It’s the Network: How Personal Connections Shape Decisions about Private Forest Use

sn-diagramOur recent paper, “It’s the Network: How Personal Connections Shape Decisions about Private Forest Use” was just published in the Northern Journal of Applied Forestry. This paper reflects a long-time collaboration with David Kittredge (my MS advisor) and several visits to the Harvard Forest (a very lovely and stimulating place to visit).

Kittredge, D.B., M.G. Rickenbach, T.G. Knoot, E. Lorusso, & A. Erazo. 2013. It’s the network: How personal connections shape decisions about private forest use. Northern Journal of Applied Forestry 30(2):67-74. [http://dx.doi.org/10.5849/njaf.11-004]

Abstract

Most private landowners do not have management plans or avail themselves of professional advice before the sale of timber. We designed a pilot study to determine the extent to which they rely on social networks of professionals, peer landowners, neighbors, relatives, friends, and others for information before making decisions to either sell timber or place an easement on their land. We estimated that informal networks of 7–10 people may in some way be related to an owner’s land and a subset of 1 or 2 are influential in a timber sale or easement decision. The size of the network may not be related to decision satisfaction. Peer landowners, local people from the community, and professionals play important roles in decision making.

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