Social influences in forest owners' choice between co-operative and investor-owned buyers
This study investigates the role of social networks when producers choose a buyer for their produce â€“ either a co-operative or an investor-owned firm. The empirical basis is personal interviews with ten forest owners, five co-operative suppliers and five IOF suppliers. The findings indicate that forest owners influence each other as to choice of buyer, and that the social influences are stronger among co-operative suppliers than among suppliers to investor-owned buyers. It was expected that the social networks would be more important for forest owners who seek primarily monetary benefits from their forestry, and that forest owners, who are uncertain, are more influenced by social networks. These two expectations get, however, no support from the empirical data.
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