IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Value of Tropical Waterways and Wetlands: does an increase in knowledge change community preferences


  • McCartney, Abbie
  • Cleland, Jonelle
  • Burton, Michael P.


This working paper utilises the choice modelling technique to investigate how information and understanding influences preferences of the general public for conservation of natural environments, specifically the tropical waterways and wetlands of the Kimberley region in Western Australia. The paper forms part of a larger study investigating preference divergence for environmental systems between experts and non-experts. By priming the public with more information about complex environmental problems, one might expect them to form preferences similar to that of experts. A preliminary analysis of public low and high information samples finds that, when birds and plants are the focus of species conservation with respect to the tropical waterways, increased information does not significantly impact preferences. However, when fish species conservation is considered significant differences are found. In this instance individuals appear to have reacted favourably to the additional information, recognising that rare species require more protection than widespread iconic species by placing higher values on their conservation. Generally speaking, respondents preferred high levels of conservation improvements over all attributes considered, rather than lower incremental improvements. Results should be interpreted with care as further analysis is required, including investigation of the alternative specific constant and inclusion of individual characteristics to explain sample heterogeneity.

Suggested Citation

  • McCartney, Abbie & Cleland, Jonelle & Burton, Michael P., 2010. "The Value of Tropical Waterways and Wetlands: does an increase in knowledge change community preferences," Research Reports 95065, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eerhrr:95065
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.95065

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:


    Blog mentions

    As found by, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. EERH Research Reports: June 2010
      by David Stern in Stochastic Trend on 2010-07-03 15:06:00


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Abbie Rogers & Jonelle Cleland, 2010. "Comparing Scientist and Public Preferences for Conserving Environmental Systems: A Case of the Kimberley's Tropical Waterways and Wetlands," Environmental Economics Research Hub Research Reports 1080, Environmental Economics Research Hub, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    2. Cleland, Jonelle & Rogers, Abbie A., 2010. "Putting the Spotlight on Attribute Definition: a knowledge base approach," Research Reports 107578, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.

    More about this item


    Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:eerhrr:95065. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.