Date of Award


Degree Type

Honors Paper

First Advisor

William C. Holliday, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Larissa Smith Fergeson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Ruth L. Budd, Ph.D.


This thesis explains Costa Rica’s transformation from a country that was seeking to maximize its economic capabilities through the cattle industry to a country that realizes the true cost of such actions. During Costa Rica’s cattle boom in the 1950s and 1960s, the Costa Rican government adopted economic policies that sought to take full advantage of the international market’s demand for the byproducts of country’s cattle. However, the following decade brought a recognition of the incredible damage the agricultural expansion had dealt on the land. Subsequent presidents and government officials dedicated their efforts into reforming the cattle industry through new regulations and legislations. The farmers and ranchers of Costa Rica also developed more sustainable practices to ensure that their cattle businesses would continue to exist and thrive while their land remained unspoilt.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.