0 Eli Knapp

Eli Knapp

Eli Knapp

Professor of Ecology

Dr. Eli Knapp teaches courses in Human Ecology, Wildlife Behavior, Geology, Ornithology, Conservation Biology, and Swahili at Houghton University, in New York, and in Tanzania, East Africa.  In Tanzania, he directs the Houghton-in-Tanzania study abroad, semester-long program.  He has also taught Forest Ecology and Ecosystems Research for the Creation Care Studies Program, in New Zealand.  He holds a Masters in Environmental Science and Management from the University of Santa Barbara, California (2003), and a PhD in Ecology from Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, Colorado (2009).  His interests lie in the interactions between humans and the environment, especially around protected areas.  He has studied human-environment relationships most extensively in East Africa and lived in Serengeti National Park, in Tanzania, for three years.  His active areas of research involve household economies and poaching around protected areas.


  • Ph.D., Colorado State University (2009)
  • M.S., University of California-Santa Barbara (2003)
  • B.S., Houghton College (2000)

Recent Publications

  • Knapp, E.J., (2019). God Loves Protected Species. And the Poachers Who Kill Them. Christianity Today.
  • Knapp, E.J., Hoffman, T. (2018).  Trading culture for development: Assessing perceptions among rural agropastoral peoples in Tanzania. Development in Practice, Vol. 28(6): 741-753.
  • Knapp, E.J., Peace, N., & Bechtel, L. (2017). Poachers and poverty: assessing objective and subjective measures of poverty among illegal hunters outside Ruaha National Park, Tanzania. Conservation & Society, 15(1):24-32.
  • Knapp, E.J. (2017). Intelligently designed discussion: My journey through intellectual fear in higher education. Christian Scholar’s Review.
  • Knapp, E. J., Rentsch, D., Schmidt, J., & Knapp, L. M. (2015). The plight of the people: understanding the social-ecological context of people living on the western edge of Serengeti National Park.  Serengeti IV. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois.
  • Knapp, E. J. (Submitted 2012). Why Poaching Pays: A Summary of Risks and Benefits Illegal Hunters Face in Western Serengti, Tanzania. Tropical Conservation Science.
  • Knapp, E. J. (2007). Who Poaches: Household Economies of Illegal Hunters in Western Serengeti, Tanzania, Human Dimensions of Wildlife, 12(3):195-196.
  • Knapp, E. J., Rentsch, D., Schmidt, J., Lewis, C., & Polasky, S. (2010). A Tale of Three Villages: Choosing an Effective Method for Assessing Poaching Levels in Western Serengeti, Tanzania. Oryx, 44(2):178-184.
  • Holdo, R. M., Galvin, K. A., Knapp, E. J., Hilborn, R., & Holt, R. D. (2010). Responses to alternative rainfall regimes and antipoaching in a migratory system. Ecological Applications, 20(2):381-397.

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