT h . e H T a r d a g i n e d D y e o c e f m t h b e e C r o 1 m9 6 m 8 o n s “The tragedy of the commons develops in this way. Picture a pasture open to all. It is to be expected that each herdsman will try to keep as many cattle as possible on the commons. Such an arrangement may work reasonably satisfactorily for centuries because tribal wars, poaching, and disease keep the numbers of both man and beast well below the carrying capacity of the land. Finally, however, comes the day of reckoning, that is, the day when the long-desired goal of social stability becomes a reality. At this point, the inherent logic of the commons remorselessly generates tragedy. As a rational being, each herdsman seeks to maximize his gain. Explicitly or
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This note was uploaded on 12/05/2011 for the course BIO 2F03 taught by Professor Cartwright during the Spring '11 term at McMaster University.