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Determinants of private forest management decisions: A study on West Virginia NIPF landowners

Listed author(s):
  • Joshi, Sudiksha
  • Arano, Kathryn G.
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    The availability of timber in the United States depends largely on forest management and investment decisions of nonindustrial private forest landowners since they hold the largest share of forest land in the nation. Since NIPF landowners are so diverse, there is a need to better understand the determinants of their decisions so that policies could be in place to motivate them. A survey was carried out in 2005 to the nonindustrial private forest landowners of West Virginia to examine the factors affecting their forest management decisions. The study looked at four categories of decisions related to forest management: timber harvest, silvicultural activities (i.e., tree planting, herbicide application, fertilization, thinning, grapevine control, and timber stand improvement), property management activities (i.e., road construction, road maintenance, surveying/boundary maintenance, and access control), and wildlife habitat management and recreation improvement activities. Four models were developed to examine factors affecting each category of forest management activity. The results showed that landowner, ownership, and management characteristics of NIPF landowners are associated with their forest management decisions. Specifically, age, education, profession, income, ownership size, period of forestland acquisition, distance of the forestland to the place of residence, whether the forestland was purchased or acquired through inheritance or as a gift, primary objective of forestland ownership, and presence of a written forest management plan were found to be significant determinants for at least one of the categories of forest management activities. The models explained 25%, 27%, 31%, and 24% of the variation in timber harvesting, silvicultural activities, property management activities, and wildlife habitat management and recreation improvement activities, respectively. Understanding the underlying factors influencing forest management decisions of this diverse group of forest landowners could form the basis for developing, modifying and targeting policy instruments to motivate NIPF landowners in forest management.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Forest Policy and Economics.

    Volume (Year): 11 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 2 (March)
    Pages: 132-139

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:forpol:v:11:y:2009:i:2:p:132-139
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    1. Ian W. Hardie & Peter J. Parks, 1996. "Program Enrollment and Acreage Response to Reforestation Cost-Sharing Programs," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 72(2), pages 248-260.
    2. Daowei Zhang & Warren A. Flick, 2001. "Sticks, Carrots, and Reforestation Investment," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(3), pages 443-456.
    3. Gregory, S. Amacher & Christine Conway, M. & Sullivan, Jay & Gregory, S. Amacher, 2003. "Econometric analyses of nonindustrial forest landowners: Is there anything left to study?," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 137-164.
    4. Nagubadi, Venkatarao & McNamara, Kevin T. & Hoover, William L. & Mills, Walter L., 1996. "Program Participation Behavior of Nonindustrial Forest Landowners: A Probit Analysis," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 28(02), pages 323-336, December.
    5. Nagubadi, Venkatarao & McNamara, Kevin T. & Hoover, William L. & Mills, Walter L., Jr., 1996. "Program Participation Behvaior Of Nonindustrial Forest Landowners: A Probit Analysis," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 28(02), December.
    6. Arano, Kathryn G. & Munn, Ian A., 2006. "Evaluating forest management intensity: A comparison among major forest landowner types," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 237-248, December.
    7. Conway, M.Christine & Amacher, Gregory S. & Sullivan, Jay & Wear, David, 2003. "Decisions nonindustrial forest landowners make: an empirical examination," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 181-203.
    8. Bell, Caroline D. & Roberts, Roland K. & English, Burton C. & Park, William M., 1994. "A Logit Analysis Of Participation In Tennessee'S Forest Stewardship Program," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 26(02), December.
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