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Title: Choice modeling: public preferences for enhancing benefits from private forests in the Adirondacks
Author: Dennis, Donald F.; Twery, Mark J.
Publication: In: Burns, R.; Robinson, K., comps. Proceedings of the 2006 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium; 2006 April 9-11; Bolton Landing, NY. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-14. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 362-366.
Abstract: Recognizing the importance of private land in meeting society's needs for forest-related benefits, public agencies fund programs that provide aid to private landowners to enhance public benefits derived from these lands. This may include technical help, education, tax incentives, and cost-share programs for various management activities. It is important that program goals be aligned with underlying public values and preferences. A random utility model provides the theoretical construct for a choice model in which respondents rank alternatives displaying varying levels of cost and public efforts to improve timber production, wildlife habitats, and recreational opportunities on private forest land. Personal interviews were conducted at the Adirondack Visitor Interpretive Center located in Paul Smiths, NY. Participants completed a conjoint ranking survey and a series of demographic and attitudinal questions. Most respondents believed the availability of forest-related recreation is important to society and that landowners should be permitted to restrict access to their land. However, less than half of the respondents thought landowners should receive incentives to permit public recreation. A nonmetric conjoint analysis (SAS) estimated the parameters of the choice model. Results provide the relative preferences and acceptable tradeoffs between cost and the different program goals (timber, wildlife habitat, and recreational opportunities) of respondents.
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