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An exploratory study of community expectations regarding public forests in Western Australia

Williamson, J., Rodger, K., Moore, S.A. and Warren, C.ORCID: 0000-0003-3842-4637 (2012) An exploratory study of community expectations regarding public forests in Western Australia. Australian Forestry, 75 (2). pp. 100-106.

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For much of the 20th century the management of public forests in Western Australia focused on timber production and economic outputs. Shifts in environmental attitudes over the last four decades have contributed to a much broader set of community expectations. This paper analysed these expectations regarding public forests in south-western Australia at the start of the 21st century. A two-stage survey approach included a face-to-face interview followed by a questionnaire. The questionnaire consisted of a comprehensive list of 176 items that forests potentially provide, such as conservation, scenery, bushwalking and timber products, and respondents were asked to indicate the extent of their support for each. Those surveyed covered a range of ages and affiliations including academia, conservation, forestry, primary production, Indigenous interests and young people. Clearly evident was strong support for the aesthetic values of these forests and their natural environment, with weaker but still notable support for using forest resources. The comprehensive list of items in the questionnaire provides a novel, rapid means of assessing community expectations, with potential benefits for forestry planning and policy development.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Environmental Science
School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: Institute of Foresters of Australia Inc.
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