Characterising forest owners through their objectives, attributes and management strategies

Victor Blanco Gonzalez, Calum Brown, Mark Rounsevell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Changes in forest land use and management arise from the decisions of individual forest owners. To gain a better understanding of forest owner decision-making and its implications for forest land-use change, we develop a forest owner functional typology based on a meta-analysis of quantitative and qualitative information about forest owners and their decision-making strategies across the developed world. From this typology, we develop an index of forest owner sustainability. We find nine broad forest owner functional types: industrial productionist, non-industrial productionist, for-profit recreationist, for-profit multi-objective, non-profit multi-objective, recreationalist, species conservationist, ecosystem conservationist and passive owner. These owner types align along three gradients representing (1) their economic focus, (2) the intensity of their management practices and (3) the type of goods and services they provide (private vs. public). We also find that multi-objective and conservationist owners generally practise the most sustainable forms of forest management and industrial productionists the least sustainable in terms of triple bottom line sustainability. Supracontinental land owner typologies of this kind can be useful in assisting international policy making and in developing resource management programmes. We suggest that future studies should investigate forest owner typologies in the developing world, forest owner information-sharing networks, and the ways in which forest owners learn and adapt to environmental change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1027-1041
Number of pages15
JournalEuropean Journal of Forest Research
Volume134
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Functional types
  • Land use
  • Sustainability
  • Typology
  • MULTIFUNCTIONAL LAND-USE
  • DECISION-MAKING
  • GLOBAL TRENDS
  • TYPOLOGY
  • CONSERVATION
  • SERVICES
  • SWEDEN
  • BIODIVERSITY
  • TRANSITIONS
  • LANDSCAPES

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