Nosara Social Science Study Report to the Community: Four Perspectives on a Sustainable Future in Nosara, Costa Rica

Dr. Alvaro Salas Castro is a frequent quest on the Nosara Podcast. You may remember him as the leader of the community round table event at El Local last July 29th. This event was hosted to share & gather information for the Nosara Social Science Study.

A team of high level social scientists including Dr. Alvaro Salas, Tina Nabatchi, Christian Freitag, and Greg Munno are conducting the study focusing on Nosara’s ability to become a model community for the world, or just another standard beach town.

There are many different levels to the study which evolves around the sustainable future of Nosara. After the event they have been working hard on processing the data further with the first results now coming out.

We just received the publication of the research which we’ll include here below as a downloadable PDF as well as the Abstract from the publication:

The town of Nosara on Costa Rica’s Nicoya peninsula is home to a vibrant community of diverse residents and is adjacent to an important turtle nesting site. However, tensions between lifelong residents, more recent transplants, visitors, and developers have increased as more of the
world discovers this once-isolated haven. Climate change, income inequality, and alienation from a
distant government apparatus have further complicated effective land-use planning and fractured
social cohesion. Using a mixed-method approach of in-depth interviews (n = 67), Q methodology
(n = 79), and public deliberation (n = 88), we explored residents’ priorities for the future of their
town. The results indicate four different perspectives on Nosara’s future. Despite the tensions among
those four perspectives, they show consensus on one overarching community issue: the need for
a sustainable development plan. The case also shows how Q-methodology can assist scholars and
practitioners who embrace participatory approaches to policy development and conflict resolution in
the environmental arena.

For more background on this also include below is one of the earlier Dr. Salas episodes if you haven’t heard about this research before. More news and updates about the next steps and process will follow soon, so keep an eye out for any new updates!

Leave a Reply