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Title: Attitudes toward ecosystem management in the United States, 1992-1998
Author: Bengston, David N.; Xu, George; Fan, David P.
Publication: Society and Natural Resources. Volume 14. 2001. pp. 471-487
Key Words: attitudes, computer-coded, content analysis, ecosystem management, news media
Abstract: Ecosystem management has been formally adopted by a large number of state and federal agencies and by forest products firms and associations. But little research has examined people's attitudes toward this new approach to natural resources management. This study used computer methods to measure favorable and unfavorable attitudes toward ecosystems managemnet expressed in 1500 online news media stories over the period 1992 through 1998. We found that ecosystem management is on the downside of the "issue attention cycle," with the total quantity of discussion of this concept rising in the early 1990's, declining during the mid 1990s, and leveling out in recent years. We also found that about 78% of all attitudes expressed about ecosystems management in news stories have been favorable, comparable to past research based on surveys of the public. Our analysis suggest that ecosystem management may have become a "settled" (i.e., non controversial) issue with broad public acceptance.
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