Private forest owners are both the suppliers and consumers of forest ecosystem services which poses a unique challenge to using incentive-based strategies to encourage forest restoration. We used focus groups and deliberative monetary valuation (DMV) methods to understand the choices of forest owners in Mississippi and Florida. Participants acted as jurors and made judgements about what actions a hypothetical forest owner should make when offered compensation to enhance key ecosystem services. Fifteen major themes were identified via qualitative data analysis. Results support a proposed conceptual model that links perspectives toward forest management with the expression of cultural values and choice. Allocation of income to ecosystem improvements revealed that intentional forest owners seek to maximize utility through personal achievement benefits, rather than income generation alone. Findings have important implications for forest policy and program design by improving the design and efficiency of economic interventions.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
- Sociology and Political Science